We don’t have to go through life, dreading the “daily grind”. Yes, life is full of ordinary moments, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be magical. Read on to discover ways to create ordinary, magical moments and jumpstart your sense of wonder.
Recognize Your Smallness - Nothing jumpstarts our sense of wonder like recognizing how tiny we are in this vast world. On a trip along the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, a storm had recently blown through and the water was churning and foaming angrily against the pillars under the roadway. I was in awe (and a little scared) at the size of the waves and how endless they seemed on the horizon. You may not be near the ocean or the mountains, but just look into the night sky at the expanse of stars and think about the billions of people around the world sharing this view with you! Pretty amazing, isn’t it?
Use Your Senses - Savor your day by indulging your 5 senses. Be attentive to life’s simple pleasures, whether it be the robust fragrance of fresh brewed coffee, or a golden sunset on the ride home from work.
Refocus - It’s easy for me to miss ordinary, magical moments when I’m fretting and preoccupied. When I find myself worried or stressed, I often ask myself if this thing I’m fussing over matters in the grand scheme of life. Most of the time it doesn’t, and keeping that perspective can make all the difference in my day.
Just Say No - Part of what causes me to lose my sense of wonder is the frenetic pace at which I run. Life can feel like a circus where you’re juggling 20 balls while walking a tightrope - you just can’t do it ALL well ALL the time. Weigh carefully what really needs a yes now and what can wait or be turned down entirely.
Be Present - I’m sure I’m not the only one with an endless to-do list running through my head. It’s easy to be constantly distracted in this overly-connected world. Don’t forget to take time daily to put down your smartphone… laptop… tablet… remote control… and just BE with your family or friends. Be present in the moment, and give each other your undivided attention, allowing real connection to happen.
Remember to Remember - Making memories is valuable - isn’t that why we like picking up a souvenir or two on vacation? Documenting special times is important, whether you do it through journaling, snapping photos, or having a keepsake created. Be deliberate about cherishing your most precious memories.
Take a Break - As cheese-ball and cliché as it sounds, we really do neglect to “take time and smell the roses”. You’re working hard today so how can you reward yourself with a break that will get you out of your usual routine and wake you up to the bigger world out there? Maybe it’s driving the long way to your next appointment so you can marvel at the reds and golds clothing the trees. Or perhaps it’s eating lunch away from your cubicle and the noise of the office. Whatever it is, do something different from the norm, and be present in that moment.
Have an Adventure - OK, I know what you might be thinking, but adventures don’t have to include extreme sports or be elaborate or expensive. Adventures expose us to new ideas and experiences, invigorate the mind, body and spirit and just give us something to look forward to. Think more broadly about what an adventure is for you - perhaps it’s sampling that new Asian Fusion restaurant downtown, or exploring a different part of the state on a long weekend drive.
Give Thanks - It’s important to be thankful during the Thanksgiving season, but what about the rest of the year? What simple joys or big blessings can you be thankful for today? Taking time daily to acknowledge these areas can quickly change your perspective and remind you of all the good, wonderful, and ordinary (yet magical) things in your life.
Don’t Wait to Celebrate - The simple act of celebrating makes a moment special. The ordinary becomes extraordinary. Find an excuse to celebrate something simple and create wonder and magic in that moment. Don’t wait for the big “life events” - do it daily and start today.