We all know it’s important to have dreams and to plan for the future. But so often in focusing on just the future, we miss the magic of what’s happening in this moment. Many times in life we miss the NOW planning for tomorrow. Yesterday I had two perfect examples of exactly this lesson.
I’m in the British Virgin Islands, sailing with some friends. We spent the morning hiking through the Baths on Virgin Gorda. The Baths are formed by pools of water between huge granite boulders piled on top on one another on the beach. It looks like Mother Nature dumped a huge pile of rocks on the sandy beach. Our normal routine is to land the dinghy (the small raft we tow behind the sailboat) onto the eastern shore and then hike west to Devil’s Bay- one of the most spectacular beaches I’ve ever seen.
As I was leading a new group of folks through the boulders I found myself going so fast, in a hurry to get to Devil’s Bay. About half way to our destination I realized that I was rushing and missing much of the beauty of being in the boulders- for they are simply incredible! I’ve been there so many times that I know the path and almost go through on auto-pilot. But when I realized what I was doing and just stopped and looked around, I was surrounded by such beauty that it took my breath away. It wasn’t about the destination- it was about the journey.
It’s funny how short my memory can be and how many times I need to be reminded of things. Just a few hours later we were sailing from the Baths to the North Sound of Virgin Gorda, just off Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island, and once again, I was in a hurry. The sails were set, the wind was great and life was good. But in the next instant, the wind died as it was blocked by the highest peak of Virgin Gorda and our speed dropped to where it seemed as if we were barely moving.
After a few minutes I was ready to turn on the engines and blast through the slow spot to get to the wind, but Adam, one of the members of our crew gave me some great advice, “Just pretend you don’t have engines and sail through it”. What a concept! :) We continued to sail and it was slow, but in the slowness there too was beauty.
I mentioned to my friend Andrea that it would be easier to just blast through it, and she asked, “Why are you in a hurry when this is so beautiful?” She was so right! It’s almost funny how I was in a hurry to “get there” to relax…. instead of relaxing in the moment. I have to remember that the thrilling moments wouldn’t be so thrilling without the contrast and the balance of the slower times too.
Thank you to my very wise friends for the great reminders. Too often we’re too focused on where we’re going that we forget to notice the perfection of where we are in this moment. And in this moment, I’m still sailing in the islands for another week…. and I intend to enjoy every moment, even the slow ones.
Darryl and I enjoying the sailing…. :)