It’s a wonder we get anything done around here. I am easily distracted, as is my husband and our kids. We joke that we suffer from Shiny, Bright Light Syndrome…focused on the task at hand only until a more sparkly, dazzling something or other comes along.

Case in point: I had planned to finally sit down this afternoon and write notes for a presentation I’m giving at a conference this weekend. I accomplished the sitting down part after ordering a  latte, a muffin and a glass of water. I opened up my laptop. Set my stuff out on the table. Took a deep breath with my fingers hovering over the keyboard. And there it was: a shiny, bright light. Literally.

My glass of water was set at just the right spot, smack in the middle of a ray of sunshine, casting a golden beam of light that bent every which way and lit up even the shadow of the glass. I watched it, took a picture,  and just sat there with my little beam of light. The more I focused on it, the more I noticed other sights and sounds around me: a table of laughing women, a four year old  leaping with excitement, spring birds at the window. I eventually had to leave, with my speech still unfinished, but with a giddy sense of wonder and gratitude. That little light had helped me just be and appreciate the moment I was in.

Sometimes I think the universe sends us these shiny bright lights, waves big red flags, blows papers right out of our hands, plays meaningful songs on the radio, creates traffic jams at midnight – all in an effort to wake us up, slow us down, and force us to pay attention to the magic around us. Mission accomplished.

Note: This post first appeared here on March 26, 2010. Since I’m spending lots of time leading my blogging e-course right now, I’ve decided to periodically share some favorite retro posts from past years. But I’d love to know what you think of it today