The topic of this post is something I STILL have to remind myself of on a DAILY basis. You see, I have ALWAYS had difficulty living in the moment...even as a child, I over-analyzed and over-thought things, often creating doubt/fear/worry even BEFORE having the experience I was so worked up over. Going away last week, really reminded me of this "shadow side." Despite being on such a beautiful vacation with my family and loved ones, I would catch myself wondering and worrying... "Oh no, I forgot to _______," "Darn, I should have _______." "I really should go back to the hotel room and answer those e-mails." "I need to find time to finalize my website." The list goes on and on and ON. Why is it my natural instinct to punish, shame and guilt myself? It's okay to go on vacation...heck, it is HEALTHY to go on vacation and to just UNPLUG, relax and ENJOY! This didn't actually sink in until the THIRD day of our vacation...we were on an excursion to see the Cenotes. (Don't know what a Cenote is? They are these phenomenal natural sink holes that form when the roof of a cavern collapses. Below is a pic of the whole crew that joined in on the Cenotes fun!)
On this excursion we jumped off cliffs, swam in underground caves and went zip-lining. It was the zip-lining that gave me my "ah-ha" moment. Worried about possibly embarrassing myself, I had to assess the situation before trying it – watching my mother, sister, husband, brother and new sister-in-law go one by one without any fear or hesitation. Finally, it was my turn and the list of fears and worries popped up again – "What if I look silly?" "What if my bathing suit malfunctions?" "What if..." and as the tour guide let go of me with a gentle push, I realized...what if I actually have fun and don't give a CRAP if I look silly, stupid, un-poised, etc, etc... THIS was when I was actually living in the moment and enjoying WHERE I was WHILE I was there. I even became brave enough to try the "Mayan Sacrifice" (pictured below – I am the little white blurb in pink, haha!).
I didn't do all of the activities with finesse and grace...in fact, I got a little too confident and ended up doing a side flop instead of a graceful round-off into the next swimming hole we explored – aaaand, I even ended up having a bathing suit mishap... Did it matter? Was I mortified? Did everyone point and laugh? NO! Everyone was there in the MOMENT enjoying each other's company with the BEAUTIFUL backdrop of the Riviera Maya.
The concept of living in the moment doesn't just apply to trips to Mexico...it is applicable in ALL aspects of life. It is the little moments that happen day after day that typically make the most impact on one's life. There is SO much to enjoy every day, whether it is a sweet moment you have with a loved one, a phenomenal dessert or my personal kryptonite, a serving of chips and guac – just ENJOY it and actually FEEL the moment and TASTE the flavor! Don't beat yourself up by proclaiming what you "should be doing." One of my favorite master Pilates instructors, Sari Santo, says, "Squeeze ALL the juice out of the lemon." I dare you to squeeze ALL the juice out of the lemon in all that you do. I will be striving for the same – let us enjoy all of the flavors and moments that life has to offer!
P.S. All of the photos I took on the trip were with a 6-year-old point and shoot waterproof camera (aka "Snorkels"). I LOVED this camera. The photos may have been a bit grainy, but it was DURABLE and, well, WATERPROOF! It went on its FINAL adventure snorkeling in the Mexican Caribbean... RIP Snorkels 11/09/15