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  • Pat Birnie

Little Things That Bring Joy

A few days ago, I realized that I was more than a little excited about a very small thing. It made me smile as I accepted that it was just one more thing that my kids would make fun of me about. But - I don't care! I relish taking joy in small things.


Flannel sheets. That's was it. Growing up, as soon as the weather got chilly, our mom switched our bed sheets out to those thick cozy white sheets, with the stripes across the top. I've always loved sleep and cozying into a fuzzy sheet is just the best feeling. My last set wore right through a couple of years ago and I just never got around to replacing them. Until...a couple of weeks ago I picked up a lovely set (half price!) at Hudson's Bay Company. I got them washed and realized as I was making up the bed I realized I was feeling a pretty good level of excitement to going to bed that night. It made me laugh out loud, especially as I thought of my offspring rolling their eyes if I ever mentioned my joy at this tiny experience.


So cozy & warm!!

I continued to think about the myriad of tiny, almost inconsequential things that give me a little burst of joy. Here are just a few:

  • Laughing uncontrollably, until your stomach hurts (and these days a toot sometimes escapes)

  • Enjoying the sun on your face and shoulders (especially when we leave the winter weather for a warm destination)

  • Accomplishing a difficult task - it could be as simple as washing a window and admiring it for days, or accomplishing a new task (I recently changed a light fixture for the first time and felt so proud and....well, joyful!)

  • Taking the time to ask someone how they are really doing. During the shutdown I knew that retail workers were really overworked and underappreciated. I made a point of asking them (with eye contact) how things were going. The response was often surprise at even being asked! There was a warmth in knowing that I made their day a little brighter.

  • On the reverse, when someone remembers that I'm going through a challenge and reaches out to check in, touches me deeply. Perhaps it's because people are so busy all the time, it's so special that they remember others' challenges.

  • Cutting into an (almost) perfect avocado.

The message here is that when life is so busy and perhaps feels like it's not really going that great, take the time to appreciate and enjoy the small pleasures. It's so tempting to just plow through the minutia of daily life, focused on the next task. The loss here is that we miss out on the little burst of serotonin when we take a moment to just sit in that pleasure. Check out this link if you need more convincing of the value.


Please share the little things that bring you daily joy - the smaller the better! I'd love to hear from you.


And finally, I saved my silliest and best little daily joy. It's my first sip of coffee each and every morning. Ahhhhh....just the best. (In fact I usually set up the coffee maker the night before and actually get a little excited for the next morning. Every. Single. Time.


Joyfully yours, Pat xo

patbirnie55@gmail.com

905-330-5266



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