I am a positive, optimistic, very hopeful kind of guy, I always have been. But as I've grown into my life - having an amazing family, starting our own business, buying a home - there are definitely no shortage of stresses in day-to-day life. One of our kids could hit a rough patch with a certain class in school or with their current group of friends. We could hit a deer driving home late at night and have to deal with deductibles, body shops, rental cars, and insurance agents. Somebody could get sick, there may be suddenly necessary house repairs, all of these things happen, believe me, they just did.
I'm also somebody who is extremely dedicated to work. I want our products to be better. I want our customers to be happier. I want more people to interact with what we're creating. It's not the typical negative stress, but even opportunities can be stressful - thinking about EVERYTHING that you *could* do but knowing there's only enough time in the day to pick a few.
This weekend, we went to the Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, Ohio - the largest indoor water park in the US - for our daughter's dance competition. In between watching her compete beautifully on the dance floor, spending time with the family at the water park, and laying out in the sun, something happened - and not just the bad tan line.
At one point, I opened my eyes after a bit of time relaxing by the pool, and realized that I hadn't been stressing out in over 24 hours. I hadn’t even thought to stress about anything. It was a strange feeling. In that instant, I realized that all the stressors were still there, none of our problems had vanished, but without them on my mind I was instead enjoying each moment. I was enjoying my family. I was enjoying the weather. I was enjoying a break from constantly thinking about what more we could do for our business, and dealing with the random curveballs that life always sends our way.
It was nice. It was refreshing.
I'm not saying we should simply ignore our problems and not address them, we know that's not a winning strategy. I'm just hoping that the next time I reach a boiling point dealing with it all, I can think back to these 24 hours I was able to relax, or even just to those 10 minutes before my epiphany in the sun.
I feel recharged to get back at it!
Final Notes and Links:
Our 2-day/1-night stay at Kalahari was a perfect little getaway. More typically my breaks are much shorter - 10-15 minutes when I remember to take the time.
We have our own Hoover Dam in Westerville, which forms the Hoover Reservoir, and when I'm driving by there I love to stop, sit, look out over the water and enjoy the sounds of it all for just a few moments.
Even more often than that, I'll go just right outside where I'm at and take a couple of minutes to enjoy a pretty day before I head back inside and get to work.
Image credit: "Poolside" by DieLaughing licensed under CC BY 2.0