Free Press Journal

Do You Know You Are Happy?


The most basic pleasures in life are usually accessible to us all the time, but they slip out of our consciousness because we get so used to them. Learn to notice the little things and deliberately appreciate them.

Look around.  Notice things you normally take for granted, like sunlight reflecting off someone’s hair. Smell the roses. Smell the food and the air. Recognise the smells that make you feel good: a freshly cut lawn, the air right after it rains, a fresh pot of coffee.

Savour your food. Eat slowly. Identify flavours. Appreciate the sense of touch. How do leaves, blankets, lotions feel against your skin? Listen to more than music. Listen when you think it’s quiet, and you’ll discover it’s not really all that quiet. You might hear the wind, leaves rustling, kids laughing.

Things like laughter, affection, and playfulness are fleeting. Once a relationship has degraded so that those things don’t spontaneously occur anymore, it’s very hard to get them back. So treat those moments with care, especially with kids, who are at the peak of lightheartedness.

Many of our best memories are made when we’re playing and fooling around and are carefree. Spend time with kids. They’re the masters of playtime. If you know a group of kids, ask them to show you a game they like to play, and play with them like you’re a child yourself. Don’t worry about looking silly.

Be a good sport. Don’t be a sore loser! There’s no reason to take anything personally. When you get too concerned about being proper and polite, you lose a great deal of playfulness and humour.

Don’t let other people get you down. If you crack a joke or flirt with someone and they growl or roll their eyes, stay positive! Shrug and bounce away, off to find another playmate.

Live in the moment. Living in the moment is all about living like there’s no tomorrow. It takes practice but in the end, you’ll lead a fuller life. To do this you must realise beauty in every moment, and in everyday activities. The most playful people are the ones who are most “tuned in” to the present. They’re so fascinated by the world at the moment that they’re always finding ways to engage it!