Christmas Eve in Toronto was spectacular this year. Rather than the traditional carpet of frigid white stuff, we woke to a sky of perfect blue and spring-like temperatures. It’s unheard of at this time of year.

So I suggest to my hubby that we make the most of this marvel and go for a walk. John rarely walks with me because, in his words:

“Jill you don’t walk. You gallop.”

He’s right. Like pretty much everything I do in life, I walk as if I’m running out of time – fast and purposefully. But this day is different. I have nowhere to be, no pressing deadlines to meet, and the great outdoors beckoning to be savoured.

We choose to walk around the pond in a wooded park near our home and I settle into John’s tortoise-like pace interspersed with periodic stops to take in our surroundings. Before long, the hare in me can stand it no longer, takes flight and I find myself 50 yards ahead of John yelling at him to pick up the pace. Even at a distance I see his eyes roll.

“Jill do you even notice what’s around you?”

I walk back to him and he points to a tree. Its diameter is about two feet with the exception of one foot above the ground where it has been freshly gnawed to a fragile six inches – the handiwork of the industrious teeth of a Canadian beaver. We wonder if a gentle push above the cut would topple the entire tree but decide not to test it. He nods to a log in the centre of the pond where a turtle basks, neck outstretched to absorb the heat of a sun that has confused the season.

“That’s unusual. He should be hibernating now,” John shares.

And we stand content with silence, hand in hand, faces turned up mimicking our turtle.

OK, this is all very romantic but what the heck does it have to do with you or your business? Well, here’s what hit me on that walk…too many of us (yes that’s you and me) gallop through life, head down, attached to our chosen devices, blinded by our own busyness. We’re in a hurry to get to stuff, much of which really doesn’t matter. And in this race we miss what does matter.

Regardless of how ambitious we are, how fast we run or how technologically connected we need to be, we must make time to slow down and notice the simple things this planet provides. Nature soothes the spirit, loved ones ground us. << Tweet This

Make time to be with both in 2016 and make this your best year ever.

Happy New Year!