Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Bright Spots

Even the grayest days have some bright moments. I think they stand out more, in their stark contrast, and I try really hard to notice them, to say to myself "this is a good moment". An island in time where the anxiety is gone, thinking about yesterday and tomorrow subsides, and I can just be happy. It may be 5 minutes, or an hour, but it makes the rest of the day easier to get through.

Consistent bright spots:
  • Being outside in nice weather
  • Being outside with the kids in at least halfway-decent weather (the park!)
  • Snuggling with L (he's my cuddly one)
  • Watching the kids play together
  • Finishing a tough workout
  • Finishing a tough project (taxes, a presentation)
  • A good book
A lot of these things, I have no control over. I can't control the weather (FFS, its 40 and rainy today) or my kids' moods. But I can try to get outside when it IS nice, or take the time to hold L in my lap in the morning even if it means being 5 minutes late. I can decide not to waste my evening folding laundry or aimlessly on the internet and pick up a book. I can decide to go to the gym even when I'm really not feeling it, knowing I'll feel better after, or sitting down and tackling the thing hanging over my head even when tomorrow always seems to be the better time. 

I noticed that my list doesn't contain the superficial things I usually think of as "treats" that I try to give myself when I'm feeling down---no good food, glass of wine, TV show, new clothes. I guess those things are mere distractions, and don't really heal the problem.

I'd like to add more to this list---and then fill my life as full as I can with these moments---its nice to know how I can control my happiness to some extent.


  1. :)

    I need to work on this stuff too-- it's hard combating my highly addictive personality.

  2. Today while I was bitching to my co-residents about the various indignities of being an intern, I thought to myself that I am SO LUCKY that I have such great co-interns. And that made me feel very happy.

  3. I find that having a few minutes to myself each day (that don't involve laundry or dishes) makes such a difference in my happiness! You are right that material things usually aren't the most satisfying. But I just got a new couch, and I love it. Yesterday I was home for an hour before I had to pick up the kids. After dishes & laundry, I still had some time. I decided to sit on my new couch and do a crossword puzzle. It was wonderful!

    1. Ooh, crossword puzzles! I used to LOVE doing those and haven't done one in years.
      I think having nice surroundings can be calming and make life better, like your new couch, or when we got our walls repainted from the garish green to a calming blue gray. But over time, you get used to it, so it stops making you HAPPY. And, of course, its what you're DOING in the surroundings (crossword by yourself=happy, holding down tantrumming child on couch=sucky)