Why You Must Treat Moments With Your Children Like Fleeting Sand


Sifting Coronado Island sand through your fingers is addictive. I know because I got hooked this past weekend when our family took a trip to San Diego, Calif., so that Julie could present her research and lead a roundtable discussion at a conference for biology teachers. (By the way, she passed her dissertation defense today with flying colors. Yay, honey!!!)

But the sand presents a trap. The little crystalline particles rest on your fingers for a moment and then, pulled down by gravity and the weight of a thousand other particles on top of them, they collapse onto the ground. The fleeting enjoyment of the sensation of sifting sand must be repeated over and over again or else it is gone for good. All that remains are memories.

So too is time with our children and other loved ones. Billionaire and family man Jesse Itzler shines the brightest light I’ve heard on the subject in months in his latest interview with the EntreLeadership podcast.

Itzler spent 15 days at a monastery and came away from the experience with a completely new appreciation for time—and the short moments that together make up our lives.

Whether you are sifting sand or spending an hour in the evening with your children, treat it with the respect it deserves. Sifting sand has limited value, but time with those you care about? It’s impossible to price.

Fail to do it again and again and you will be left, in some future time, to question why you didn’t invest more of yourself in those moments. Find special moments again and again, and you will be fully alive—as long as you are present and can set aside the task list.

Nurture your child, not your task list. Only one of them has the capacity to remember you when you are gone. Make the memories count.