Why I Have Become Addicted To These Moments – You Will Be Too

Blog 14 MaySomething extraordinary happened last week. And the week before. I want more of it. Much more. It’s addictive. At work. And in life. Are you getting enough of this? Here’s what it is, and where to get it.

First, my colleague, out of the blue, made his world famous snapper pie last Monday. He cooked it in the industrial oven in the building’s kitchen, and served it up to our small team of five. From our hectic realities, we suddenly sat quietly, focused on food, talked, communed. Just for 45 minutes. Then, two days later, I received a letter. Yes- l…e…t…t…e…r. It contained sad news- the passing in the UK of an aged Aunt with whom I’d lost touch. And was written with care and great respect by someone I did not know. I re-read the letter a dozen times, felt its tactility, have filed it away.

I know this all sounds maybe a bit obtuse, but it is haunting me. You see, I loved those moments. And want more of them. I want more of:

Moments of Real

Think about it. ‘Moments of real.’ I just find that so powerful. I heard the expression- the idea- in a training session I ran in Singapore a month ago. It has sat with me- but without context or a place. And then I found it in the snapper pie, and letter from Tom.

Read on if you can be bothered. Be warned. I won’t be sharing ‘The Top Three Tips To…’ or ‘Five Ways To Revolutionize….’…. I will though be trying hard to share this powerful thought- a thought that is front and centre for me today. And the more I get it, the more I want it.

Moments of real.

How many do you have in your week, those moments of real? Not the pressured meetings, phone calls, emails, sms messages, Facebook alerts, Instagrams, Snapchats. But real moments of connection- with clients, family, friends, nature, art, of a quieter, calmer, more connected, more personal time.

Here are moments of real I have relished these past two weeks- since I started aching for them:

  • The conversation I had with Alan over breakfast at our café meeting place- he’s been a client for years, a friend almost as long, and our conversations are as real as they get.
  • Hand-writing a ‘thank you’ note to a stranger (introduced to me by Possums reader and friend Oscar), who made the effort to visit me, and tell me all about something I knew nothing about.
  • Driving colleague Alex from work to my home mid-morning, and then the two of us ran (shuffled) for more than an hour around the harbour foreshore- talking, marveling, making plans.
  • Playing dominos with an 11 year old (and cheating).
  • Spending an hour with Michelle- a PR industry colleague and competitor for 25 hours, catching up, sharing war stories from the trenches of today’s industry- no posturing, no intrigue, no agenda… just sharing, respect, connection.
  • My chat with another colleague, where we actually told each other the truth to the question: “How are you?” We sat in deep couches at our Kent St offices and talked an hour, and exposed our true feelings. Got to say- it felt great.
  • Every morning walking out on to my deck- before the sun fully rises- and feeling the wind. There are messages for us in the wind at dawn (not an original thought – I read that 10 days ago- but here’s the rub- it IS TRUE. Give it a go).
  • Standing in a bookstore thinking hard and with real intent about the right Mother’s Day purchase for a 97 year old great-grandmother.
  • Eating snapper pie.
  • Opening a letter- written to me with thought, respect and kindness.

No technology. No pressure. No secret intent. No personal gain. Just Moments Of Real.

I doubt this will be a heavily re-tweeted blog post, or shared widely on LinkedIn. It’s the ‘Four Lessons That Will Change Everything….’ posts that seem to get ‘socialized.’

But that’s okay- so long as at least one of you Possumites got something out of Moments of Real. I know I do. I have not fully nailed it yet… but know I want more of it, every day, in all aspects of my life. It’s dawn now. 6.18 am. The gum trees are moving. Time to take in the wind’s message for me. Moments of Real. What does it say to you? Give it a try.

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51 Responses to Why I Have Become Addicted To These Moments – You Will Be Too

  1. Sam May 14, 2014 at 10:22 am #

    I’m with you Chris. Over the last 6 months some mates and I have made (semi)compulsory fishing trips at the crack of dawn on saturday mornings. It’s really just an excuse to grab a coffee, see the sun come up and meditate through a fishing-line, but it’s changed my weeks for sure.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

      Sam- what a great way to get those Moments of Real regularly. Chris

  2. Alex May 14, 2014 at 10:25 am #

    Perfect timing Chris – busy and stressful times mean these Moments of Real are forgotten or not appreciated. The effect these Moments of Real can have on ourselves and sometimes, more importantly, others – is a powerful thing. Thanks for sharing – I know I will be sharing your post with the team.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:53 pm #

