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Guest Corner: It's the Little Things


“The little things mean a lot,” a wise man once said.

So true is this adage when we consider the complexities of our lives. Now more than ever is a time when people are stressed, rushed and generally frazzled. The 24-hour digital age translates, accordingly, to a 24-hour “on call” role for many of us regarding work, as the ability to turn off and tune out is virtually impossible (pun intended). The expectation of work, work, work, coupled with our family commitments is a lot for many of us who would just like to go back to the simpler days of times past. No cell phones, no Internet, no email to check. We seemed to be a lot more tuned in to our world and our lives in the absence of these modern distractions.

The little things mean a lot.

This statement is, surprisingly, still true, though it takes a lot more effort to appreciate the little things these days. Bigger is apparently better, and an attempt to focus on life’s little pleasures is often met with resistance. We often can’t turn ourselves off, and if we can, we are obliged by work or family responsibilities to turn back on again. It’s a never-ending problem. This is particularly the case for parents who are struggling to achieve the “work-life balance” that seems to be increasingly difficult to grasp.

So how does one step back from the fray and start to appreciate life? How do we turn down the pressure both on ourselves and others so that our lives have more meaning and that we are able to truly “stop and smell the roses?”

The answers to these questions are surprisingly simple:
Slow down – Life is not a race and you may miss the forest for the trees in your struggle to be the perfect parent. Childhood is fleeting and brief so put the smartphone away, close the laptop and sit down and talk to your child. You won’t regret it.

Watch and listen – Sometimes the answers to our many questions are right in front of us, plain as day. In our haste to keep up with the various work and home obligations, we often miss some of the more simple but meaningful aspects of daily life. Open your eyes and look at your world through a new lens. Listen – you’ll be surprised at what you may hear.

Appreciate life’s small pleasures – The little things truly mean a lot and are all around you, ready to be experienced. Take a walk with your kids and appreciate nature. Marvel in the wonder of a beautiful sunset. Watch the rain fall from the comfort and warmth of your home. Stop and smell the roses.

However difficult it may be, it is still worth it to slow down, watch, listen and appreciate the world around us. Work will always be there and kids are only small once. It’s the little things that mean a lot.

--
Samantha Kemp-Jackson is a mother, public relations expert, blogger and media personality. You can read her blog Multiple Mayhem Mamma at www.multiplemayhemmamma.com.

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