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“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realise they were the big things.”

– Robert Brault

I’m a highly introverted person, which means that often I can get so caught up in my own inner world of thoughts and ideas that I miss things going on in the external world around me. I can be oblivious to the little joys and details and intricacies of life and nature.

Not to say that my inner world isn’t full of its own small happinesses and enjoyments, but a lot of my time is occupied by obsessing and analyzing over the big things of my life, the huge, monumental aspects of life that I’m aspiring to or dreaming about.

Big dreams full of purpose and meaning are crucial to our lives and form a huge part of our reason for living, our motivation for taking the next step. But I think we all sometimes lose sight of the fact that, much of the time, the big things in life are composed of lots of little things.

You don’t just go to college and earn a degree, just like that. You enroll in classes, buy books, read those books, write papers, have philosophical discussions with fellow students, lose sleep to study, write so fast you think your hand is going to fall off at the wrist.

You don’t just enjoy a fun, relaxing evening with the family. You eagerly clean every last bit of cheesy sauce from your plate with a piece of bread, you laugh with your sister at the silly puns your dad makes, you feel a warmth of gratitude and love when you see your mom tirelessly wiping up the messes made from dinner, you snuggle with your furry puppy on the couch, you sit on the porch with your hands wrapped around a steaming mug of hot cocoa while drinking in the sight of the full luminous moon.

You don’t just raise your kids, in one big swoop. You count their baby toes, you hold them in your arms at night and listen to them sleep, you clean messy spaghetti sauce from their faces, you cheer for them at their first ballgame, and then, later on, you watch as they walk across the stage to receive their diploma, and then as they say “I do.”

So often I think we lose the details of our lives and reduce them to vague, uninteresting statements. We lose the joy and awe of really living.

“I went to Grandma’s house tonight.” “I had fun walking in the park today.” “We went on vacation.” “I learned to ski when I was seven.” “We fell in love and got married.” “I have to go grocery shopping today.” “I got my BA in Psychology and then my Master’s in Cognitive Psychology.”

Okay, those are great facts about your life if you were writing up a Wikipedia page about yourself, but that’s not really what happened in the real, actual, details of the time. Your life is made up of so many little, individual moments that you could spend lifetimes recounting every single one.

And yet, we seem to forget them so easily.

I don’t want to let those precious moments slip by without noticing and acknowledging them, and then feeling gratitude and thankfulness for what each of those moments brought to my life and how they have enriched me.

So, like I wrote about recently, let’s slow down and live in the moment.

Life does move fast; so fast, that you couldn’t even catch hold of a moment in time if you tried. But when you fully take in each moment, live them in an acute awareness and mindfulness of life’s pleasures and blessings, it might just help you preserve those moments in a treasure chest of the past until it is full of memories bursting with life.


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