      Alex- thanks for that. Chris

  3. pamela souvlis May 14, 2014 at 10:27 am #

    totally get that and like the phrase. My moment of real is when I sat with a dear friend, a glass of wine, at dinner about to discuss the world’s problems knowing this is about as good as it gets in life – being with people who care about you and make you laugh. now sounds lame

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

      Not lame at all Pamela. Knowing who you most love to have conversations with and then ensuring you have them- well, that’s Real isn’t it?! Chris

  4. William Masson May 14, 2014 at 10:31 am #

    Perfectly said…and it had to be said. I’ve restructured my career and in many ways my life in order to strive for more of “moments of real”. I didn’t have a name or term for it, but you’ve now given me a name for what I’m striving for.
    It’s not easy to achieve regularly, but I do believe that Moments of Real is what life should actually be about.
    Do we only realise that when we reach a certain age?

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:53 pm #

      Perhaps William. Certainly I have only really started thinking about it in the past couple of years, and I am of a certain age! Chris

  5. Hayley Buckner May 14, 2014 at 10:35 am #

    This has made me think, pause and reflect. My “moments of real” will certainly be further enjoyed, relished and cherished thanks to reading this blog. Thank you!

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:58 pm #

      Thanks Hayley. Chris

  6. Kate May 14, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    One of your best posts. Loved it.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:55 pm #

      Thanks a lot Kate. Chris

  7. Ben Stokes May 14, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    For me it’s the ability to truly live in the moment… which is a dying art in the age of hyper-communication… but one truly worth striving for. Good article to prompt us to see the forest for the trees 🙂

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

      Thanks Ben. Chris

  8. Bianca May 14, 2014 at 10:51 am #

    Chris, I LOVED this. Looks like I’m setting my alarm a bit earlier tomorrow…

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:54 pm #

      Thanks Bianca. Chris

  9. Leo May 14, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    Brilliant post Chris – I now have a name for my daily 5:15 swim with three treasured friends!

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

      Good one Leo!!!

  10. Adrianne Nixon May 14, 2014 at 11:55 am #

    I, for one, will definitely be sharing this post Chris. Because I completely agree with you and in fact, I believe writing a letter to someone is a gift. It’s something I strive to make time for a few times a year … but also as a very green new small business owner, it’s the moments of connection, encouragement, support and quite frankly humanity that make it all worth while. I’m lucky – I get these from people a lot. And each one is enormously meaningful and important to me. In fact, I got one from my hairdresser this morning who offered me a free cut and colour to help support me as I get started! She’s got a client … and a friend … for life. Thanks Chris…. for keeping it real.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:56 pm #

      Thanks Adrianne. Good story and insight. Hang in there and keep the faith! Chris

  11. Jim May 14, 2014 at 1:04 pm #

    Terrific Chris. Life’s a bit tough at the moment at home (wife + kids + grrr) and work isn’t easy. So last week I took a book (made of paper) to a local restaurant and ate my favourite dish and read for ages (a tip I read that Bill Bryson does) and it is cleansing. Happy days are simple days.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

      Good for you Jim- I understand exactly what you did. Wish I could have been at the next table! Chris (What was that favourite meal?)

      • Jim May 21, 2014 at 10:27 am #

        Vietnamese Hot & Sour soup , every time.

  12. Richard de Crespigny May 14, 2014 at 1:14 pm #

    Great blog Chris.

    My 24 year old son Alexander is currently overseas conducting work experience for six months and just sent his top 20 friends hand written ink letters in wax sealed envelopes. We all felt privileged to receive his personal gift.

    Whether you are a vendor or customer, it’s always the personal interaction that bonds friends together and customers to their clients.

    Its easy to change communications in your lifestyle, relationships and at work only when you appreciate HOW these personal bonds make up our human condition and thus WHY they are are so important.

    When you understand the WHY, then it’s time to buy the 100 page best selling book “FISH” to understand their version of your “Moments of Real”:
    – turn up with the right attitude
    – present to your friends & customers, and
    – do something profound to make their day

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

      Thanks so much Richard. I guess you had your moment of real in the drinks celebrations you arranged for the crew of that crippled A380 you and your team piloted to safety a few years back. That bond has to be with all of you forever. Chris

  13. Tony Simms May 14, 2014 at 1:16 pm #

    Great post Chris. My real moment this week came I had the opportunity to thank a mentor. If we think back we have all had them through our careers. They encourage, cheer, rescue and occasionally kick our butts. They see our promise when other can’t and drag us up by the scruff of our necks when it all seems too hard. I’d encourage everyone to track down a mentor who probably thinks you have forgotten about them and simply say thank you.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

      Thanks Tony. That’s a very good idea. Chris

  14. Padraig (pod) OSullivan May 14, 2014 at 1:28 pm #

    Love it. Moments of real : A way to lead life.
    Sounds like a potential book / doco Chris….

