Driving home one evening from an afternoon of swimming and barbecuing with friends, I turned to look in the backseat at my tanned-skinned tuckered-out kids, and with a full heart told my husband, “Summer is what life is all about.”

Growing up surrounded my educators, summer was lathered with reasons to be happy. No schedules. No alarm clocks. No rushing. No shoes? No problem.

Summer completes me. Summer makes me happy.

Summer was once what I lived for until…

…until I stopped putting my happiness in something outside myself.

Like my eight-year-old daughter pointed out, “Mom, summer is perfect except for three things: mosquitoes, allergies, and very, very hot, hotness.”

So while idealizing summer, my child enlightened me that there are even atrocities during the summer if I decided to look for them.

But I wasn’t looking for them.

And I’m not looking for them during fall, winter, or spring anymore either.

It occurred to me over the past few years that it’s not just summer that jets my jollies. I know now what I love, and I formulate all seasons around “it”.

“It” is quality time. It’s sloooowwwiing waaay doowwn. It’s being fully present and enjoying the people under my roof and congregating with the people that enlarge my spirit. It’s more deep conversations…and less achieving goals. It’s less stuff…and more relationships.

What is it for you?

Find ways to create “summer” in your marriage and with your family by starting on creating “summer” for yourself right now. That summer sun can do wonders in the midst of what feels like winter.  Get clear about what it is that nourishes you from the inside out, and make your life all about it.

Reflect:

What have you made into “summer” for yourself?

What is it costing you to live for something in the future?

INspired Leadership Team

Websitewww.inspiredleadershipwithin.com

Email: inspiredleadership@essdack.org

Facebook Communitywww.facebook/leadershipbeginswithin

Twitter: @TamaraKonrade @MikeSanders19 @RachelThalmann @tjfellers

Learn more about working with Rachel.

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