Be or not to be…. happy. That’s the question! I could start writing here a wide range of theories and research about what makes us happy and a lot more about the subject. Happiness is definitely a BIG deal, but the good news is that it is made out of small things. And this is what I want to share here with you all today, how small actions, changes, decisions, can make us feel good, very good.
Not long ago I read an article about small pleasures, but what really caught my attention were the comments posted by other readers describing how they treat themselves. Proving that you don’t need a lot of money, or a lot of time to have those little moments of delight that become great as part of your well-being.
Between my favourites on that list were “searching for new quotes and posting them around my apartment”, “planning a trip”, “getting into a freshly made bed with clean bed linen, clean pyjamas having just had a lovely bath.”, “writing (yes with pen and paper!) a letter to a friend”, “warm bubble baths with a good book or magazine”, “going back in time on my fb wall for old memories and smiles” and “making a new music playlist”.
I also have my own little pleasures, and some of them are drinking a fruit tea before going to sleep, lighting scented candles, doing my nails, baking or trying a new desert recipe, calling one of my good friends for a long chat, exfoliate my hands or my feet with moisturising and sugar, lying on the couch under a blanket while I read or watch a movie, organising my closet and drawers, drinking a virgin mojito, trying new hairstyles (even if I always use the same), or listening to a song I really like, again and again until I know the lyrics by heart 🙂 I love this one!
I found two of the comments on the list pretty inspiring: “writing postcards or short notes to 5 people from your past you are grateful for.” how good does it feel to thank someone for something you really appreciate?; “I also have a set of ‘nice things’ which are all written on small cards, I package them up into a pretty box, write an explanatory note and give them to people as a present – birthday, wedding or just when they’re feeling a little down. I usually phrase it as a ‘random reminder’ of the beautiful things in the world.” nice one! eh? there is no biggest satisfaction than giving… so, here is the full list with nice ideas worth to try whenever you want to have a ‘me moment’ or even better schedule it as a new routine every week, month, year or after a stressful day, it will make you feel great!
- “Pinterest, warm bubble baths with a good book or magazine, a good fb chat with a favorite friend, cooking something exciting or new, playing backgammon, reading favorite blogs, going out with my camera, collecting seashells and stones, Instagraming, making a cocktail, going back in time on my fb wall for old memories and smiles, staring at the sea looking for otters and seals, a proper dinner at the table, flickering smelling great candles, daydreaming about favorite times and hopeful future scenarios.”
- “I have an ongoing list of “small treats” and comforts, which includes going for a walk, making a new music playlist, doing a face mask, going to bed early, “window shopping” for clothing online. “
- “Getting into a freshly made bed with clean bed linen, clean pyjamas having just had a lovely bath. Even better if I know the general household cleaning is done/things are ready for tomorrow – this is my Sunday evening treat and it’s such a pleasure I rarely suffer from ‘Oh no, it’s Monday tomorrow blues’.”
- “Making a pot of tea rather than just putting a teabag in a mug. Somehow the ritual of it and the fact that you need to wait a moment or two for it to brew slows the entire day down and stops me feeling rushed. It’s a moment of calm!”
- “Some friends and I once had a discussion about this on a long train journey. I can’t remember them all now but we made a list of ‘The things that make you go mmmm…’ I also have a set of ‘nice things’ which are all written on small cards, I package them up into a pretty box, write an explanatory note and give them to people as a present – birthday, wedding or just when they’re feeling a little down. I usually phrase it as a ‘random reminder’ of the beautiful things in the world.”
- “Regarding letters … I agree! In one of Julia Cameron‘s books on creativity, she gives the “homework” assignment of writing postcards or short notes to 5 people from your past you are grateful for. Writing these was one of the most fulfilling things I’ve ever done. And imagine how delighted I was when I heard back from my favorite high school teacher after more than 20 years. Needless to say, she was delighted as well.”
- “I love the idea of finding no or low-cost rewards! In addition to many of the rewards mentioned by others, I love: finding an inspiring podcast, doing a mini-pamper session, sitting on my balcony with a cup of tea, exploring a new suburb of Sydney, planning a trip, “dozing” time (literally lie on the couch and do nothing but let my mind wander and go in and out of naps), searching for new quotes and posting them around my apartment, finding and drinking a new tea, and rearranging my furniture.”
Being in a good mood is up to you. Let me know if you give yourself small treats, or if your feel inspired, make your own list and share it here with me 🙂