Skip to main content

Bringing Meaning to The Mundane Activities of Daily Living

By Stephen C. Schultz



The air was crisp. The sky was off white with a mix of clouds up higher and fog drifting in lower. The sun peeked through a break in the fog just enough to create a sparkle in the fresh snow delicately balanced on a leafless shrub.




At close to 5000 feet above sea level, snow is no stranger in the winter. I went to the closet and pulled out my coat. I slipped it on and in four steps was at the back door. This time of year, I keep the snow shovels leaning against the outside wall ready to move into action at the whim of mother nature.


This particular storm wasn’t a big one by any winter standard. There was a few inches and that was all. In fact, with the sun peeking through, the sidewalks cleared quickly. I looked up from my shoveling and noticed two Mule Deer, both bucks, gracefully scampering through the snow, across the sidewalk, and through my back yard. Hobble Creek flows less than fifty yards from my home and they probably were simply getting their morning drink of water.




It was a pretty morning to be sure, and the shoveling didn’t take long at all. I stepped back in the house, took off my coat and my phone rang. It was my daughter who has just completed her second week of college where she entered mid-year due to a volleyball scholarship. She asked how I was doing and I did the same. She said her classes were going fine, not much homework yet, but she knew it would get much more busy later in the semester. She mentioned that her roommates and her were getting ready to go to church. She told me about her healthy meals that she has been preparing and the workout routine she has implemented to stay in shape prior to her official university practices starting.


I wish I could say there was a lot of exciting things happening today! It would be fun to post about an exciting ski run down a Black Diamond slope or a much needed Caribbean Cruise in the middle of winter. It seems that is what everyone else is doing as I browse my social media accounts. Sometimes I think I live a pretty boring life! And, you know what? I do!


In fact, that is one of the things I am most grateful for! You see...being able to find meaning in the mundane activities of daily living is the very thing that allows us to appreciate those times when life is a bit more exciting. The majority of us who live on this planet live life one day at a time. We wake up, perform some type of daily hygiene, get dressed, go to work, come home, have a meal or two, go to bed, sleep and start over the next day...day in and day out!




So, the question then becomes...How do we create satisfaction and meaning in our day to day lives? I have known people who simply move from one exciting experience to another. Often they end up searching for that “Thing” that is more exciting than the last “Thing”. More times than not, they end up battling the demons of broken relationships, substance abuse and emotional frustration. Constantly looking for that next best rush of adrenaline or exciting activity is kind of like a cat chasing its tail. Pretty soon you're just worn out with nothing to show for it.

The teens that find themselves in treatment struggle with demonstrating appropriate social skills in their young lives. This is mainly due to the fact they spend their time endlessly searching for the emotional high that is created through gaming, substance abuse, pornography and other abuses of technology. They are literally searching for their next “High”. How many times, as a parent, have you heard, “I’m bored!”

As we shovel the proverbial snow, rake the leaves, do the dishes, make our bed, or set the alarm so we can wake up for work...are we appreciative of the small things? Is there joy that can be found in the snow amongst the branches or seeing the deer as they prance across the street? Have we brought meaning to the mundane activities of daily living? If not, how do we? I am interested in your thoughts on this topic.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Fishing...It's really about relationships!

By Stephen C. Schultz Spring is in the air and that well known feeling of wanting to get out of the house and go fishing is surging through my body. I found myself in a sporting goods store the other day perusing the fishing lure isle. I was in the yard after mowing the lawn and realized I was walking around my small 12 foot fishing boat that is still covered from winter. I have had people ask me over the years, "What's so fun about fishing?". They usually follow that question up with, "It's so boring!". From my perspective, they couldn't be further from the truth. Fishing represents so much more than being entertained. It's time in the wilderness with fresh air and solitude. It's time to think and ponder on life's problems.  It time to express gratitude and count your blessings. There is also the satisfaction of reading the water, observing a hatch and placing a lure or fly in the perfect spot. It's the excitement of the fish

Perfectly Wicked - A new take on an old fairy tale!

Guest Blogger Amanda Schultz Age 15 There she was…hair as black as night, lips as red as blood, skin as white as snow. Standing by the window, washing dishes, whistling while she worked. Snow White. I shudder with disgust every time I hear her name. What kind of a name is that anyway? “Snow White”. Gahhh, it’s a name that practically begs to be made fun of. Yet, there she goes, frolicking around like she owns the Enchanted Forest. No. I’m the Queen. I’m in charge. My magic mirror was mistaken. I’m the Fairest of them all, not that sorry excuse for a princess. One bite from my poison apple and that air-head will be so ugly not even her mother could love her. And I will be the Fairest once again! I suppose that I should rewind a little bit. It wasn’t always a competition between Snow White and me. In fact, back in the day, we had a nice little system going on. I would rule the kingdom and practice my magic, while Snow did the dishes and tended the garden. She stayed out of my w

An Open Letter to Parents Researching RedCliff Ascent

By Stephen C. Schultz "We will be known forever by the tracks we leave." Having been raised in Oregon, I spent the majority of my childhood and teenage year’s steelhead fishing the coastal waters, climbing the Middle Sister in the Cascade Mountain Range, drifting the McKenzie River and hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.  I have mentioned to friends, family and colleagues on many occasions;   “From a therapeutic standpoint, there is no better place to have a student’s issues manifested quickly than in a wilderness setting.” The question then becomes, “Why do therapeutic issues rise to the surface in an Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare program like RedCliff Ascent ?” Throughout the years of teenage development, most teens spend a lot of time with friends. These friends think the same, dress the same, act the same, listen to the same music and sometimes get into the same types of trouble. Some teens also develop patterns of communication and manipulation