Monday, July 12, 2010

Memories Are Made of This

We live in a time where we, arguably, have more of just about everything. We have access to more information than any previous generation. We eat more. We work more. We travel more. We have more things: iPhones, Blackberrys, laptops, desktops, televisions, and Wiis. The average woman owns between 19-22 pairs of shoes (I guess the women I know are above average because they have a lot more than that!). On the street where I live, half of the homes have cars permanently parked in their driveways because their garages are overflowing with things, stuff and whatsamagigs. Yet, we seem to be more dissatisfied than ever before. And I believe there is a simple reason for that.

Things ≠ Happiness

If things made us happy, we would all be dancing giddily down the street, everyday. But, we aren’t. Relationships fail at an astounding rate. There seems to be more distance between parents and children than ever before. Job satisfaction is at an all-time low. Basically, too many people are walking around grouchy and disgruntled.

When I think about my fondest memories, none of them are ‘thing’ related. I remember my Dad teaching me how to hand-dance. I remember my mother making me laugh so hard that I cried and how embarrassing it was to watch her do her ‘car-dance’ while we were at a stop light. I remember doing karaoke with one of my closest friends. I remember walking on the beach, alongside the ocean during a warm summer rain.

If you don’t believe me, ask your children or your significant other about their fondest memories of you. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

Don’t get me wrong. Things, in and of themselves, are not bad. It’s the relentless pursuit of things to the exclusion of all else that causes the problem. Life should be more than just getting more stuff. There are other things that matter.
  • How you treat people matters
  • What you do for yourself matters
  • Your values matter
  • How you feel about yourself matters
  • What you do for others matters
Dedicate a little time everyday to something that matters. Play with the kids. Talk to the spouse. Take a walk by yourself. Laugh with a friend. These are the things from which memories are made.


Kim Crouch said...

Well put. You know one of my favorite quotes is Life is not about the breaths you take but about the memories that take your breath away. We need to spend more thing accumulating memories not things. After all, our true legacy comes not from the things we hand down but from the memories we pass down.

Lose the Excuses said...

That's one of my favorite quotes as well. : )