Today I am writing you a permission slip, if you think you really need it. (You don't).
It's your ticket to letting yourself relax, care less about what some people think of you, and notice more of the world right outside your door.
Because sometimes, that means looking like the crazy neighbor.
You know, the one who is lying flat down on the front lawn to take a picture of a ladybug climbing on a blade of grass, when the other neighbors are driving off to work, hunched over in their cars, disapproving scowls aimed in your direction. Or maybe they're just immersed in their own worries or petty miseries, too caught up in their personal dramas to notice you lying flat down on the front lawn.
Maybe that lady who is joylessly tugging her dog down the street will see you--the one who is yelling into her cell phone at somebody who needs a good chewing-out. Maybe she will stop mid-sentence to wonder what on earth you are doing. Or maybe (very likely) she'll be too wrapped up in her own concerns to notice you.
Because that's another important thing you learn as you get older and wiser: Not everybody is watching you.
And even if a few of them are...so what?
(Really. So what?)
Is it worth missing a once-in-a-lifetime picture of a seemingly supersonic hummingbird barely one foot away from you? If you run inside and put on "proper clothes", that hummingbird will be long-gone by the time you re-emerge.
Go ahead, be that eccentric fellow who is wearing his bathrobe outside as he walks around barefoot in the grass, sipping his coffee and admiring the clouds. The one who notices there's a hawk soaring way up high, drifting effortlessly on the ever-so-slight breeze that barely ruffles the leaves.
Be the wacky neighbor who climbs up into the kids' treehouse while the kids are off at school. (A treehouse is a great place to read a good book.)
I hereby give you permission to whisper "hi there" to a squirrel who has stopped mid-scamper, wondering who you are and what you're doing out here in the yard in your pajamas. Shouldn't you be back inside, scrubbing a pot or folding some laundry? Nope, not right now. There's a squirrel who is three feet away from you, head cocked to the side in wonder. Take this moment to gaze right back.
Be that nutty neighbor who saves a beetle by flipping it back over and watching it fly away until it's only the tiniest speck in the big blue sky.
Shed your veneer of cool; let go of the need to be "normal."
You don't want to miss this one and only moment.
Before you go...
LAST CALL and just a few spots left for my brand-new online photography course "Beyond Auto Mode: How to Really Work Your DSLR Camera." Join students from around the world--class starts this Monday, June 13, 2016. For all the course details and registration, click here.
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