How are things with you this week? I’m well but very aware that I’ve recently said goodbye to two family friends who died around Christmas time. Funerals and eulogies tend to make me think about how we will be remembered and how much of that is in the eye or the memory of the beholder. The memories that my brother shared at our father’s funeral many years ago were not the ones that I would’ve highlighted nor particularly remembered so, I guess I’ve often wondered, what makes a life worth remembering?
I’m going to offer you my top tip which is…
Do something different.
Apparently the speed at which we perceive time passing – quickly or slowly – is related to the number of new memories we create.
When you look back on the days of you life – even the very recent ones – the things that you remember are more likely to be the things that were out of the ordinary, different, surprising or new.
Our memories of 2020 and 2021 are likely to be very unlike those of other years. We have done many things that were new or different – regular hand washing, sanitising or wearing of masks. Those will be memorable for odd reasons. We may find we struggle to place things in a timeline after March 2020, especially as we settled into the routines of the various lockdowns. There will be no “It was just before Julia’s wedding” because so few of us went to any weddings. Probably very few “Do you remember when we came back from… ” because we didn’t travel far.
When each day blurs into another, routines build and blur – when you can’t even remember what you had for dinner last night and your memory of your life’s passing is just a fog, you know that you are sailing through life without even touching the sides.
The solution? Do something impulsive today!
Currently most of us don’t have the power to change the big picture routine, but we do have the ability to shine an occasional spotlight.
If you do something impulsive – something that is far removed from the hum-drum daily existence – today will glow like a beacon in your memory. What might you choose even in these constrained conditions of lockdown?
- Wear something surprising
- Listen to a different music playlist or a new exercise programme
- Walk somewhere new or by a different route – especially if it’s raining!
- Help the kids put on a panto
- Create a treasure hunt around the house/garden
- Call a friend who’s long overdue for a catch-up conversation while doing any of the above!
And why limit yourself to today?
I usually encourage my coaching clients to incorporate “soft play” into their schedules, at least once a week to do something delicious that nurtures their inner spirit – choose something different each week and maybe on a different day to avoid it becoming routine.
Maybe you can plan to do something impulsive on a more regular basis just to create the memory and go on, tag me in your selfie!
How much better to look back on a series of beacons than a blurry mist.
I can’t wait to see what you come up with.
Have a lovely day!