We all know the stuff that makes life worth living – love, family, friends, pets, experiences, a feeling of belonging and of contribution. This, I’m sure we can all agree on.
But have you ever thought of how things – literally, things – make you happy?
For a moment, suspend any judgment that may have come up when you read that line. Yes, I am suggesting that we love “things.” But not from a materialistic point of view, and not just any things. Consider only things that fill us with joy. Simple, everyday joy.
I believe there are things in our lives . . . in our homes . . . maybe even in our offices that bring a special happiness to our lives.
For example, in the image at the top of this post, I’ve included a few of my favorite things (I can hear Julie Andrews now).
I really love these things. They make me happy, content, satisfied every . . . single . . . day.
- My morning paper over coffee in a favorite mug – enjoyed in the quiet of the early morning . . . pure bliss.
- Shower gel that smells like heaven to me . . . I can’t wait to take a shower and feel enveloped in its delicious fragrance.
- The chandelier in our dining room that took me a year to find, and was prompted by a dear friend who suggested that we needed “a signature piece” for that room, much to Michael’s chagrin. I love the piece and the memory.
- My very loyal laptop . . . never far from my side, the holder of my thoughts, the source of so much inspiration and connection
- And a jar full of flowers or greenery from my own garden – joy in bloom from right outside my door. Aaah.
All of these things add a special happiness to a plain old Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday . . . you get my drift.
Call these things mindfulness reminders to be “in the moment” more in our lives or talismans that charm our daily routines, the point is that it’s OK to feel love for our things. In fact, it’s a healthier way to spend money than to simply acquire stuff just to have more stuff.
In the very popular bestseller, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, author Marie Kondo, tells us to use love as a barometer for deciding to keep or discard items as we clean out and organize our home. I think she’s really on to something.
How much better off would we be, both financially and emotionally, if we were so present in our purchasing behavior that we only ever purchased non-essential items that we really LOVED. Well, that would certainly slow the outgoing money train down, wouldn’t it?
And how content would we always be if we could look around our homes and our closets and feel completely satisfied with what’s in there.
So why not start by recognizing and mindfully appreciating those things that come to mind easily as “joy and happiness givers” in our every day, ordinary day lives.
Once at a dinner party, I asked a group of friends to name 10 items in their lives that they really loved. Everyone had a great time telling the story or reason behind each special thing. Here are a few that made the list:
The morning paper
A favorite tea mug
The car that finally came home
A certain bed
New sauté pan
A special piece of jewelry
A special piece of art
How about you? What are those things in your world that you really love and that add to your everyday happiness?
Till next time,