It was the summer of 2007, and I was working from my lake house in the heart of the Ozarks. It was a hot July Friday afternoon, and I had just finished a very stressful conference call with a client. We were working on a large International project, and there were people bickering back and forth. With my “conflict resolver” hat on, I tried to find a solution to some issues, rather than the finger pointing that was happening. As I completed the call and shut down my computer, my kids were getting rowdy in the living room. Instantly, I barked out some orders to quiet down, or they would be put in time out.
I went through the sliding glass door to the large deck that overlooked our peaceful cove. As I was standing at the railing reviewing the call in my mind, I heard the sliding glass doors open behind me. I didn’t hear anything, but felt as if someone was staring at me. I turned to look behind me, and my 7 year old daughter was standing there. As I turned, she said, “Mama, are we going to go on the paddle boat?” It had become our tradition. When we would spend the weekends at our second home, almost every evening at dusk I would take the kids down the cove for a sunset paddle ride. We would each take a drink with us, and we would paddle for an hour or so, while we talked about things going on in our lives. Sometimes we would just sit and paddle, hearing the swishing of the water behind us, as we enjoyed our surroundings.
I replied without a lot of enthusiasm, “I guess we can go. Give me a minute.” As she started to walk back into the house, she paused as she stood at the door and turned back to me saying, “Do you need a Mama Juice?” A huge smile came across my face, and I said, “A Mama juice sounds wonderful! Let’s go!” Ten minutes later, we were paddling away from the dock, juices in hand… The kids had a box of apple juice in each of their cup holders, and I was still chuckling each time I took a sip of my drink. Six years later, I don’t remember if I was sipping a margarita, a mojito, or a glass of wine. What I do remember as clear as if it was yesterday was the peacefulness and happiness I felt paddling down that cove with my little munchkins.
Next time you feel you are in a stressful situation, take a break, find a peaceful place, and have a Mama Juice or whatever your favorite indulgence is, whether it be a protein shake, a snow cone, a glass of lemon water, a beer, a margarita, or a glass of wine.
EXERCISE FOR PEACEFUL MOMENTS
The next time you feel stressed after a meeting or situation, go find a peaceful spot alone or with loved ones, and have a picnic or just sit and have a drink and talk. Forget about the stress and focus on the peace!
Live with passion,