Capturing moments seems to be the way of life these days. We are so lucky to live in a time where there are so many different options for documenting our days and recording snapshots of our experiences. We are able to have memories that live on through our photographs, our videos, and our words.
Photo by Studio Eiler @studioeiler
I believe there is a difference between capturing memories and making memories. Capturing memories should be a snapshot. The process of capturing a moment should not take very long, nor should it take you away from the actual moment. So many of us have the intention of living in the moment (myself included), but it becomes conflicting when we want to document that moment in order to make sure that we remember it forever.
I believe that taking time to capture a memory can be a form of mindfulness. When you recognize a moment for being one that you want to capture forever, you are truly a part of it and are noticing that it is special and worth remembering. You might notice the way you are feeling, the people you are with, the smell in the air, or the space that is surrounding you.
Make Memories and Capture Memories
In a recent Instagram post I asked people to comment their intention for the new year. So many responses included being present and living more in the moment. Since I am also working on being more present but also love looking back on memories that I take time to capture, I decided that I had to come up with ways that we could do both!
I have created a list of some quick ways to help us capture a moment in time, but also not be away from that moment for too long. Whether you like to write, take photos, or are in love with the memories that come from a song, there are so many ways to document our days!
1. Memories In The Music
In my December Edition of Citrus & Sun Moments I talked about how challenging myself to create a new playlist every month this past year helped capture new memories attached to music. So many of us, including myself, associate certain songs or artists with certain memories. Spotify makes it easy to create new playlists and has hundreds of new songs available each day to browse and discover!
Each month I create a new playlist with a title that might seem random but has meaning to me at the time. As I hear songs that I love, I add them to the playlist right away. I usually end up with between 18-25 songs each month. That playlist is the soundtrack to my days throughout the month until it’s time to create a new one! It’s truly amazing how I can vividly see certain moments from that time period when I listen back to each playlist.
If you are a music lover, take a moment to save some songs that you’re really into right now! Create multiple playlists throughout the year that you can go back and listen to at any time. Think of it as sort of a “musical diary” of your new memories!
2. 1 Second Everyday (App)
What if you could take one moment from your day and create a collection of seconds that told the story of your year? The answer? “1 Second Everyday!” This app allows you to create a video diary of small snapshots of your days over time!
How it works: Upload a new photo/video clip to the app and add it to your timeline every day. This works especially well with live photos because you get that quick movement that adds a little personality to the clip! When you choose to finish you are left with a montage of moments from each day of the year!
All you have to do is snap a quick picture of what you are doing and then you are done! You can even upload it later when you an extra minute. You can also create multiple projects at one time. Create a video diary of moments from a trip or from an entire summer! Chuck experimented with this app last year and absolutely loved its simplicity and the ability it gave him to capture bits and pieces from our year. You can check out his video down below =)
3. Planner aka Memory Collector
I use my planner as a tool to help me stay organized and set goals, but I also use it as a memory collector. My Sundays are usually spent filling out my planner with goals for my job and my blog, errands I need to run, and people I want to connect with that week. I also go back into my planner at the end of every day and jot down anything interesting that happened, a quote that inspired me, or an unexpected thing that might have happened. Over time this little book turns into a record/scrapbook of my year that I can look back on, and it takes less than 5 minutes each day!
If you use a planner, you already have what you need to make this a daily habit. Make it a part of your nightly routine to go back and add something that happened in your day, even if it was a not-so-good experience. I have been obsessed with Passion Planner for the past 3 years, but I would love to hear your planner picks!
4. Reflectly (App)
A journal is an obvious way to capture and reflect on moments from your day, but if you’re not into the whole paper/pencil practice, Reflectly might be a great option for you! This app is very similar to a journal in that it allows you space to write about your day plus so much more.
You begin by rating your day and then choosing an aspect of your day caused that rating (work, food, family, relationships, travel, friends, etc). You then have space to elaborate (or not) on what happened that day. This could be as simple as one sentence. The app then asks you to choose how you felt throughout the day (happy, blessed, good, confused, down, stressed, anxious, excited, lucky, etc). Finally, every day there is a new reflective question that you can answer. An example might be, “If no one could judge you, what would you differently?”
You can add a title for the day and a picture straight from your camera role. There is also a reminder option which allows you to set alarms throughout the day as reminders to do your entry. I love this app because it is a great way to quickly track how you are feeling and notice trends in how your days are going overall. It provides you with a snapshot of your captured feelings and their driving forces!
5. Print Those Photos!
Printed photos have definitely become a thing of my past and I am looking to bring them back! In one of my blog posts from the summer I talked about how I discovered that physically holding photographs and displaying them around my space has helped me appreciate and remember certain moments in my life. Constantly seeing photos from my past has also inspired the planning of new events and experiences for the future!
Try to make it a goal to print out photos from your phone or computer every 2-3 months. Change out your picture frames more often, make a vision board, or put your photos in a memory box to look through on a rainy day. Taking time to print out pictures is the perfect way to help those captured memories live on outside of the digital world.
6. Vacation Blog
Okay maybe this isn’t exactly “quick,” but keeping a vacation blog is such a fun way to capture moments from your travels! Free publishing platforms like Wix or Blogger are perfect spaces to build a simple online diary of your travel experiences! You can upload pictures and go into as much detail as you want about your daily adventures. Whether you share your moments or keep them private so only you can look back on them, a vacation blog is a great way to keep all of your travel memories in one space!
7. Weekly Lessons Jar
Typically it’s easy for us to remember the major events in our lives or big changes or experiences that help us learn more about ourselves. These moments are often remembered years after they actually happen because the were so monumental to our lives. But what about those small daily lessons that we learn while having a conversation, reading a book, or ending up in an unexpected situation? These are the moments that we might not even realize are shaping us over time.
Keeping a weekly lessons jar is a creative way to capture those moments that make us think or teach us something about ourselves. Jot down one lesson or discovery each week on a small piece of paper. Then fold it up and place it in some sort of container. Don’t forget to mark down the date you begin! In 365 days you will walk away with 52 ways that you have grown and changed throughout the year!
I believe there is a difference between capturing memories and making memories. Capturing memories should be a snapshot. The process of capturing a moment should not take very long, nor should it take you away from the actual moment. #citrusandsunmoments
8. Citrus and Sun Moments
Last year I started my monthly Citrus & Sun Moments blog posts. These posts have truly changed my life. Each month, I pick out five moments that stood out to me in some way. Read more about how I choose them and how they tie into the meaning of my blog here. Some are more major than others. Last month I wrote about eating the most fabulous bowl of vegetable chili.
The memories I choose are moments in time that brought me some sort of strong emotion, taught me something new about myself, or changed me in some way. I try to write them down as they happen and explain them in detail so that I can remember why and how they changed my life.
Find a place where you can record your own Citrus & Sun Moments! Write them down as they happen or take a photo. As you look back at each month you will have a collection of these special memories that brought you zest and light in a moment in time.
Extraordinary things happen in our lives every day. Some are significant and others are simple, but together these moments make up the lessons, the experiences, and the memories that shape us. These moments are fleeting, so zoom in on their presense and capture them in your mind and in your heart. Enjoy them, learn from them, and feel them as they sprinkle your memory with color and clarity. Remember them as the artwork of your life.
Now go out and capture some moments!!
Wishing you zest & light,