What can be more fun than asking the people in your life what their most joyful moment was today? It reminds them of happy moments and lets you discover more about their personal delights. My husband and I have a small note on our nightstand reminding us to share with each other at night – “What did you love most today?”. It is a very simple and innocent ritual. You might think it does not add much, but you might be surprised about the power of doing this for a week or more. It adds joy, tenderness, and connection to the moments before we go to sleep. We get to know each other better, celebrate what was good, and drift off to sleep with a happy thought. We all need more celebration of the good these days with all that is going on in our COVID world.
I invite my clients to do this as an experiment for a month during their 3rd life (3rd life is the time when full-time work is no longer your dominant daily focus). During a time when you are in charge of your happiness, this is a great way to start a mental or written collection of what type of experiences add the most to your happiness. As you notice your favorite moment of the day, over time, you will naturally do more of these things. It just happens.
It is a curious thing that with all the bigger things we might be doing -volunteering, writing- how often the very simple things still make your favorite moment list. I remember one full day that had so many things I loved and savored. My winning moment was watching the robin in our backyard birdhouse feeding their chirping nest of just-hatched babies. It was such a small and tender joy I felt there. I related to the parents working so hard to love and take care of their offspring. I enjoyed the rising chirp choir the moment the mama or papa bird landed on the little round opening with something scrumptious for a little bird in his or her beak.
We don’t need much to be happy sometimes. Just a moment of something that touches us deeply.
Want to try this gentle ritual? Then grab an index card or a piece of paper right now and write this question: What did I love about today? Then go to your nightstand right now and place it where you will see it tonight as you go to bed.
If you have a partner, consider asking your partner this question. If you do not have a partner, text your best friend or child or someone else you like and trust and enjoy being close with. Then be touched and delighted with the small and gentle joys of life that delight you and the people you love..
3rd life is such a beautiful time in life to go for all that you want. It is a time to get to know yourself deeply and in a new way. We can learn to be in the world in a fuller and deeper way by paying attention to the things that trigger gratefulness and joy. Or we can notice the things that make us feel stressed and unhappy and then take steps to alleviate the stress. In my coach training, I learned that eradicating negative experiences is a more successful driver for behavior change. I sometimes wonder if this is true for 3rd life. Maybe this is a time where we can notice and celebrate the tender moments of joy, celebrate them, and allow them to become the building blocks of a better day tomorrow. Who knows? You decide.
Thank you for reading my blog. Finding strategies for adding contentment and joy and forevermore satisfaction to your 3rd life is what I am all about. I am obsessed with and am having a blast being on the lookout for discovering the best strategies and sharing them with you. Stay tuned for more ways to make the rest of your life the best of your life, yet.
“Everyone chases after happiness, not noticing that happiness is right at their heels.”