Friday, November 11, 2016

Life’s Little Pleasures

     Do you remember when you were sick, how all you could think about was feeling good like you did most days? Do you remember when you had surgery or had some physical ailment so you couldn’t take a shower? All you could think about was taking a shower? When you take a shower, do you really feel the wonderful tingle of the water on your skin and the sense of well that you experience? Or are you planning your day or trying to figure out your latest issues?Do you remember when something sad or bad happened, and you had trouble getting out of your black cloud? All you could think about was feeling good or happy again. So what’s the point? The point is simple:  being mindful of the good makes the good even better.

      I read the other day that if you have trouble meditating, just try to be mindful of one thing each day. Instead of losing yourself in the misery of newspaper headlines, drink your coffee and really taste it. Feel the warmth on your tongue and the magic it does as you swallow. Look around the room and count your blessings. Look at the hand holding the mug, and be thankful your hands don’t hurt or that you have all your fingers. I know this sounds trite, but it is one way of being mindful and focusing so that our thoughts are not fleeing into space knocking into one another as we start our day. 

     When I was a Weight Watcher, they always told us that if we did anything else while we were eating, we wouldn’t taste our food. We’d finish our meal and still want to eat because we were distracted from tasting and chewing. If you’ve ever had teeth issues, you know that once resolved, it is a joy just to be able to chew and taste. I still have trouble eating without thinking of a million other things. And like they warned me, sometimes I look down and say to myself, “Did I eat that already?” 

Perhaps this topic is timely because many of us are reeling from the outcome of the election. We blinked, and our world changed. I don’t know about you, but my day yesterday was just as good as any other day. Maybe someone else’s was not, and for that, I worry. We can only control what we can control. We can’t control others, weather, politics, the economy, world hunger. All we can manage is what is in front of us. So let’s enjoy the simple little pleasures of our daily lives like caffeine, taste buds and warm water splashing on our faces. Let’s indulge in the daily pleasures which build up our stamina to deal with the uncontrollables.