Magical moments of reward

“I celebrate myself, and what I assume you shall assume, for every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you. I loafe and invite my soul, I lean and loafe at my ease…observing a spear of summer grass.” –Walt Whitman

Every time you take actions out of your comfort zone, or spend considerable time working hard, I recommend you consciously reward yourself for your courage and effort.

Last Tuesday, I heeded my own counsel. After several weeks of extending my writing and marketing efforts in new ways, I indulged in a blissful afternoon of joy by playing hooky on Crane’s Beach in Ipswich, Mass. bubble

I could not have scripted a finer afternoon. As I let go and gave myself permission to just be, I relaxed into one delightful moment after another. Commencing with a brisk walk, I took in the gentle breezes and friendly faces of those who passed me by, before settling onto my beach towel with a picnic of homemade salad and fresh Asiago parmesan cheese bread (and yes, I helped baked that bread at the farm where I am learning new creative skills—see previous blog posts).

The downtime turned into “up” time as all around me I observed people highly engaged with life, amidst the sand and sea. Two beach towels over from where I was sitting, I was anonymously gifted a private concert by a man who was playing a guitar and singing a beautiful song to his girlfriend. Unsure if it was the passion for his music or his lover, or both,  I witnessed a laid-back contentment on this man’s face that touched me at the core, where I increasingly value such simple surprises. Humming along with him in my own quiet way, I allowed the rhythm of his performance to set the slow-going pace for my day.

A couple hundred feet over in the other direction was a young professional, clearly communicating with his office via a cell phone. Smirking to myself, I wondered if anyone had any idea he was cleverly doing his work from a beach. Technical advances may have de-personalized some of our conversations, but they have certainly expanded our freedom—or in this case, the way we do business.

Other life perspectives emerged, too, as I realized mid-afternoon, off-season beach life seems more intriguing than summer mode when families and young children abound. The writer in me wanted to know the story behind each individual who was opting to spend a Tuesday afternoon by the sea instead of in daily routines. Was the woman walking with her head down grieving the loss of someone she cared about? Could the man who seemed to be ferociously reading be studying for an exam that may lead him to his dream job? Did the two people approaching one another from opposite directions find a reason to connect?

Pondering others’ lives instead of my own was fun, bringing me back to the creative energy of my imagination. Leaving the beach a few hours later, I returned home feeling renewed and grateful that by taking a few hours off in a different location, I granted myself a vacation.

When I immersed back into work to prepare a speech I was to deliver the following week, I knew I would plan another reward for putting myself on the line again.  Maybe the next celebration will be a jaunt to Rockport some late afternoon for a  few hours of  picture-taking with a good friend.

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BELIEF TIP OF THE WEEK for Rewarding and Celebrating Yourself:

Write out the statement below long-hand a few times each day. Then, repeat out loud as frequently as you desire, but especially in the morning and at night when in restful states:

I allow myself to enjoy magical moments of rewarding and filling myself up by just being and observing.

Beth Shedd’s photo, dubbed “A Bubble of Possibilities,” exudes the magic of expanded perspectives when we just let go and be.


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  • Sarah says:

    I felt like I was there and experiencing my own day off!

  • Cathy Lanno says:

    It was nice reading about your day off, Gail. It made me want to take a mini-vacation for a day too. Taking one is now on my “to do” list.

    • Gail says:

      Cathy: What a pleasure to receive your comment on my blog. Hearing from someone in the past unexpectedly is another one of those simple surprises that I love. Thanks for writing. I am glad my article inspired you to take some time off for yourself.

  • Linda says:

    Once again you have transported us right there with you through your beautiful, soulful, descriptive writing. I always look forward to reading your words. Thank you!

    • Gail says:

      Linda: I am glad you appreciate my soulful writing and that you were transported by today’s blog post. Thanks for taking the time to share your kind thoughts.

  • Beth Shedd says:

    Love the idea of “pondering other’s lives instead of our own” Gail…what a gift it is to spend time in the soulful act of “pondering”….

    • Gail says:

      Thanks, Beth, for your wise insights. “Pondering” and taking in another’s perspective or way of living certainly does expand us in new ways.

  • Gail, I always enjoy the visuals in your writing. Your words do transport me on the journey with you. Much love!

    • Gail says:

      Lyndra: Thanks for your continued following of my writing… I enjoy having you on this journey with me. Much love to you as well:)

  • Deb J says:

    Thanks for sharing your moments of reflection and relaxation. Looking ahead makes clearer all the paths behind us. You are appreciated.

    • Gail says:


      I appreciate your kind acknowledgment and comments, particularly your very wise and profound words: “Looking ahead makes clearer all the paths behind us.” Yes, there are beautiful moments in visualizing next steps when all the puzzle pieces of our lives seem to come together. I am on the cusp of experiencing that now, as are many of my clients.

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