    “Stories from people’s moments of real…”

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:01 pm #

      Great idea- am on chapter Two already POD!

  15. Tony Spencer-Smith May 14, 2014 at 3:08 pm #

    Congrats Chris, pure poetry. What a surprise it was, a complete change of pace. In an era where people don’t seem to feel alive unless they are Tweeting, texting, taking selfies, dominating meetings or rushing about, your idea of stopping to appreciate what is real in life is so very necessary. Glad you took the time to write this piece.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

      Thanks Tony- appreciated. Chris

  16. Caz Pollock May 14, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

    Wow, by far the best post you have ever written – it really cuts to the heart of what life is truly all about – recognising and celebrating all the precious moments and experiences that sincerely touch your soul – I will now take notice of the messages been whispered in the wind. Thank-you as you have now set the tone for my day.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:06 pm #

      Thanks Caz- appreciated. Chris

  17. Jayne Albiston May 14, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

    Your best post yet Chris. I had a wake up call the other week which has caused me to pause and to re-discover moments of real that I have been missing or that I had been running so fast I had not even taken time to acknowledge or enjoy. Thanks for this. 🙂

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:06 pm #

      Thanks Jayne. Glad to hear it. Chris

  18. Alison May 14, 2014 at 7:54 pm #

    LOVE it. Love your messages Chris. Need more of it in my life down here at the tip of Africa. Your post made up my mind to go with a dear friend to her doctor on Friday morning in another city, she may be getting some devastating health news. I will just be there for her. I will just sit with her for however long she needs me. it will be real.

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:07 pm #

      Good for you Alison. That makes me really happy- that you are making the call to do that for your friend. Well done. Chris

  19. Alan Claire May 14, 2014 at 8:52 pm #

    Real moment..reading this blog! Thanks for this one Chris it is particularly resonant. I am lucky to have a very young family and I get lots of Real moments daily from helping my 5 y/o learn to read to simply marvelling at my 10 month old when he smiles at me…something for me to work on is to have real time at work

    • Chris Savage May 14, 2014 at 10:07 pm #

      Thanks Alan! Chris

  20. Garth Agius May 16, 2014 at 9:28 am #

    Today, soft water, rising sun…just beautiful paddle….and after, looking out on the water from the club deck, reflecting on the paddle, brushing my teeth and getting dressed for work….my real moment…..breathing in and knowing how lucky I am! Then I have another real moment…..what’s happening today, who am I meeting, where will I get more business from, what bills do I need to pay. As long as we keep having the meaningful ones, the ‘other’ moments will be easier. Brilliant post Chris, thanks for sharing this thought, will keep it front and centre!

    • Chris Savage May 16, 2014 at 11:59 am #

      Thanks Garth!

  21. PM May 16, 2014 at 9:42 am #

    I absolutely adore this post. I’ve been trying to incorporate more still and honest moments in my life for a while, it’s great to have a name for them now.
    One of the best moments has been when I’ve actually convinced friends to turn off their phones and enjoy the sunshine, wind and smell of the ocean over a coffee.

    • Chris Savage May 16, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

      PM- thanks. Turning off phones a very good idea! Chris

  22. Karen May 16, 2014 at 11:43 am #

    Great to be reminded about what’s important in life – can get so caught up with the ‘urgent’ and forget what’s really important!

    • Chris Savage May 16, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

      Thanks Karen!

  23. ross clennett May 17, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

    Thanks Chris, this was the right post at the right time. This week I received a Thank You card from parents of an ex-girlfriend of my teenage years. Tragically she died suddenly earlier this year, aged 46 and I sent a With Sympathy card to her parents, whom I greatly respected. Just reading their appreciative note to me, and feeling their pain and sadness was a moment such as you described, very raw but very real and I felt strangely grateful for it. Now I know why.

    • Chris Savage May 19, 2014 at 9:18 am #

      Thanks Ross. A great moment of real. Chris

  24. Lloyd Prescott May 19, 2014 at 10:44 am #

    I guess if reading this brings tears….I should be finding some more moments of real. I miss them. The busier and more hectic and heavier life gets, the less of them there seem to be. I give the business the priority too often.

    • Chris Savage May 19, 2014 at 11:18 am #

      Me too Lloyd. Chris

  25. September 17, 2014 at 8:55 pm #

    I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post
    was great. I don’t know who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you are not already 😉 Cheers!

    • Chris Savage September 18, 2014 at 10:01 am #

      Thanks Betty!

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