I have become a big fan of Gretchen Rubin’s book The Happiness Project, and her website. According to Ms Rubin, we become unhappy “when we feel depleted and drained, and when we have no time or energy devoted to the things that give us pleasure.” Treating ourselves throughout the day with small pleasures is an important way to avoid those feeling of depletion and to prevent becoming unhappy.
Ms Rubin suggests creating a list of treats and pleasures that have a very low cost in time, energy, or money. Ms Rubin’s readers have shared a fun and varied list of their treats and pleasures. Some of my favorites are listed here:
Small Treats and Pleasures
taking the pup to the park
dance party in my office
getting a hot chocolate
reading a chapter of my book in bed
Photo courtesy of squacco
looking at a family photo album
taking an extra long shower
stretching or yoga
Belting along to the Dixie Chicks, Patty Loveless or Lyle Lovett while driving
My Nana’s coffee cake
Iced Dunkin’ Donuts coffee with skim milk and sugar
Really good cheese
Doing the NYT Sunday acrostic
Re-reading my favorite children’s books (esp. the “Shoes” and Betsy-Tacy books)
Calling my mom
Walking a different way to work or coming home, especially through a park
Getting into bed when it’s just been made up with crisp fresh sheets
Monkey Bay Sauvignon Blanc
Fresh strawberries, raspberries or peaches when they’re in season. And tomatoes!
Having breakfast from a wooden tray with a linen napkin on it
A gardenia beside the bed.
Mrs. Meyers’ Honeysuckle hand soap.
washing my hands with Molton Brown hand soap
Make home made soup
Lubricating eye drops – make my eyes feel great!
Give myself a foot massage
Read a travel guide
Petting a dog I meet in the street
Lighting a candle
A face mask, especially a minty one
A hot shower
Making my own bread, kneading is soothin
Watching foreign movies
Stare at trees stretching to reach the sky
Buy a new color of lipstick
I encourage you to make your own list. Try to work one or two of these into your day. Enjoy.