Maria’s Sunday Paper: The Power of Timing in Our Lives
Not too long ago, someone asked me why I hadn’t published my book, “I’ve Been Thinking…,” sooner. After all, I’ve been writing these essays and sharing them in The Sunday Paper for years, so I could have easily published it a year or two ago.
But, as I told that person, and as I’ve told others on this journey, I honestly couldn’t have put it out any sooner. This book came out when it was supposed to for me. It came at just the right time.
I think so many of us are in a rush these days. We’re in a rush to get on with things. A rush to get over things. A rush to be where we think we are supposed to be.
But, if I’ve learned anything, it’s that stuff happens when it’s supposed to in our lives, not always when we think it should. At least that’s been the case in my life.
When I started my partnership with Equinox Sports Clubs four years ago, I wanted Move for Minds to be a company-wide initiative for them right off the bat. But, they weren’t there yet, and truth be told, neither was I. I was trying to rush something that wasn’t ready yet.
Now, we both are ready and this year, Equinox expanded Move for Minds – the initiative of my nonprofit The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement – from eight clubs last year to now, all 93 of their clubs across the globe. I’m deeply grateful for their commitment in a way that I probably wouldn’t have been had it come any sooner. We both worked hard to get it to this place, and when we kicked Move for Minds off Saturday in New York City, I knew it had happened at just the right time.
I’m also grateful to NBC News for kicking off Move for Minds this year on The Today Show Plaza. That, too, happened not when I wanted it to, but when we were both ready. (If you didn’t catch my segment, I encourage you to check it out here. It’s filled with valuable Alzheimer’s information and preventative tips you can implement today.)
Timing is everything. In relationships. In politics (Election Day is this Tuesday in many states, including my own, so go vote people!) In turning dreams into realities. It’s also important for getting over old stuff and, as I said last week, for getting ready for new beginnings.
How we spend our time – and how we view spending our time – can make the time we have either a lesson in the making, or a waste of our most precious resource.
Time is something none of us get back. We all have the same amount of hours in a day, but we don’t all get the same amount of time here on earth.
So this week, I am choosing to look at my relationship with time in a new way. I’m choosing to look at it as my friend, and as something that is happening FOR me, no to me or against me.
I’m blessed to be the age that I am, as others I love weren’t given the same gift. I’m also blessed to be working. I’m blessed to have a mission to move the needle on Alzheimer’s, and I’m blessed that so many people, for whom I have the greatest respect and admiration, are giving their time to help me move that needle. (Check out our powerful conversation from Move for Minds NYC below in today’s Sunday Paper, and then tune into our conversation featuring other A-list Alzheimer’s experts on my Facebook page today at 11am ET in Boston. We’ll also be doing it again next weekend in LA and San Francisco — all in honor of Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month.)
I’m grateful to friends who have stood by me and allowed me the time to get to where I am today. Time has given me perspective over the years. Yes, it’s given me wrinkles. Yes, it’s bruised my heart and grayed my hair. And, yes, it’s even rattled my confidence in some areas that I’m not going to get into here. But it’s also given me wisdom, courage, a strong resolve, a new relationship with acceptance, and a belief in myself that perhaps could have only come with time.
And so, today’s Sunday Paper is dedicated to the importance of time – yours, mine and ours. Below, we feature the voices of leading Alzheimer’s and brain health researchers who say that now is the time to think about your cognitive health. We also feature Patti Davis, who looks back on time with her father Ronald Reagan and reflects on the anniversary of his passing from Alzheimer’s. We also feature the voices of other Architects of Change who will remind you why time is so valuable and then teach you how to make the most of it.
So today, let’s embrace our precious moments of time — this resource that we all share. Don’t let a minute go by without cherishing the time that you have. After all, it’s something you will never get back.
“I’ve Been Thinking… Reflections, Prayers and Meditations for a Meaningful Life” has now been on The New York Times Bestsellers list for three months straight. Yippee, yippee! If you haven’t read it yet, consider it for your summer reading list. It doesn’t take a lot of time to read, and it might help you with the way you look at your time.
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WHAT OTHERS HAVE BEEN THINKING
I’ve been thinking about the individuals featured below and how their views on the world rise above the noise…
SUPERSTAR BRAIN HEALTH EXPERTS TEACH US HOW TO MAKE OUR MINDS LAST A LIFETIME
June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. It’s also Move for Minds Month – an initiative of my nonprofit The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement and Equinox Sports Clubs to educate the public on cognitive health. On Saturday, I was thrilled to be joined by five leading brain health and caregiving experts — Architects of Change Dan Gasby, Lisa Mosconi, Sheila Klehm, Wendy Suzuki and Bob Roth — at a special gathering for Move For Minds in New York City. Watch our important conversation that features groundbreaking information on women’s cognitive health. then learn how to support our efforts this month at www.moveforminds.org.
PATTI DAVIS REFLECTS ON WHAT SHE LEARNED FROM HER FATHER’S LIFE AND DEATH FROM ALZHEIMER’S
On June 5, 2004, former President Ronald Reagan passed away from Alzheimer’s. In a moving essay she wrote exclusively for the Sunday Paper, Reagan’s daughter, Architect of Change Patti Davis, reflects on why June 5th, the anniversary of his passing, is her “Day of Reverence.”
