Stop and Smell...Life: Happiness is Paramount

If you're reading this, you probably heard about from a friend or family member...which means you're more than likely over the age of at least 21. While our early 20s are a time for exploration and learning about life and ourselves, it can also be a time to start grinding towards our future. Kudos to you if you've already started your journey, and kudos to you if you're still figuring it all out-no matter your age.

For those of us who have surpassed the 'early 20s' stage, and are now in our mid-to-late 20s, early 30s, or even mid 30s...actually, ESPECIALLY for those of us in those groups, we have to remember to stop and enjoy life. It's in these age groups that we learn who we are and exactly (or somewhere around exactly) what we want in life, want to do with ourselves and what we want in the people we keep close. It's these age groups when we truly embark on our future and get on our grind. We're working, going back to school, starting new hobbies, meeting people that may be in our lives forever, honing in on our passions, committing to community service and working some more. We've tapped into that drive that's necessary to juggle all of these things at once, and mastered the art of fitting it all into 7 days, week in and week out. 

It's a beautiful thing to be able to discipline yourself and make it all happen...making others (and sometimes yourself) wonder "How DOES he/she do it???" 

But while we're out here being excellent and making making magic happen, are we appreciating everything we're doing for ourselves and others-in real time? If we want to maintain our sanity, it's something we HAVE to do. We can't become so busy that we overlook the small victories and joys that we're being provided with on a daily basis. It's important to pat yourself on the back every now and then and reflect on what you've accomplished in the past year, past few months, past few days or even past few hours. Take time to acknowledge yourself and your accomplishments. It's an integral part of the grind.

Outside of ourselves, we've got to take time to enjoy life as it is. Imagine it's been raining for the past few days. It makes commuting more difficult and hinders your options for attire, especially if you have to be outdoors, and it's just overall cumbersome. But once the rain clears, the sun comes out, pollen has been washed away-eliminating pesky allergies, the weather feels great, the grass is greener, and you feel energized. So enjoy the sunshine-no really-take time to enjoy the sunshine and the beauty around you. Let yourself really look at it and feel what's around you. Stop and smell the flowers-literally. But also take a moment to enjoy the rain. Have a movie night in, build a blanket fort, play Twister. Whatever makes you happy. Then enjoy those moments and that happiness.

We've also got to be in the moment with the people we love. Too many times a moment is overlooked or even ruined by our busy minds-always focusing on what we need to do next and our to-do list for the day. Even it's just for 10 minutes, stop and be completely present with the people around you. It's not a waste of time, and nothing will get set so far back that it cannot be done in the time you've already allotted for each task on your to-do list for the day. 

So stay on your grind. Stay focused and don't quit until you've reached ALL of your goals...then set new, bigger, scarier ones. It's all possible and you already have the framework necessary to get it all done. Just remember that your happiness is paramount. Even while you're on that grind.
 Let's get to it.

Until next time, grinders, hustlers and creators...

Peace, beauty and success to all!

Next week...
Tune in for a peek inside the last two years of MY life. It's going to get personal. This one might have to be split into two parts. See you then!