Over the weekend, I was lucky enough to have the chance to celebrate the marriage of two great friends, and the experience really made me reflect on weddings and life in general.  The more I thought about it, the more I began to realize that weddings can teach us a lot about life, and I wanted to share a few of these thoughts with all of you, in the hope that it may spark some new insights and inspirations in your life!

My first thought came during the reading of the vows.  As these two people looked into one another’s eyes and made sacred promises to each other, I could not help but think about how we all could benefit from taking the time to reaffirm our vows to the special others in our lives and, perhaps most importantly, to ourselves.  We need not wait for a special occasion, like a wedding, to remind the people we care about just what we our promising to provide them – just think about how good it would feel to hear someone say that they care about you and will protect you, guide you, etc.? Be that someone for a person you care about today!

Yet what about the vows we make to ourselves?  In my experiences, both personally and in my work as a life coach, often times these vows are the easiest to overlook.  Why is that? Well, I think it stems from the fact that our focus in life tends to be outward, but imagine the change that is possible when we shift that lens inward and bring the image of ourselves to the forefront of our minds?  I would encourage you all to try it! Simply find a mirror and spend five seconds looking into your own eyes. It may be a little awkward at first – we may look at ourselves in the mirror fairly often, but rarely do we find ourselves gazing into our own eyes – but power through that moment to hold some sustained eye contact with yourself.  Then, still while holding that eye contact, make some vows to yourself. These vows can be about anything! What kind of person you are going to be, what kind of actions you are going to take, what kind of care and support you’re going to provide yourself, etc. The most important part is simply taking the time to see and hear yourself make these vows.  There is something so powerful in this short experience, and I am confident it will help bring about more positivity in your life!

The next lesson I took away from this wedding is that celebration is essential.  When is the last time you congratulated yourself? When is the last time you championed a friend, colleague, family member, or partner?  No matter what your answers to these questions are, I’m guessing there is more room for celebration in your life! As everyone was laughing and talking around the dinner table at this wedding, I was struck by the sheer power of shared celebration.  Here was a group of people all gathered to cheer on the happy couple as they embarked on the next climb in their lives, and the couple absolutely glowed as they absorbed this positive energy. I was so thankful for these two friends bringing us all together in this way and for reminding me that celebrating life’s climb, from the smallest of steps to the highest of peaks, is so important to staying positive and moving forward.  What can you celebrate in your life and the lives of others today?

While I could go on and on about the magic of that evening, I think ending with this final takeaway is best.  That takeaway is simply this: love. Love was so present in every part of this wedding from start to finish, and while weddings are occasions that conjure up the thought of love easily, I think we all could and should be more active in recognizing the love in our lives.  That isn’t to say this recognition is always easy to do. In fact, some days, finding the love can be quite difficult, but please never stop searching.Remember that love is always within us and around us, and if it is tough to find, then consider working with a certified life coach who will help you recover it.  When you harness the power of love, as weddings undoubtedly show, anything is possible!