Daily Thoughts


March 1, 2021

How to Enjoy Life’s Simple Pleasures

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“If someone asked me what my idea of luxury is, I think my answer would be: flowers in the house all year around.” – Mary Sarton

 

Searching in vain for something to make us happy is enough to drive anyone a bit crazy. This doesn't mean in a clinical sense but more in the vein of running around in circles.

We do need to find some effective ways to deal with everyday stresses and overcome the sameness of routine. Here’s a novel idea: Take the time to enjoy life’s simple pleasures.

Enjoy Life's Simple Pleasures

Think for a minute about simplicity. What could be easier than taking a brief break? Close your eyes. Engage in nothing more than listening to the silence of your thoughts. If what’s going on in your brain is a whirlwind of competing thoughts, acknowledge the chaos and let it begin to subside.

  • Concentrate on your breathing, in and out, in and out, all the while reaffirming that life is precious and good. How simple is that? 

When most people think of how to enjoy life’s simple pleasures, they can't produce a list that doesn’t include the big three. These are money, possessions, and dozens of friends. Of these three, only having friends truly counts as a simple pleasure. The others are accumulations of material things – certainly not conducive to overall happiness. Of course, many other things may pop to the front of your mind as a simple pleasure that isn’t, but you get the point. 

Now, back to enjoying life’s simple pleasures, what are some of these and how do we overcome our reticence to appreciate and enjoy them? Simpler still, what are the steps we can take to enjoy life’s little pleasures? 

If it gives you joy, it’s a simple pleasure, period. These are easy ones:

  • Smell the fragrance of flowers on a morning walk. That’s a simple pleasure.
  • Savor the taste of a delicious meal. That’s a simple pleasure.
  • Delight in the laughter of your young child or the sound of your friends laughing together with you. Another simple pleasure.
  • Reflect on the wonder of the velvety touch of a rose petal.
  • Marvel over the silky softness of a kitten’s fur.
  • Reciprocate the delicious caress of your loved one.

These are all such simple pleasures.

Life’s simple pleasures are easier to recognize and appreciate when you do this. Focus on life now. Strip away the incessant need to acquire and accumulate. Think only about the here and now. Be present.

As to how to get going enjoying them, here are a few suggestions:

  1.  Make time each day to do something you enjoy. It doesn’t have to be a long time. Just 15 minutes is a good start. Read a chapter of a new book by a favorite author. Go for a walk outside. Talk with a friend. Work on a hobby. This isn’t too hard to figure out.
  2. Think of this as a treat. Engaging in some well-deserved and much-needed me-time is critically important. It allows you to rejuvenate and regain your sense of well-being, to take a break from the non-stop daily pressures and schedules. Everyone likes a treat. Why not give yourself one?
  3. Need help? Craft a list. Put on the spot to think about a simple pleasure? Do yourself a favor and write a few down as they come to you. That way, you’ll have several choices when you do decide to stop and enjoy one of them.
  4. Remember that enjoying life’s simple pleasures helps you enjoy living. We’re only here a short amount of time. Make the most of each moment and enjoy every minute of each simple pleasure.

 

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