When is it that we experience true happiness? In the light of a new year ahead of us, we feel inspired to share some ideas that help us appreciate the joy and wonder we are fortunate to experience every day. True happiness is more than a good punch line, it exists in our subconscious and flows through us each day that we connect to it. We believe you’ll resonate with at least some of these principles, and more than likely you have some inspirational ideas of your own that you could add to this list. Here they are…
1. Be Light-Hearted:
What is a big deal really? Crayons on the wall? Abstract art! That broken phone screen? Replaceable! Kids utterly refusing to eat dinner that you worked so hard to prepare? Time for a time-honoured classic “Here comes the airplane!” approach to enjoying nourishment and growth.
Understanding that each situation can have many solutions helps us to first accept our predicament, and second, to acknowledge any resistance we may have. Addressing our resistance helps to alleviate negative emotions that may come along with it. Without resistance, perhaps a creative (and fun) solution will present itself.
2. Foster Authentic Connections:
One interpretation of quantum physics says that a thing/entity is not defined on its own, but only as a relationship to all things/entities it interacts with. We are not one-man-armies, tackling challenges thrust upon us by the outside world. More accurately we can find our true selves in the ways that we interact with each other, our loved ones, and those we share our days with. When we nurture healthy relationships, we feel more fullness and warmth, which translates to more energy and a deeper satisfaction each day. As one Beatle put it:
“The love you take is equal to the love you make” – Paul McCartney
3. Get Moving:
Exercise and energy work similar to the law of inertia, which is the tendency of objects in motion to stay in motion, and objects at rest to stay at rest. Whether it’s going for an uplifting nature walk or a cross-town bike ride, when you embody a regular fitness routine, you will have more, not less energy for your other tasks. Not to mention, physical exercise makes your brain stronger. Smarter AND more energy? Now that’s a strong argument to get yourself moving every day.
4. Embrace Silence:
Can you hear it? Or is it more of a feeling? It’s that moment of pause in an exchange with a loved one or close friend. It’s both nowhere and surrounds us at the same time. Your fluffball basks in a sun puddle. That moment when the kids finally go to sleep and your house takes an inaudible breath. Like the calm before (or after) a storm, silence offers contrast to exciting moments and busy days. If we can notice it, we get to soak up the peace that quiet time brings.
5. Let it Go:
While we do well to embrace our valuable past and the lessons it brings, paradoxically, we also gain from letting go of the things we cannot change. Yes, you just got rear-ended and will have to cancel a meeting, take your car in, and make alternate arrangements for a few days, but holding onto resentment and anger will contribute negativity throughout each step of the process. Once we fully accept that our car is slightly crumpled, we feel empowered to move through this challenge with confidence, and maybe even show off to our children our enlightened demeanor in the face of adversity.
6. Learn Something New:
As we have witnessed for almost four decades at Roots & Wings, the Montessori method excels at assisting children to teach themselves. Lifelong learning occurs naturally in all of us, as we satisfy our own curiosities and passions. Mastering a new skill can be fun and rewarding (especially when you get to show it off 😉) and creates a self-confidence in our future abilities. Learning in general keep us youthful and open-minded. This study shows that learning a second language lowers the risk of dementia. What second (or third, or fourth) language have you always wanted to learn? This could be your year, and we believe in you!
As we roll into 2024, each of these principles can contribute to a sense of true happiness and fulfillment. When we pursue personal growth, we learn to feel the quiet power of letting go, which allows us space to engage in a delightful conversation with those we love. Sounds easy, right? Maybe not always, but again, we believe in you! What other inspired tools and techniques would you add to our list? Find us on Instagram and let us know what you think!
- The Roots & Wings Team