4.11.2012

A to Z: Joy

One of my best friends and I do this thing where every day we tell or text or email to one another a list of three things that are making us happy that day.  I know that sounds super cheesy (and it is, I guess - very Oprah's gratitude journal) but I have to say, it has really changed my day-to-day mood.  I wasn't expecting much when we started, to be honest.  It's just three things.  Takes maybe a minute or two of my day.  But that's why I'm evangelizing about it now: it's so easy.  And it's kind of awesome.

What it means is that every day, the following are guaranteed:

  • I will take at least a few moments to think about the ways in which I am lucky and blessed
  • I will take at least a few moments to celebrate with my friend the ways she is lucky and blessed
  • I will have at least one conversation that is centered around joy, and not around complaints/to do lists/work/stress/etc.

Before I did this, those things were not guaranteed.   Okay, it was highly likely I'd have conversations that weren't about complaints or work or stress.  But it definitely wasn't likely that I would set aside time to think about the good things in my life, and to celebrate the good things in someone else's.  Unless I'm mindful about it, I find that I don't do those things often enough.  So this is my way of being mindful.

Cheesy or not.  :)


One month.  26 posts.  A to Z.  (Don't know what I'm talking about?  Check out the Challenge here.)

21 comments:

  1. I don't think it's cheesy at all. I think it's a wonderful idea. May have to nudge my sister-in-law into this ritual with me. I've taken to wearing a rubberband on my arm so I can flink myself anytime I have a negative thought about myself.

    Never underestimate the power of ritual.

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    1. I used to wear a bracelet that I'd switch from wrist to wrist every time I caught myself complaining. Very similar. Totally agree about the ritual of it!

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  2. Thanks for this - I'm going to try it for a month, just writing in my journal (where I usually get out my griping). We so often forget that what we focus on is always a choice.

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    1. Oh, great! Let me know how it goes! :)

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  3. It's not cheesy. I do this each night before I turn in---write down what I was grateful for, that day. It adds up.


    Hope you’re enjoying the challenge so far!
    --Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z
    #atozchallenge

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    1. It really does - and it's nice to be able to look back at your list, too.

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  4. I'm with everyone else. Very not cheesy. Lovely.

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  5. That's such a brilliant and simple idea, how many of us actually do take a moment out to think of the good things in our day. I know for sure I don't, I run round in a constant state of anxiety beating myself about the head. I'm going to suggest to a friend we should do this, I think we both could benefit. Thank you for a lovely positive inspiring post.

    My blog in the AtoZChallenge is Doctor Who themed, but I would love if you had the time to pop by even if you don't know of the TV show.

    http://itsmotherwho.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/judged.html

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    1. I hope it works as well for you as it has for me. :) And I don't know much about Doctor Who, but I'll definitely be stopping by your blog!

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  6. I guess it depends on how you define "cheesy."

    (Geez, now who sounds like the lawyer? LOL!)

    It might be "cheesy" if you mean something that isn't hard-edged, cynical, or even the stereotype of 'cool', but then who the heck got to decide that angst, anger, and alienation were what were considered 'cool' anyway? (I demand a re-vote!)

    Personally, I think it's sweet, compassionate, caring, and a great idea. It brings joy and positive energy makes the lives of two people a little better -- that's pretty awesome from where I'm sitting, too.

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    1. May I never come up against you in a case! ;)

      Re-vote it is. Annnnnnd: joy wins.

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  7. what a great exercise in gratitude! I try to do this with my girlfriend as well:)
    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com
    Dropping by from the A-Z!

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    1. I'm glad! It has been such a great addition to my days.

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  8. I love this idea! I'll have to start practicing this one.

    New follower here. I’m enjoying reading my fellow “A to Z”ers. I look forward to visiting again.

    Sylvia
    http://www.writinginwonderland.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks Sylvia! I hope it works for you! :)

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  9. It doesn't sound cheesy at all to me. Sounds like a great way for two friends to help one another to stay positive. Nice post!

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  10. This is a great thing to do. I love the guaranteed positivity.

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  11. So when did cheesy get a bad name? I like your routine! :)

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  12. I have found that because I post motivating and inspirational thoughts (along with things I think are funny or that just make me happy) on my facebook page ArmsWideOpen, my life has become much more joyful. Because there is so much negativity out in the world, I'm trying to be a positive influence, sort of a light in the darkness -- and have discovered that it boomerangs back to me. When I send happiness out into the world, I am a happier person inside.
    So I think your tradition is wonderful.
    (Did I mention I have a blog by the same name as my fb page? And was that not incredibly suave self-promotion? Hahaha!)

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  13. Wow, I think that sounds like a great thing to do!
    I have kept a gratitude journal at times but I really like the idea of interaction through email.

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