Do you have a hobby that helps center you? Helps you slow down and focus? I admit I have a number of hobbies. I love learning and hobbies keep life interesting. Knitting, cooking, reading, sewing, working on the tin can… yes, the list goes on, and there is not enough time in the day for everything I would love to do. However, only in the last couple of years have I embraced the hobbies that I believe will be my favorites for years to come- photography and painting. Don’t get me wrong…I will still go back and forth between the others. I still find them challenging, fun and relaxing, but photography and painting affect me in a different way. On a day when my brain seems out of control with thoughts, I can pick up my camera (even the one on my iPhone) or a paint brush and my focus changes. The thoughts quiet and I notice little details. I even find myself noticing these details when my camera isn’t within reach. Do you know these little details can be beautiful and amazing? A tiny flower that many might walk past without even noticing, the way the light paints the colors of a blade of grass or the sky, a drop of water hanging on after a rain, a layer of ice magnifying the underlying colors of a branch, the seemingly never ending shades of green in the spring: these details remind me that even on the worst day there are little details to be appreciated and thankful for. Sometimes we just have to look harder to see them. We have to take the time without rushing through our lives. We have to notice them: the moments, the people, the colors of the sky, the tastes of a good meal. These seemingly little things are the moments that make up our lives, but so many times we rush through the day busy with plans and big ideals to accomplish. Granted we all have responsibilities to attend to, but sometimes we rush so much that we miss enjoying the little things that in reality are the big things. My camera and paintbrush help me slow down and notice these things and appreciate them in a way I never truly have before.
I hope you take the time in your busy day tomorrow to slow down just a bit and notice some of the little things to appreciate in your life. No matter how bad you may think things are in any given moment…you can still find some little things to appreciate if you learn to slow down and adjust your focus.