High Points: Take a Minute

Paul E. Anna
High Points

It happened to me on the sunniest of Tuesday afternoons when I stopped at the top of Sneaky’s on Snowmass. I took a minute to take it all in. And it was glorious.

Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think so. I think that we are all so busy hustling and bustling that we rarely stop to get a view of the bigger picture. Work seems to be just a series of things on a list to cross off. Recreation is an intensely focused pursuit with the goal taking precedent over the journey. Even relationships are patterned and decided based upon immediate expediency rather than real feelings.

But when I stopped atop the mountain that sunny day and took a minute to sense the sun on my face, to gaze at the surrounding peaks and the swell of the hills and valleys below, to listen to the pounding of my exercised heart and to fill my lungs with the purity of the high-altitude air, nothing else seemed important. It only took sixty seconds to transform the way I was looking at the world.

A minute is such a short and finite amount of time. They go by so quickly that 10 in the morning suddenly becomes 3:45 in the afternoon and we all wonder where the time went. And yet if we simply stop for a minute and take it all in, literally for just a random sixty seconds, we can dramatically modify our days. It is the power of the pause that can change how we look at all the things we do.

When I am working it seems that I always have an eye on the clock and it always seems to zoom by faster than the task at hand. When I am skiing, I race from top to bottom, sailing into the lifts as if the goal is to get the most mileage out of a day. When I am at home I am constantly looking for the “what’s next” that needs to be done. It is so rare that I actually take the time, the minute, to just … be.

And it doesn’t take long. Think of how many minutes we waste each day scanning our phones or other screens to get information that we don’t really need. Or want. And yet the thought of taking just one minute, say three times a day, to stop look and listen to ourselves, to our bodies, can seem like a wasteful indulgence or worse yet, even a waste of time. Even though that minute can be the most invigorating part of any day.

My minute long epiphany on the mountain had the advantage of an incredible location, but even taking a minute at your work, or in your car, or in your home can be transformative.

Indulge yourself. Even if just for a minute.


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