How many awesome things happened around you today?
Quick —what does the cool side of the pillow have in common with finding money in a coat pocket? They both rank among the little things in life that bring us the most joy.
Sure, the major milestones leave their marks on our lives. How often do they occur, though? And what sustains us in between those times?
That’s the accidental quest that writer Neil Pasricha set out to explore with his award-winning blog, 1000awesomethings.com. “With so much sad news and bad news pouring down on us,” Pasricha explains, “it’s fun to stop for a minute and share a universal high five with the rest of humanity.”
The blog took on a life of its own, and pretty soon readers began sending in their own versions of “awesome things” to his website. From the smell of gasoline ... to cashiers opening up new checkout lanes ... to watching “The Price is Right” when you’re home sick.
Now, the blog has given way to “The Book of AWESOME,” which came across my desk (thanks to my colleague and good friend Dick Allowatt). I’ve got to say it’s increased my awareness of those everyday things that bring me joy. And with increased awareness comes increased appreciation.
Who knew that hitting a bunch of green lights in a row —or punching the elevator button, only to hear the simultaneous “ding” signaling an elevator is already awaiting you—could contribute to the quality of our lives if we just pay attention? Talk about a whole new way to ponder the “pushing of our buttons.”
It doesn’t count if you don’t pay attention, though, or take these things for granted. Maybe you think they’re all coincidences. And some of them may be. I find, however, when I acknowledge them in a playful and grateful way, more of them show up. Synchronicity is a beautiful thing.
In case you think these things happen to other people —and not you—I invite you to try a little experiment. Take time this week to stand back and be an observer in your own life. Watch what happens. When you spot one of these “joy-makers,” make a note of it in a little pocket journal:
• A cute puppy wagging its tail at you
• Finally remembering a word—or a name—that’s been on the tip of your tongue
• Nailing a parallel parking attempt on the first try
• Spotting your suitcase coming out of the luggage chute at the airport
• Making it through Customs without any questions
• Finding the TV remote
• Getting a handwritten note in the mail
These things are really happening around us all the time. If it doesn’t feel like they’re showing up in your life, it may be because that’s not where you’re putting your focus. It seems to be human nature to hurtle through the day, trying to “accomplish” as much as we can. The downside is that we often fail to notice those “goodies” that make the journey more fun along the way.
You can even start before you get out of bed. If you wake up early and realize you have some extra time to sleep or ease into the day, that counts. This may give way to pulling up to a parking meter with extra time already on it. Whoo-hoo!
Sometimes when the momentum really gets going, you can find yourself “on a roll.” We’re all composed of energy, and this is part of the vibrational frequency we’re sending out into the world. Watch out — that vending machine may just give you two items instead of one!
Of course, our energies ebb and flow. It’s just fun to play with this concept and watch what shows up. Things may not change overnight — or in the areas we think they ought to. With consistent attention to the “goodies” that happen around us, though, chances are more and more of them will occur:
• Finding your keys
• Scoring an airline row with an empty seat beside you
• Picking up both a “q” and a “u” at the same time in Scrabble
• Cranking up the car radio and singing along
• Driving through your old neighborhood and stopping to see the house where you grew up
• Remembering how fortunate we are to be right here ... right now
So, in between those major milestones in your life (that wedding, birth of a child, graduation, promotion or vacation), stop to savor the thousands of awesome things that happen to you every day.
If the spirit moves you, shoot me an email about ways this shows up in your life; and I’ll look at sharing your insight with other readers. Who knows what we may discover? After all, the joy is in the journey.
©2019 Linda Arnold Life 101, all rights reserved. Linda Arnold, M.A., M.B.A., is a syndicated columnist, psychological counselor and Founder of a multistate marketing company. Reader comments are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org. For Information on her books, go to www.lindaarnold.org or Amazon.com.