About six months ago I became really aware of how little time is left before my children start leaving the nest and I made the decision to savor the opportunities that I still have to spontaneously spend time with them. Since it seemed that my phone was the number one activity that prevented me from experiencing maximum closeness with my family, I decided to begin consciously putting my phone down and sitting with the people that I love whenever I sensed that they were reaching out to me.

Sometimes it’s still difficult for me to stop what I’m doing and give my full attention, but the result has been incredible. In the past few months my two teenagers have become so much more affectionate and open with me. We have spent hours sitting close together talking about all kinds of things and both of them have started approaching me out of the blue to give me a hug or a kiss. At the very time that I was sure they would be pushing me away I feel closer than ever to these awesome people.  (It’s made a difference in my marriage too.)

What do you do to be present with the people that are important to you?