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Tiny Wisdom: This Moment Is Worth Savoring

“The journey is the reward.” ~Chinese Proverb

So much of our language about the things we enjoy in life revolves around getting ahead.

We wonder where our relationships are going. We plan to move forward in our careers. We talk about maintaining momentum with new projects.

None of these things are necessarily bad. We naturally crave growth to feel a sense of purpose and progress.

But sometimes we put so much energy into pushing and striving that we miss out on the joy of being where we are.

When we visualize ourselves taking a pause to fully absorb and appreciate our surroundings, it’s often after we’ve arrived. It’s when we’ve climbed the mountain and can finally stand proudly on its peak. It’s when we’ve made the commitment, secured the deal, or finished working on something we love.

From a purely mathematic standpoint, it’s clear we will have far fewer opportunities to enjoy arriving than we will have to enjoy the journey.

The question then becomes: Are we willing to relish in the many uncertain moments when we’re not sure yet where our efforts are leading?

I suspect it boils down to belief and intention.

If we believe we need to create massive change in order to experience joy, we will inevitably feel a sense of restlessness. This moment will feel like something we need to endure to get ahead—something painfully inadequate compared to where we’d rather be.

If we believe that every part of the process can be beautiful and joyful, we will feel a sense of calmness and peace. This moment will feel like something we need to savor while it lasts—something unique and worth celebrating, regardless of where it takes us.

We’re always going to want to spread our wings and fly. We crave freedom, adventure, and possibility, and we don’t want to feel stuck, bored, or limited.

Perhaps happiness is recognizing that we are never stuck. Even if we don’t recognize it, we are always growing and evolving, and the world we know is always changing.

There will never be another opportunity to seize the possibilities of this moment. We can limit ourselves by failing to recognize this, and in doing so, let life pass us by. Or we can realize the greatest adventure is always the one we’re in right now.

Photo by scion_cho

About Lori Deschene

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha and Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. Her latest bookTiny Buddha's Gratitude Journal is available for pre-order now. For daily wisdom, follow Tiny Buddha on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram..

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  • Mike

    Awesome, awesome post! I know, personally, that I have come so far in life and yet I rarely take the time to sit back and bask in the journey. This blog really spoke to me. I hope you realize how gifted you are as a writer.

  • Helen

    Nourishing words to my soul 🙂 thanks Lori! I hope your healing process following the surgery is going optimally!

  • Tess The Bold Life

    Love this one Lori, it’s so true. I’m printing it out. Sometimes I forget I’m already thriving. There is no reason to strive!

  • Andy Scott09

    Can you follow up with some ideas on how to REMEMBER to relish the moment?

  • Thanks Helen! It’s going well. I feel a little better every day. Next week I believe I can start exercising again, so I’m excited about that! =)

  • I’m glad you enjoyed it Tess! I hope you’re having a wonderful day. =)

  • Hi Andy,

    You may find one of these posts helpful:

    http://tinybuddha.com/blog/7-obstacles-to-mindfulness-and-how-to-overcome-them/

    http://tinybuddha.com/blog/feel-happy-and-stress-free-7-simple-tips-to-stay-in-the-now/

    My “tiny” posts are generally just tiny reminders. The longer/how-to posts are within the main blog. You can find them using the categories on the homepage. You can find posts on mindfulness in these two categories:

    http://tinybuddha.com/category/blog/mindfulness-peace-blog/
    http://tinybuddha.com/category/blog/letting-go-blog/

    You can also use the search bar, in the right-hand sidebar, right above the poll.

    Happy Wednesday =)
    Lori

  • Thanks so much Mike. I’m glad this post resonated with you!

  • I loved this post and the idea of remembering to be aware of our journey and experiencing the joy of where we are now. I remind myself of a post I did a year or so ago about paying attention to moments. I hope it is okay to share it with a link http://greenpsychology.net/2010/03/moments/  which talks about shifting out of autopilot and beginning to notice even ordinary moments throughout the day.

  • So true. I had been so wrapped up in planning my exit from where I am now that I never truly enjoyed a moment of being here. I was more concerned with identifying whether I was “going toward” or “going away from” in order to assure myself I am not running away from something. As we know, most of what we flee is stuck to us like glue.

    So, I am working on relishing moments for the sheer pleasure of having them now, in a place that had been made uncomfortable for reasons no longer existent. That makes the planning process less forced, less dependent upon a timetable.

    Thanks again, Lori.

  • jenblether

    Thank you! So often your posts seem to fit perfectly with my frame of mind at the moment I read them. I’m 37 and in a state of flux in so many ways and am inspired and comforted by TinyBuddha everyday. Please keep them coming!

  • This was lovely. I am so glad I found you & tiny buddha. Blessings to you. 😀

  • Ravenwolf444

    Perfect ! Namaste

  • I agree on the need to enjoy every moment of our life instead of always craving for more as this will only create restlessness and unhappiness.  I also learn that for good or for bad, if I learn to appreciate my life, I will be happier person (instead of being grumpy and unhappy). 

  • Mr Namanjain

    i love it , it will change my life 

  • karl

    Simply superb post! I totally need to add this as a bookmark! Thanks, Lori!

  • You’re most welcome, and thanks!