Maybe it’s both too earnest and too obvious, but enjoy the simplest things. They are truly where the most pleasure comes from. Whether it’s a quiet moment, a comforting meal, or a familiar feature, don’t assume that something has to be grand to offer magnitudes of pleasure beyond what you expect.
You’re probably wondering what has me all sentimental at the beginning of this week, and it is no one thing in particular. I have just noticed of late that the more I pause and allow myself to enjoy the little things the less I find myself missing not having some of the things we might typically think of as “bigger.”
Take for example a dinner I had last week. Bread, potatoes, and ribeye, some decent red wine, and the company of a few friends I haven’t had much time for lately. Humbling sitting around a coffee table – no room in the kitchen – on mismatched chairs enjoying a relatively simple meal with good company was the best night I’ve had in weeks. The experience was far more than the sum of its parts.
As a willing and happy participant in a culture which spends a lot of time and energy focusing on $5000 suits, $1500 pairs of shoes, and $100 bottles of whisky, I think it is good to remind ourselves on occasion the limitations of these treasures. They can provide an immense amount of happiness, sure, but not when they become distractions.
This isn’t intended as some trite “money can’t buy happiness” speech, don’t misunderstand me. Sure, you can salivate, save, aspire, or whatever; I know I do, and I think it’s a perfectly healthy behavior. I only mean to say that if you spend your time wishing you were wearing Edward Greens instead of enjoying your walk, something is seriously wrong.