Monday, March 17, 2008

Enjoying Each Stage While You Are In It

Often when I am counseling couples I will encourage them to enjoy the stage that they are in, because once it is passed they will never get to enjoy it again. If they are dating, I try to ask them what is that they have now that they won't have when they are engaged (or married). These might include things like experiencing longing, clumsy awkwardness, mystery, anticipation, they joy of wooing/being wooed, dreaming of a great future, romantic obsession, etc. Often couples will squander and miss all the pluses of the stage they are in because they are thinking about/desiring the next stage. When you are going out, you want to be engaged. When you are engaged, you want to be married. The grass always seems to be greener on the other side of the fence. "Thing will be better when . . ." I often hear.

It is good to have goals and look excitedly towards the future, but we need to enjoy the journey as well. Enjoying the stage you are in is not just about relationships, but could be about lots of other stuff as well. Maybe it's your job. Maybe (like me) it's about school. If you are an adolescent it might be about waiting for your body to grow, fill in, or "get coordinated." If you are a senior it might be about retirement. My theory is that every stage of life, no matter what realm, has some pretty interesting and memorable parts to it. It seems like a much better use of our time to focus on what's good about the stage we're in as opposed to everything we're missing out on. By the way, I'm writing this mostly as reminder to myself but maybe my words are applicable to you as well . . .

May Light increase!

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