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Time is a funny thing because the more that we are enjoying ourselves, the faster it seems to pass. When we are dreading something or things get hard, time seems to slow down and drag on forever.

Isn’t it ironic to think that time is a constant?

It does not slow down or speed up in accordance with life situations. It is only in our minds that it seems this way. We are the only things that change from day to day or even minute by minute.

What makes us change? Is it merely circumstances that cause us to view things so differently? Instead of letting circumstances change us, why don’t we simply change our state of mind around our circumstances?

I know this is easy to say, but difficult to do.

There are so many distractions. In addition to work deadlines and grocery lists, there are family obligations and kid sports, to name a few.

The only thing that we can do is to make the most of our time.

I am talking to myself here too, as it is exceedingly difficult to live life in the moment and to remain undistracted. More than to ourselves, we owe it to those around us. Our children and family want us to be present. They want us to laugh in the moment when someone tells a funny story. Our friends want us to be truly invested in their lives and know the names of those that are important. Our parents want us to reminisce with them to simpler times and funny stories from childhood.

That being said, we also cannot be everything to everybody all the time. Read that again. We all need the reminder. Sometimes, things must wait or simply not get done for the sake of sanity. We all need a second to breathe and recharge.

It is a decision that we all must make consciously. It is something that we must think about on a regular basis.

I try to remember that when being a personal chauffer to my children or when the clothes are still in the dryer. I am learning (slowly, very, very slowly) to give things up that don’t truly matter. I am learning to pick and choose what really must get done in a day. Some things must wait.

I try to remember that no one puts as much pressure on me than the pressure that I put on myself. I am still learning to truly prioritize and the art of letting things go that do not matter.

I will repeat…you cannot be everything to everybody all the time. You just can’t and that is okay.

Time is a gift. Use it wisely!

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I’ll be honest. This one is a work in progress for me. I have learned through many experiences the frustration that comes when someone hears you but is not truly listening. Let me say that again. Someone hears you but they are not listening to what you are saying. They hear that you are speaking but are not tuned into the words that you are choosing. Their mind is busy creating a response to part of your message or they are simply ignoring the message that you are conveying.

To further disseminate the two, definitions would be helpful to ensure that we are all on the same page.

Hearing is defined as one’s ability to simply hear sounds. It is an innate ability for most to simply use the bones in the ear to know that something is producing a sound vibration. Listening, on the other hand, takes a bit of work. We must engage our minds and bodies in the act of listening; therefore, it is an active thing. Hearing is a passive function of our body.

Why is this so important? The ability to truly listen is something that we encounter on a daily basis. Whether it is at work or home, it is vital to relationships and daily interactions.

Perhaps this is why I have held this topic as something that is so important to me. It wasn’t until a recent interaction with a neighbor that I realized my frustration. I also took this interaction as a sign that I need to change my own ways.

Let me explain…

This young girl was trying to express her opinion to me and told me that she got feisty when people did not listen to her. She told me that the aggravation at not being listened to is the reason that she raises her voice. I explained that someone can hear that you are speaking and listen to what you are saying and then engage in conversation that doesn’t necessarily agree with your opinion. They do not have to agree to be listening, but they must let you finish your thought before they respond. If they interrupt, they are not listening.


I realized in that moment that I too am guilty of getting defensive when someone doesn’t truly listen to what I am saying. I am a grown woman who knows the difference between the two words, but truly being in the moment to listen is something that we all want.

I can remember in an office setting when I felt like people were waiting for me to stop talking because they already had a response ready. They had not even listened to what I was saying. How could their mind be present in the conversation if it was already thinking of a response before I even finished talking?

I have been guilty of this as well, but it is time to stop.

My kids want to know that I will stop what I am doing to look in their eyes when they speak because they are important.

My husband wants to know that I will stop and face him and engage in conversation because he is an essential element in my life.

My friends and family want to know that I will stop when they are speaking and truly listen to their opinion before responding.

So, I must ask. Why as a human race to we underestimate listening and the value that it has on our lives? We all communicate daily. We all participate in interactions that necessitate listening.

Why can’t we stop and listen? If we do, we might be surprised at what a value listening truly is to the people around us.

Heck, we might even learn something.

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When my husband and I began dating, I was quickly introduced to his love of Jeeping. I learned very quickly that this consisted of not only leisurely riding in said Jeep, but also repairing it often and finding places that would test the limits of the vehicle. Honestly, it was a fun hobby that I quickly adopted. Weekends would be filled with finding the latest trails with friends and testing the limits of everyone’s vehicle by climbing rocks and meandering through mud holes. At the end of each ride, there was a sense of accomplishment the Jeep made it though the obstacles with limited damage.

Many times on these trails, you would find the leader reminding everyone to tread lightly. Hmmm. That was an interesting concept, but why was it repeatedly reinforced throughout the ride? I quickly learned that it simply meant to be extra careful not to leave tire marks as the land was owned by an individual and the desire was to not leave a mark from the ride. The desire was to treat the land with kindness so that the club (yes, there was a club of people that did this) could be able to ride on the land again.

Fast forward to today and the rule stands more now than ever. There are no jeeps involved now, but a new mantra on how we should treat people that I am trying desperately to instill in my family. Why don’t we apply this same concept to our interaction with others?

Everyone has been through a great deal this past two years. We are all trying our best to survive. We MUST tread lightly with others. We are all fragile…we are human…tread lightly!

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