I’d like to ask you a question. Make a note (mental or physical) of the very first response that comes to mind.
Okay, are you ready? Here it is…
Question: Who are the 3-5 people you would miss the most if they were no longer in your life?
Simple enough, right?
Follow-up question: For each of those dear folks, how long has it been since you spent one-on-one, uninterrupted time with them?
It’s very easy to get busy with life, activities and responsibilities. People and things demand your attention – work, driving the kids around, planning meals, writing that business proposal, catching up on email…. you get the picture I’m sure!
I’ve been writing recently about the oh-so-important topic of “self-care.” So far: sleeping and eating. Next up was to be the “L” in s-e-l-f-c-a-r-e, which stands for “letting go of technology.” However, because of a recent (wonderful) event in my life, I’ve decided to change that up (because I can!) and talk about the “R” – “relationships.”
First, some background….
I grew up in a tiny town in southeast Texas near the gulf coast. Our street was one of those ideal kid-friendly places with house after house of kids our age. Kids who were all in the same little school and all had the same 1st grade teacher. Kids whose parents all made sure everyone else’s kids behaved. Kids who played chase, capture the flag, baseball, football and “big army” (as opposed to little army with little plastic army men). Kids who grew up and played in band together, helped each other through Algebra class, and who ultimately “marched” down the aisle together wearing cap and gown.
I think it’s typical that after high school everyone goes their separate ways and lives their own lives – marriage, kids, career, relocation – and sometimes divorce, tragedy and sadness. However, recently I was reminded in big, bold letters –
My Mom, my sister and I had been talking for months about how we needed to arrange to get together for a visit with one of our dear “home street” friends. It had been close to 15 years since we’d seen her, and she only lives about 1.5 hours from my sister’s place. So, kind of spur of the moment, we arranged for a visit!
The four of us spent the day hangin’ out on the porch, sitting outside by the fire, and catching up – reminiscing about the old days. It was SO great! No computers, no tablets, no electronic devices. Just us girls laughing, sharing and enjoying each other’s company! It literally filled up my “love tank” to be with these three women who I love so dearly. That is the definition of self-care! So, thinking back to my two questions up top….
- What can you do today to integrate the “R” of “self-care” into your regular schedule?
- Who can you contact this week to schedule some time together?
- Who have you lost touch with?
- How can you start setting aside chunks of time in your busy life to make this investment in yourself – and in others?
Are you willing? It’s one of those miraculous laws of life that this simple act of connecting with those who matter most to you will fill you up in places you didn’t know were empty!