It’s great to hear from a number of you who still have your tree up. We’re not the only ones. I’m gathering strength over that. And most of you have the same reason — it went by too fast and you didn’t get a chance to enjoy it. If you have a fireplace, building a fire is a good way to force you to slow down. Especially if it’s a real fire since you don’t want to leave it unattended. We don’t have that many fires over the rest of the year for the very reason that a fire says you’re going to sit there for a while. With the tree still up, there’s more of an incentive to do that.
Have you ever noticed how a fire in a fireplace forces you to look at it, and once it has your attention, it grabs you and won’t let you go? It’s hypnotic. I call it forced slowdown. Good for the heart and for the blood pressure which usually needs to come down after the holidays anyway.
Slowdowns are in order. They force us to stop and focus on why we do what we do. They help us think about people we haven’t thought of in a long time — people who were important in our lives but we may have moved on or forgotten their value to us. It’s good to remember them with a card or a phone call. These are harsh times; not enough good will to go around. Well, there’s actually plenty of good will, just not enough use of it. Not enough of investing in it.
Just yesterday, Marti and I were talking about the people in our lives we haven’t heard from or reached out to in a long time. Do we have to wait for heaven in order to reconnect with the important people in our lives? Do it now. This is when we all need each other the most. What is life for if not to connect with the people we love?
I was talking with Alex Klein, our millennial board member, last night, and he made the statement that at no time in human history has change moved faster than it is now, and it’s getting faster every day. Technological advancements are moving so rapidly that it seems almost impossible to keep up. You just master one new challenge and it’s suddenly obsolete. Especially us boomers who are like aliens in the land of cyber culture. We seem to take two steps back for every step we take forward.
So what do we do? We’re not going to give up and we’re not going to retreat. We’re going to move ahead while we invest in what’s important. Relationships. We must find out about each other. We must care about the whole person. Alex has mastered more of this cyber culture than anyone I know. I understand a fraction what he’s saying when he talks about it, but he is also a brand-new father, and that I know about. It still comes down to relationships. We’re all human. We’re all basically the same.
So build a fire, gather anybody with you around it, get hypnotized, and get focused on the people in your life. And if you don’t have a fireplace, imagine one. Or light a candle. Reconnect with people you love. Find out how they are. Connect. Don’t let go of Christmas yet, at least this part of it. There’s still time. There’s always time for this.
Does it sound like I know what I’m talking about? Does it sound like I’m living this? Please forgive me for giving you that impression. I’m not. But it sounds like a great idea, doesn’t it? Let’s let this be a challenge to us all. Monday, I’ll look forward to some stories from you, and sharing with you some stories of my own. (to be continued…)
As I finished today’s Catch a friend sent me the link to a song by John Mayer that is a musical equivalent to this Catch. Click here and enjoy.