Have you ever heard that saying before? It was 12:47 on Thursday afternoon and I hadn't eaten lunch yet. I was hungry, but I was on a mission. I was glued to the window impatiently waiting for the cable guy to come and hook up my Internet service. Have you ever waited all morning for a service person to show up and at almost 1:00, still no sign of them?
High speed Internet is vital to my business and my sanity. I was filled with the anticipation of how nice it would be to be able to use my phone and be on the Internet at the same time and to have a web page load in less than five minutes. It really is one of those small pleasures in life you quickly forget as time passes and you take the high-speed access for granted.
Once the front door closed and I was alone, I couldn't wait to download my email and watch the graphics come up instead of the little box with the red X in it. Does that sound crazy to you? Since I moved 8 months ago, I've been back on dial-up. How many of you would be a little frustrated to have to give up your high-speed connection, especially if your office is in your home!
I was reminded how easy it is to be happy when you value the little things in life. It started me wondering how many other things I was taking for granted. It takes more awareness and an attitude of gratitude to recognize the little things. I have to say that as much as I love the big things that I'm able to have in my life, I get as much or more pleasure from the little things.
Long after I forget birthday and anniversary celebrations and long vacations at great hotels, I'll still remember the little things. Like the time while living in Mexico, my husband and I were on a deserted beach with our two Yorkies having a picnic and watching the whales breach right in front of us. Or the first time I tasted my friend Antionella's Tiramisu (it's worth the trip to Cabo!). Those little things will never be forgotten. What are your favorite memories? How many of them are the little things in your life, those special moments?
I think if you ask kids what their favorite memories are with the special people in their lives, you may be surprised to find out it's not about spending a lot of money, but making a special connection. When my nephews think about me, they don't think about the gifts I've sent them from Hawaii or China, they think about spending time with me, early in the morning, playing with their dog when I stayed at their house for Christmas.
I remember a few years ago on Oprah, seeing a father and his two young children who had recently lost their mother. The mother had left them videos for various times in their lives so they would still feel her presence as they grew up. They had made sure to fit in all the fun vacations and a trip to Disney World, before she got too sick. They wanted to give the kids as many happy memories of their mom as they could.
When Oprah asked the little girl what her favorite memory of her mother was, she expected to hear one of the things they had just discussed. Instead, she told them about
a night when her mother was too tired for dinner and the two of them enjoyed a bowl of cereal together in bed. The whole audience was in tears, and I'm getting choked up just thinking about it.
We never know how often the little things we do in life become important and cherished memories for other people. So today I took a few minutes out of my schedule to make brownies because I knew my husband would be happy coming in the door and smelling chocolate. It didn't take much time or a lot of money. I didn't even have to make them from scratch, but I got to see my husband's smile when he walked in the house and said, "Something smells good."
You create memories in what you do every day of your life. Did you ever think about that before? When you are at the end of your life and you look back, will you be happy with how you spent your time and whom you spent it with? That's what goes into creating memories. It doesn't have to be a trip to Europe. It can be a surprise picnic in the park with someone special or even on the floor of your office. Have you ever had a picnic in your office before? Why not? When was the last time you did something spontaneous? Aren't those some of your favorite memories?
It really is the small things. So do something to brighten your own day today and take a few minutes to surprise someone else while you're at it.
Excerpted from the audio program "Getting to YES Without Selling, The YES system" by Lynn Pierce, The Sales Therapist
For more than 20 years, Lynn Pierce has been helping sales teams and entrepreneurs double their sales by uncovering their client's true needs and positioning their product as the only solution.
Click here to receive the free mini-course
"9 Steps to Getting to YES Without Selling."
Lynn Pierce is the #1 best selling coauthor of "Wake-Up…Live the Life You Love" and author of, "Change One Thing, Change Your Life; A Personal Transformation System"