WELLNESS EXPERT MARZ HILL EXPLAINS WHY ‘TIMING IS EVERYTHING’ IN OUR LIVES
In this exclusive ongoing Health Reboot series Architect of Change and health expert Marz Hill of ph360 explains how to optimize our “perfect timing” in life to have more joy, more fun and more love in our everyday lives.
TIMOTHY SHRIVER EXPLAINS WHY IT’S TIME WE LISTEN TO MELANIA
Before you react to the title of this essay, give it a full read. This piece written by my brother Timothy for The Washington Post explores why the First Lady’s “Be Best” initiative has serious policy implications: “… the issue of how to transform our schools into places that use evidence-based practices to support social and emotional learning in parallel with academic learning.”
96-YEAR-OLD FASHION ICON IRIS APFEL SHARES HOW SHE MAKES THE MOST OF HER TIME BY CHERISHING EVERY MOMENT
Style icon Iris Apfel has a new book out, “Iris Apfel: Accidental Icon,” a lavishly illustrated collection of Apfel’s anecdotes and observations. Sunday Paper contributor Edie Parker recently caught up with the irreverent 96-year-old author to discuss her book, her life, and her philosophy.
FINANCIAL EXPERT GRANT SABATIER EXPLAINS WHY WE SHOULD PRIORITIZE EARNING TIME — OVER MONEY — IN OUR LIVES
This is a compelling read by financial expert Grant Sabatier. In this piece he shares with the Sunday Paper, Grant offers practical advice on how we can make the most of the time we have to save for our future.
THESE HUMANITARIANS ARE COURAGEOUSLY COMMITTING THEIR TIME TO SAVING THE LIVES OF OTHERS — AGAINST ALL ODDS
This week, our Architects of Change of the Week are three nominees for this year’s prestigious Aurora Prize, granted by the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative. The Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity selected Mr. Kyaw Hla Aung, Mrs. Sunitha Krishnan and Fr. Héctor Tomás González Castillo for their exceptional courage, far-reaching impact and endless commitment to preserving human life and advancing humanitarian causes in the face of adversity.
NEWS ABOVE THE NOISE
News stories that caught our eye and got us thinking…
1. Kindergarten Class Practices Kindness Every Day: This story brings a smile to my face. A smart and compassionate Texas kindergarten teacher has instilled a routine in which classmates make eye-to-eye contact, shake hands and smile at each other every day. Watching this in action will surely make you smile.
2. How People in the Workplace Have Been Affected by the #MeToo Movement: I found this to be an eye-opening piece initiated by NBC News’ opinion section, @NBCNewsTHINK. For one week, Americans in various professions were asked how the movement has changed their interactions at work.
3. Self-Criticism Can Take a Toll on Our Minds and Bodies: My daughter, Christina, brought this article to my attention. This insightful piece reminds us to ease up on our self-criticism, which can have a negative effect on our minds and bodies.
4. Reading Books and Playing Games May Help Prevent Dementia: This is a fascinating study published in JAMA Psychiatry, which examined more than 15,500 healthy people, ages 65 and older, whose mental health was tracked for about five years.
5. Positive Questions to Ask Your Child at the End of the School Year: It’s so important to keep your child’s school experience positive and upbeat. This is a great thought piece that offers your child an opportunity to reflect on the year, what they’ve learned and what they can do differently next year.
6. ‘#GoodNewsRuhles’: MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle Features The Sunday Paper on TV: On Friday, I had the pleasure of appearing on my friend Stephanie Ruhle’s show on MSNBC. We discussed the state of Alzheimer’s and caregiving in America, as well as The Sunday Paper!.Stephanie recognized us for sharing news “above the noise” each week, and I want to applaud her for doing the same on her show. Moving forward, I hope to feature some of her “good news” stories here with you.
SOMETHING TO TRY THIS WEEK
JOIN ME AND EXERCISE YOUR BRAIN: This week, I’m proud to announce my partnership with Brain HQ and the launch of our new program to raise the bar on women’s brain health. Women’s brains have a special journey, with different experiences and challenges from those of men. Together with BrainHQ, we’re now offering women a practical and scientifically-proven tool that can improve their cognitive health and can fit easily into their busy lives.
SOMETHING TO WATCH THIS WEEKEND
“The Migraine Solution”: This weekend, this program I hosted for PBS debuts on public stations across the country. In this show, experts and patients debunk myths and discuss the best practices for managing migraines. If you suffer from them like I do, I encourage you to check this out.
On this Sunday as we talk about time, our Sunday Paper ambassador Lisa Waschka found this meditation online and shared it with us. It’s perfect as we reflect about being right where we need to be.
INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEK AHEAD
IF YOU CARE ABOUT YOUR BRAIN HEALTH, TUNE IN FOR THESE INFORMATIVE AND INSPIRING CONVERSATIONS
JOIN MARIA AS MOVE FOR MINDS BEGINS! SIGN UP TODAY!
Join us throughout June:
This initiative of The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement tours the nation this June for a series of events that raise awareness of the importance of brain health and raise funds for important women-based Alzheimer’s research.
Join us at Move for Minds and leave feeling educated, empowered and inspired to take care of your brain!