Finding Joy in the Ordinary

by Adapt Training and Development

By taking care
of ordinary things,
we rejoice in them.

When we scrub a vegetable
or brush our hair,
we are expressing friendship
towards ourselves &
towards the living quality
that is found in everything…

Pema Chodron

I love the sentiment of caring for ordinary things with kindness and attention (we could say mindfully). I am also struck by how the ordinary can start to seem very special when it’s lacking. We don’t think much about having power until it goes out for a period of time in the winter. We may not think about our health or mobility until something happens to alter those things.

If you want to practice being more attentive to ordinary things, here are a few ideas

  1. Try to notice the little details that make you happy in your living space. Maybe it’s a lamp that puts out the perfect amount of light. Maybe it’s a houseplant that is flowering. Maybe you’ve painted a room a certain color that you really love.
  2. Right now, wherever you are, look around and try to notice five things that you appreciate or enjoy. A favorite mug? A screen saver photo of your pets? The view of clouds and fog out the window? I am guessing it will not be hard to notice five items.
  3. If you’re going to use something a lot, try to find something you really like, especially if it isn’t pricey. I’m thinking about a really nice pen that feels good in your hand, a bath towel that has just the right amount of softness, or a fry pan that is just the right size for eggs.
  4. Think about the seasons and what things will elevate your life just a tad. This time of year for me, it’s heated blankets and battery operated candles. Not high cost items, but they add so much comfort to my winter days.

Here is a nice article about joy in the ordinary.