It’s the end of summer. I’m in denial! And, yet the calendar dates just keep ticking away. Are you drinking in the long days while they last?
I’ve always wanted to stop time. It’s why I became a photographer. Yet, it’s totally impossible, of course, to do so literally. However, have you ever noticed that you can experience the stopping of time figuratively? When your crush first looked at you with that eye contact that said more than words were prepared to? Some time when you were scared, out of your element, or otherwise thrown for a loop? Some moments just press their stamp onto our memories a little more deeply, and that’s basically what stopping time feels like to me.
If you’re feeling the loss of summer as it comes to a close, here are a few ideas to conjure your own time-stopping power!
1) Share. Try talking to someone you normally wouldn’t about something you haven’t spoken about yet. Something meaningful to you. Over the past few months, I’ve been sharing thoughts with friends that I’d otherwise have kept inside. I was astounded by the results! Not only did they not judge or humiliate me, in every single case, the friend found some way in which to relate to what I was saying! It yielded some of the most gratifying connections I’ve experienced in awhile, and made me feel much more part of community.
2) Play with someone outside your peer group. You know how on the playground, your class or your grade basically stuck together? It’s weird how that carries into adult life, too. Know that super cool local business owner 20 years older than you? Ask him out to coffee. Or, what about mentoring a teenager who’s interested in your field? Or, simply striking up a conversation with someone whose profession is completely different from yours. I’ve made some excellent new friends this summer, many of whom are 10+ years older or younger than I am, and many of whom are not artists, like myself. The crazy thing? Again, I’ve never felt so much a part of something — opening up and connecting with people who I never before would have imagined fostering a connection with has shattered my old concepts of how the world is “supposed” to work.
3) Blow something off. Do it. Put off your work. Go outside. Follow a whim. Screw up for once! I won’t tell anyone. Either you can make it back to your desk in time to erase any evidence, or you’ll be surprised to find that no one else even noticed you’d been playing hooky! I’ve been putting stuff off for the past few weeks so I could double-up on my country walks outside — the summer air was simply too irresistible! Weirdly, nothing seems to have fallen out of place. All of my plans are moving forward, all of my work has been to delivered to clients. How’s that for stopping time?
The pictures in this post were taken today when I followed a whim after lunch and took a random ride down country roads.
Have you stopped time? Or felt like it stopped for you? What triggers this mind-boggling phenomenon?
Also, if you’re curious how I’ve managed to get through the vulnerable feelings brought up by these experiments, check out Brene Brown’s book, Daring Greatly.