2. The Art of Savoring
A few years ago, I worked at a summer camp. On my short breaks from the long days, I spent time planning for and anticipating my upcoming 2 trips: a road trip around the USA for a month in a van, and a few months with AIDS patients in Ethiopia. I was stressed with the details, and I just wanted to go. I was working the camp store one day and some kid was really getting on my nerves. I wasn’t mean, but I definitely wasn’t Miss Sunshine either.
That day I was asked to have a “sit-down” with the director. She told me that I must learn the art of “being” where I am, wherever and whenever I am. I mean to really BE there in spirit. I’m 28 and I’m still learning this skill. For someone like me who’s tied to my iPhone, it’s a challenge to even sit down in a restaurant or coffee shop with someone and decide to keep my phone in my bag.
In my corporate job, we talk about “investing in each other’s emotional bank account”. If you want to invest in me, sit down and look me in the eye and listen without reaching for your phone. We have to get back to savoring each other.
Savor your surroundings. Savor the details. Savor the sunlight in the winter and a cool breeze in the summer. Savor the flavors of your food—I mean it—chew slowly, close your eyes, and taste the goodness of your food (hopefully it’s good food). Take mental snapshots of great moments with each other, obnoxious laughs, incredible sunsets, or whatever makes you happy. These things are so much better to think about than stress!