“We do not remember days, we remember moments. – Cesare Pavese

I once read how time feels like it can last forever as a child because we live in a state of wonder and awe. We are completely immersed in the moment and lose sight of anything that is not within our line of sight. Our imagination takes us on adventures, invites creativity and we get lost playing for hours outside doing nothing and everything. 

As we grow up the days fade into months and months into years as life moves on. Our time is filled to the brim with our career path, parenting, bills, errands, relationships, cooking meals, sports games, and caring for our home. Our mental space is taken over by goals we set and the never-ending to-do’s that don’t get done. The busier we are, the more accomplished we feel. But in the meantime, we stop observing, we stop living in the present, and miss all that makes living beautiful. 

Small seemingly insignificant moments. 

It’s as simple as having a dance party, stopping to witness your child fully immersed in the moment, mixing pancake batter, and having a race. It’s not profound or life-changing, but it is fleeting. It’s a feeling that fills your heart with an overwhelming sense of gratitude. Where you pause to truly feel the moment, to live, embrace, and dissolve the outside world to exist solely there. The practice of gratitude, I believe, is the gateway to presence.

Here are three seemingly insignificant ways you can practice gratitude even when life is overflowing with busyness. 

Simply say thank you. Randomly, for no reason at all, when the house is messy, the sink is full of dishes, you have to chauffeur your kids, say thank you. What you’ll begin to notice is more things to be thankful for come into view.

Have a 30-second dance party. Tony Robbin says, “Change your physiology, change your life.” Have you ever got up to grab something from a sitting down position and stood there clueless about what you needed to get? It’s because our physiological state directly impacts the chemicals and neural activity in our brains, which then affects our mental and emotional state.

Choose a gratitude word that you hear repetitively throughout the day. “Mom” is used in my household a minimum of a hundred times a day and I have attached it with one thing to be grateful for in that single moment. 

Life is many things, but a beautiful, slow life is captured in the small seemingly insignificant moments that fill your soul with gratitude. 

Raised in Lāhainā, Haley Celeste Miller is passionate about motherhood, essential oils and working towards their family dream to fish in every country that touches the ocean.