“One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats.” ~ Iris Murdoch
I have been reading Women Rowing North by Mary Pipher. (Thank you Jennifer Laffin- https://www.teachwrite.org/ for the recommendation!)
The book’s subtitle ‘Navigating Life’s Currents and Flourishing as We Age.’ really caught my eye. When I turned 60 in the fall, I found myself vascillating between feeling afraid and feeling fearless, between not giving a damn and giving it my all, between being at the end of my story or on the cusp of some new adventure. I knew I wasn’t ready to wither, but I wasn’t sure if I would still be able to flourish.
That brings me back to Chapter 10. I have only read a few pages so far, but the following lines really stuck out to me. “Building a good day is about making good choices involving our emotions, thinking, and behavior. ” “it’s possible to do a mental reset by asking ourselves what we are looking forward to and what we are grateful for.” It is not that I have never heard of these things before, but these words did make me stop and re-evaluate how well I utilize these techniques.
What am I looking forward to? Here are just a few of my “small treats”:
Spending time with my grandchildren – Easter egg hunts, sleepovers, cookie baking, block building, coloring, giggling, hugs, & kisses.
Concerts – The William Tennent Jazz Ensemble under the direction of my son, The Golden Boys, and just turning up my car radio with the sunroof open.
Summer – more time to read & write, teaching a grad class, morning tea on the deck, evening sunsets and card games.
I will certainly be adding to my list as I spend more time actively thinking about what I am looking forward to rather than just letting things sneak up on me.
I am building a good day today because I chose to focus on the fact that I don’t need my cane even though there are bouts of stiffness and little aches and pains, on the fact that it is a sunny day even though it started out with clouds, and that because I am in the midst of standardized testing which is never pleasant I don’t have any work to take home tonight.
What about you? Are you building a good day today?