Being able to achieve one step and moving to the next one is always exciting and makes me feel accomplished. But does this sometimes come at a price when I’m not enjoying the current step I am in? This has been on my thoughts lately when it comes to observing and being a part of Zane’s development. Because babies develop so rapidly in the first year, and even first five years (with cognitive development), watching him become more “human” has been a joy. One minute we’re hip-hip-hooraying because he grabbed a toy. The next it’s him transferring one toy between his hands. And now more recently, it’s him picking himself up from the ground and standing up. Next thing I know he’ll be taking his first steps! As I observe his development, I catch myself looking forward to his next step (not literally). For example, when he was semi-sitting up, I was looking forward to him actually sitting up. Then when he sat up, I was looking forward to him crawling. The “next step syndrome” never seems to end. Many wise veteran parents remind me to just bathe in the moment, and to enjoy each development stage, even if the current stage is separation anxiety and it feels as if I have an extra limb that needs to go with me everywhere. To expand this thought to other areas of life, I notice this with people’s love lives. What I notice is this trajectory: need to find love interest, find love interest, date love interest, become engage with love interest, plan wedding with love interest, become married to love interest, have a baby with love interest, etc. More so I find the first five stages to be the ones when this syndrome is most at play. It’s as if it becomes a race to get married for whatever reason we have in our heads. Instead of bathing in the bliss of being engaged, the focus becomes looking to the next step of planning the wedding. Then sadly when the couple is married and there’s nothing to look to the next step for, this lull leads them to boredom, arguments, discontentment, and sometimes divorce. So I’m trying to learn the wisdom to enjoy each step. To take note how I feel, to capture an image of it in my head, and especially to not be sitting on the edge of my seat for the next step to happen!
Does this apply to any areas of your life where you’re just waiting for the next step to happen and missing out on the current step?