Brooklyn Heights

For the past few months, I’ve been trying something new…

I’m definitely the type of person who can get — and stay — in her head. Are you? Is everyone? After a hectic workday, I would come home but still feel keyed up, running through my mental checklist, feeling compelled to check my phone, and having a hard time being in the moment.

But nowadays, when the boys and I are hanging at the playground, or Alex and I are walking to a restaurant, I’ll stop to look around. REALLY LOOK. I’ll notice a neighbor returning from the store with a rotisserie chicken. A garbage truck grumbling down the street. Halloween decorations that nail it. A dog careening around the corner.

It’s funny how such a small thing — taking a moment to take it all in — can pull you right out of your head and set you up for a calmer, more present, more relaxed evening. After a busy afternoon, it’s like splashing water on your face.

And, honestly, seeing the world is just nice. “I do get a deep pleasure from looking,” says artist David Hockney. “I mean, I can look at a little puddle on a road in Yorkshire and just have the rain falling on it and think it’s marvelous.”

Do you ever truly look at the world around you? It sounds like such a non-event, but my life has felt really different because of it.

Don’t be these dudes!

P.S. Slow parenting, and a trick for worriers.

(Photo from my Instagram. Illustration by Liam Walsh/The New Yorker. David Hockney quote via 3 Chairs).