I don't think anyone's escaped a visit to their grandparents without hearing something about, "it's the simple things," at some point. You know, the everyday things in life that we generally take for granted; sunny weather after weeks of grey, cloudless skies, the weekend after an overwhelmingly busy work or school week, or even a favorite snack when afternoon hunger strikes. These things aren't really life-altering, but they hold more power in the present than we often give them credit for.
As the days, weeks, and months all run together in a seamless blur of busyness and routine, I know that I'm guilty of letting a lot of life's small, meaningful blessings go unappreciated. It's not that I tend to be ungrateful, I think it's mostly that I'm not mindful enough. This lack of mindfulness prevents me from consciously appreciating these things. While this is mostly true, I've recently started to notice that some of the smallest, inconsequential things are bringing me the most joy.
As the warm weather starts to settle in and the sun rays begin to peak out again, I'm excitedly welcoming the arrival of Spring. Hands down, Spring is my favorite season. For many reasons, but the simplest being flowers. The flowers are beginning to bloom; everywhere! While those with allergies may be in opposition to a flower fetish, I can't get enough of them. Just seeing them around the neighborhood trees or in scattered patches across campus instantly brightens my day. I don't know if it's the rich, varied colors or subtle, calming fragrance, but the arrival of spring blooms is quite possibly my favorite thing about the season.
Another lesson of gratitude I've been learning is celebrating the small victories. The little accomplishments like checking off things on the "to-do list," completing one out of however many assignments, or having clean clothes, dishes, and hair at night are just really refreshing. Yes, they're all necessary obligations, but completing each task is such a rewarding feeling. Some people might even consider this a part of the widespread upswing in self-care, which would also explain why it leaves me feeling so accomplished.
I guess, in regards to my earlier statement, I've started the shift towards "mindfulness." By no means am I an expert in heightened awareness, but I think that's what my newfound appreciations boil down to. Even when I'm charging through my day, my mind slows from time to time to experience brief moments of simple joy. The sprouting blooms and finished assignments pop up at just the right time to keep my mood and outlook elevated.
While some of us follow a tighter schedule than others, we all have unique, individual moments of life's simplicity to celebrate. It doesn't even require setting aside time. We can just as easily practice gratitude as we come and go. Maybe, it will be savoring the taste of our morning coffee a little more or catching all the green lights on our daily commutes. The small things are dotted throughout all aspects of our lives. These ordinary pick-me-ups are pervasive in the best way possible.