I’ve been thinking about opinions lately.

In my family, we have lots of opinions and strong feelings and ideas. We are not afraid to share them and debate them and argue our sides. We are passionate and rather confident with what we each believe, which is healthy and great, but having lots of opinions can sometimes and most times, conflict and bounce against each other creating friction and tension.

I’m not even talking about philosophical opinions. Just basic and strong opinions, like which way the toilet paper roll should hang, or whether we should go for a hike. Sometimes they are over where people should sit. I mean these are really important things to feel strongly about and to discuss and debate, am I right?

The last couple of times I’ve been home, I’ve been practicing having less opinions and listening more than talking. Can I just tell you how much peace I experienced?  Maybe I even offered peace to others through my stillness and acceptance of what was and by not reacting to opinions that were different than mine. I actually enjoyed listening to the debates and not partaking in the conversation, except as a listener, smiling and nodding.  I didn’t feel any tension or stress and this was an A-HA moment. I let people be and didn’t try to move the ocean current of debate in any particular direction. I was just present.

I thought about the Girls’ trips I’ve been on and how much joy I experienced in this type of setting. One of the reasons why I love them so much, is because everyone just goes with the flow and the opinions about what to eat, where to go and what to do are carefree and easy and there is usually immediate group consensus without conflict. An A-HA connection!  Our opinions are in alignment, almost immediately.

Now I’m not advocating being boring and a bump on a log without any feelings or expressions. I’m just wondering if we practice being a little bit more accepting and flowing with other people’s opinions without feeling as strongly about our own or thinking that they are wrong, that we might swirl our ideas together like dance partners and just enjoy being in the moments together a little longer, in sync. We might just celebrate our gifts versus our gaps. Just sayin’

Well, that’s just my opinion. ūüėČ



I Love To Watch You Play

I read an article today on the Huffington Post from last year that made me think. ¬†It talked about the 6 most important words you should say today, and it just resonated with me. ¬†The words are, “I love to watch you play.”

Here is a link to the article:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rachel-macy-stafford/six-words-you-should-say-today_b_3863643.html

It was talking about kids’ sports and activities and what parents say after an event. What kids care about most is knowing that their parents enjoyed just watching them play. It made me think about playing with Legos and Play Mobil and Kitchen¬†toys¬†and Play Doh when they were little. I loved just watching my kids play and actually playing along with them. I enjoyed being with them and sharing time together, shifting from one event to the next, with no expectations except hopefully a nap so I could have a mental break. ¬†I loved watching them be and being with them.

Now that they are bigger, I tend to watch their sporting events quite frequently. Sometimes I really feel judgmental and want to critique their work or effort and share my opinions about what I observed.  Reading this article made me realize that what is probably more important is for me to connect with my kids on a more general level and just acknowledge my happiness in seeing them participating and playing.

I tried this tonight after Football and Water Polo. I actually watched them differently today, just feeling thankful to be there with them and enjoying being on the field and at the pool, instead of being rushed and feeling like I should be doing 101 other things.

Instead, I relaxed and enjoyed being present. I had zero expectations. I was truly thankful to be there with them, just observing.


When they got back to the car, I acknowledged loving watching my boys play and said, “I loved watching you play today.” ¬†They genuinely thanked me. They were content and shared their experiences with me and told me how they thought they did. I listened and was content too, and then shared some thoughtful feedback of course. We shared a loving connection. I want them to participate in extra curricular activities and I want them to do well, but I don’t want to add any more stress to their little lives.

I love that they’re playing and getting exercise and enjoying their friends. ¬†I loved watching them play.

As adults, we should also play with no expectations and enjoy the process and just be with no pressure to always win or improve. And maybe someone else will love just watching us play too.