As I sat down in front of my laptop today, my mind dwelling on some of the topics that I’ve been thinking of writing about, I felt an intense joy for being able to do what I’m doing, for having the time to do it, for the cooling and quiet study, and for my small device that allows me to connect to the world.
I then remembered a time in my life when I wasn’t able to truly feel grateful for the things that were part of my everyday experience. Or perhaps I was, yet I didn’t have the ability to get a holistic sense of satisfaction from what I knew I should be thankful for. But then, I slowly began to experience a transition, from lack and restlessness, to a time where everything is meaningful, the small and big things in life. A time filled with an appreciation for the small joys that infuse a regular day.
Very often, during a day, my heart fills with gratitude for what I previously may have easily disregarded. It normally starts with being grateful for experiencing a new day. A new day is truly a gift and this is becoming clearer to me as time goes by. Every event of a new day is meaningful because I believe that nothing, absolutely nothing, is random. Our encounters, our thoughts, our words and our actions have a sort of a weight, they are all more or less significant to ourselves and those around us. But none is insignificant. With this thought in mind, I welcome all events of a day. I try not to set any expectations or hold on too tight to what my mind envisions the day to be. My intention becomes to receive whatever may come with openness and perspective.
Details of a day that may easily be overlooked have now become a big part of gaining a moment-to-moment sense of happiness and balance. Wearing something I’m comfortable in, being surrounded by my favourite colours, having access to something I want the moment I need it, feeling the care of those around me or noticing an inspired idea tip-toeing into my thoughts. Perceiving such things is now helping me to stay grounded and aware.
Being able to stay happy and connected in an apparently uneventful day was not something I was always able to do. More so, I used to get terribly frustrated because of a strong need to do things, see people, go places. And if that didn’t happen, I would start to feel unhappy and bored. The concept of boredom is something that I have let go of entirely. Feeling bored was most probably overlapping a sense of general restlessness and dissatisfaction. Having a lack of knowledge on how to approach these kind of energies, I would classify my mood as “bored” and try to frantically find something to do.
Nowadays, friends sometimes ask me, “So, what are you going to do today?” and I am often not sure what to reply. One of the reasons is my not needing to DO things to occupy my time, like I used to. Now, it’s more like I try to tune into the flow of the day and select what feels best from the available activities that I like to engage in.
Throughout a day, I am often humbled by the opportunity to have quick and easy access to what I need. Things such as access to information, communication and to whatever I may require for physical comfort. With all these readily available, there are so many things to get engaged in. All we need to do is to receive the day with an open heart and listen for what it calls us to do. We may sometimes get inspirational ideas that can grow into very meaningful activities.
Making the best of our day also has to do with how well we know ourselves and how pro-active we are in balancing our activities. For instance, it took me a while to determine what is the right time for me to spend in the company of others and how long I have to be by myself or with my loved one. The same goes for being outdoors or indoors. I started connecting with my feelings and began to think in terms of energy.
Although urban living comes with many bonuses, it can get pretty overwhelming without some careful managing of how energy is spent. I had to learn, by experiencing it, that I have to compensate being out in big crowds with a similar amount of time spent in solitude or with my loved one. The same goes with spending time with people. Any lack of balance on how I recharge my batteries, will make me moody and less receptive to what’s going on around me.
Of course, this kind of lifestyle implies there’s less social time, turning down invites, saying no to friends. But all those things make sense when they add to how you feel. They are not necessary if after fulfilling your social commitments, you are left feeling drained and grumpy. An important lesson for me to learn was that I can be of more service to others when I take care of myself than when I expose myself beyond my abilities, thinking that I am having a helpful contribution. Which reminds me to share this one minute video about why you should start saying “Hell Yeah or No” when deciding to do something.
However you may choose to spend a regular day, I hope you can always be reminded that every single day comes with many blessings waiting to be acknowledged. And that even the most seemingly uneventful day is filled with opportunities waiting for you to show up and grab them. Say “Hell Yeah!” to those that feel right and make the best of every day.