Last week I wrote about and gave a fun alternative to resolutions I hope y’all are implementing. If you missed it, you can check it out here.
The result of the happiness tool I shared was gratitude. And, gratitude, I believe is at the core of kindness, and kindness in turn, is at the root of true joy in your life.
If my tip wasn’t for you, here is another way to grow an appreciation for the most basic of things...
The other day I was in my neighborhood coffee shop and as the lovely barista Amanda handed me my yummy decaf pumpkin latte, she kindly warned me; “this is the last of the pumpkin, be sure to savor it!”
This got me thinking how much we can take for granted, and wondered what it would be like to enjoy every beverage, every smile, every visit with a loved one as if it were our last.
I don’t mean coming from fear of loss. But, consider the enjoyment that is to be had when you give full value to your experiences, as opposed to taking for granted what seems mundanely repeated day after day.
There are all sorts of spiritual practices and mindfulness trainings that can help you accentuate and elevate the moments you experience.
I remember years ago taking a course on mindfulness, which included practical things like exercise and eating. They asked you to be very aware of the foods you chose; their color, scent, flavors…how it was to chew them, how you felt after, etc… the idea was, that slowing yourself down and allowing your senses to absorb the experience would create a satisfaction far beyond the speedy way we normally plow through our meals.
The same went for exercise. Paying attention to your breathing, eliminating music, and a few other techniques causes you to notice how your body functions. In turn you knew when to slow down and were able to reach optimal levels of performance while avoiding injury.
But, my favorite exercise is time with loved ones.
Even when it’s a short visit, setting my mind to being mentally and emotionally present with my friends and family, creates a warmth, appreciation and satisfaction that I used to miss out on.
In this age of technology where many of us are so accessible, it’s extremely easy to overload on information about those we care about and forget to really connect. Virtually connecting can lead us to a fast food mentality in relationships, which while being a means to an end, isn’t the same as a sitting down and savoring a lovely meal.
What is it in your life that you rush through? Consider what or who deserves more time, focus and care. And don’t forget about yourself!
I look forward to hearing… and, remember I am most definitely in your corner…