What Really Matters—The Personal Side

During the summer, I usually go to the pool often and try to connect with family members I do not get to see as much during the school year. My kids look forward to seeing certain sitters (home from college) and attending certain summer activities. And some years, I look forward to a little getaway or alone time.

However, as this summer begins, I realize that none of my usual summer things may take place. All but one of the sitters my kids love cannot sit due to COVID fears. There are no summer activities planned. And we definitely will not be visiting any family members. This summer will undoubtedly look different than most before.

When this whole pandemic began, I listened to a podcast where the speaker talked about what really mattered. His sentiment was—what if what really matters isn’t what we think really matters at all. This idea has been rattling around in my head ever since, and especially while writing this piece. For me, this means, does it really matter that I cannot take a vacation? Does it really matter that my kids cannot attend an art or martial arts camp? What if what really matters is not what I thought mattered at all.

When I think about it, what really matters is that my family has food, a home and clothing (and thankfully we do as my heart goes out to all those right now who are struggling to meet these needs). What matters is that my family members are physically safe and healthy. And what really matters is that I get to spend focused, quality time with the people I love.

So as I look forward to this summer, I can gratefully say that I have the opportunity to lean into what truly matters. I may have to connect virtually with some loved ones, but most of what matters is right in front of me if I have the perspective to see it. If I “zoom out” of the changes of plans and the “too much togetherness” …if I take my focus off of the stress and uncertainty of the times in which we live and gaze at what is right before me, I see a novel and beautiful opportunity to creatively engage this season and connect with those around me (see the practical blog on this topic).

I hope you can “zoom out” and see the potential good that summer holds. However, if you are struggling to feel hopeful or at peace, you are not alone. During these trying times it is essential to care for oneself and plan for the future. Please contact Life Enhancement Counseling services today at (407) 443-8862 to speak with one of our seasoned and experienced mental health clinicians.


Yolanda Brailey