minnie mug

Happiness Is…

Recently, it was International Happiness Day. A day to celebrate what makes us happy. The point of the day, in my opinion, is to notice the little things and…most of all…

So many of us rush around getting things done, being stressed out, keeping up with everyone else. We have more things, but we are less happy. We are sick and tired, yet most of us have everything we’ve ever dreamed of. And then some.

I was looking at old home movies on the weekend and I noticed something. I wasn’t very happy. I noticed how happy my kids were with simple things like playing gymnastics on the couch cushions or sliding around the kitchen floor in their socks or just playing playdough. I noticed that I was always cleaning or constantly moving from one thing to the next and our house was full of STUFF. I was very overweight and dressed (if I was dressed at all) in clothes that did not flatter me. At one point, I heard my hubby sweetly ask me what he could do to help and I told him he didn’t have to – that I would do it all.

It was an eye-opening glimpse into how far I’ve come. This was perfect timing for me because I still have days – like Friday last week – where I think that I’m not good enough. Days where I struggle accepting who I am. My sweetheart and I talked late into the night trying to help me accept my truth. And then, I woke up to the thought, “Oh! I need to backup those home movies before that computer crashes”. I hadn’t thought about them in months – maybe even a year. Yet, suddenly, I thought of them early on Saturday morning. Still shaky in my belief about my own worth. And then I saw her on the video. The old me. The one who struggled to find happiness in those simple moments caught on video because I was too busy running around, “catching up” on all my to-do’s. Too busy to eat properly. Too busy to shower. Too busy to wear clothes that I love. Too busy to take care of me.

I’m still not sure of what the exact moment was when I decided that this had to stop. Maybe it was that I was tired of it all. It certainly wasn’t overnight. It has been one step after another. Each day something new. Each day a chance to try again. And now I hardly recognize her.

Now, I don’t mind so much being in front of the camera. Now, I’m mostly smiling. Now, I slow down and notice the little things. Now, I choose Happiness:

  • I love that our espresso machine has a mug warmer on top
  • I have a really cool space where I can sit and create, play or do whatever makes me happy
  • Yoga with my sweetheart to close the day
  • Snuggled on the coach, squeezing in beside lanky teenagers watching a movie
  • Quick visits with my grown up baby boy wherever I can catch him
  • Resting my head on my daughter’s shoulder as she towers over me for a quick “Mama” hug
  • That goofy little guy who’s almost as tall as me and has his Dad’s sense of humor that always makes me laugh
  • A cup of tea and amazing conversations with kindred spirits who I call friends
  • Catching a glimpse of geese and hearing their call on yet another winter day that gives me hope for spring

It’s the little things that truly make me happy. What makes you happy? Share in the comments.

Do you need help and inspiration to notice those little things? The Divine Goddess Circle can help. It’s a community for working women who are seeking support and actions to become the Goddess they are! Join us: www.divinegoddesscircle.com

6 thoughts on “Happiness Is…

  1. Reply
    Sally Todd (@SallyToddPR) - March 25, 2014

    What makes me happy:

    My husband bringing me a cup of tea every morning.
    My kids random conversations
    My nutty dogs who think it’s fine to jump all over my fresh white bed linen with muddy paws.
    More tea.
    The fact that I have finally found my thing and am working with a great lady to build a fab business.
    My husbands ability to always make me laugh when I am feeling down.
    The fact that the local shop has just started selling cheese balls.
    The warmth of the sun on my skin.
    My bed

    1. Reply
      shawna - March 25, 2014

      mmmmm I love this list! oooooo! cheese balls! Yes!! And the dogs and the bed lol! Been there! I just said to my hubby that my bed is my favorite, favorite spot in the whole world.

  2. Reply
    Brandy - March 25, 2014

    It’s amazing what can happen when we’re paying attention! There was a study done awhile back that showed that people who were made happy by big events like weddings, winning the lottery, etc. eventually went back to being just as happy as they were before the event once it was over. Happiness is a skill.
    The sweet sound of a laughing baby.
    The way rain sounds when it hits my roof.
    The feeling I get when I catch two of my friends in a bonding moment of their own.
    The joy of sharing a great conversation with a stranger.

    There is so much for us to find…thank you for this great reminder!

    1. Reply
      shawna - March 25, 2014

      Brandy, yes!! Happiness is a skill that we all have. Some of us just need to let it out more, that’s all. I love, LOVE those conversations with strangers. My mom has always been such a great influence for that. She can always talk to the people in the check out lane or in line at the bank. She’s always been able to make people feel welcome and listened to. That’s what I like to do too!

  3. Reply
    Emma Smith - March 26, 2014

    Lovely post. Here’s what makes me happy:
    My daughter’s smile, laugh and kisses (she is nearly 3!)
    That first cup of tea in the morning
    Taking a walk on a bright sunny morning
    Writing about what matters to me on my blog and having people listen and respond!
    Talking about our respect days with my man
    Seeing my little girl having fun with her Granny and Uncle (we used to live on the other side of the world from them)
    Lying in bed reading a good book.

    1. Reply
      shawna - March 26, 2014

      Three year olds – so cute! I miss those days sometimes! I’m glad you’re closer to family – I am close to mine too and very grateful for their presence in our lives. I’m curious about “respect days” – what are they?

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