little

Time and time again we are reminded of how the little things in life are the most important. As we grow, responsibilities grow, expectations grow, and pressure builds from society and people around us to do more to get further in life, and become “successful”. As we walk that journey we tend to forget all the little pieces of beauty that brought us happiness before we redefined happiness into something we are waiting to experience once we have achieved a list of things.

Tonight my family are out for the evening at a mothers and kids sleepover, so as I enjoy a rare evening of having the house to myself I started to reflect on all the little things I do everyday that make me happy, here they are.

1. Coffee

“It does not matter where you are from or how you feel, there is always peace in a strong cup of coffee” Gabriel Ba

I love coffee, pretty much to the point that I leave the “good” out of “good morning” until I have had my first sip. Nespresso has been my go to coffee recently, and everything about the preparation process makes me happy. Watching the coffee pour into my cup, catching the aroma as it continues to drip, and sitting down at my desk to read the morning news, “cough” twitter “cough”, and slowly sip away, just makes me smile.

I feel that being able to enjoy the entire process makes my morning coffee more of a fun experience to look forward to, that a simple process to start my day. Whatever your morning ritual is, take a little more time to enjoy the steps that go into it. Then you will start to see this new appreciation for it come about and make your morning more meaningful.

2. Asking People How They Are

“Ask yourself: Have you been kind today? Make kindness your daily modus operandi and change your world “ Annie Lennox

Whenever I walk into work I like to ask people how they are. What I have noticed is that a lot of us say hi or good morning, and don’t really take the conversation that much further. Whenever I say hello to someone, I follow up with the question “How are you doing today?”. The awesome thing about asking that is the usual response is “I am doing well thank you for asking”. There are two important takeaways from this simple interaction; one is the connection they feel to you since you actually cared enough to ask. Second is the reminder to them that things are actually going well and releasing positive energy inside them.

By observing the warmth they feel from you asking that question you automatically start to feel better. You brought a smile to someone’s face, you reminded them of how positive things are, and if you keep doing that over and over throughout your day think of how many more people you helped feel just that little bit better. It’s a beautiful thing.

3. Coming Home 

“If home is where the heart is, then wherever they are, I am home” Unknown

To me coming home is like this big celebration. Every evening I knock on the door I get excited as I hear my kids rushing to open it. I am greeted with hugs, kisses, and whatever they are eating smothered on my clothes, I love it. My wife then finds her way through the pack to give me a hug and kiss then ask me how my day went. After the greetings we all sit down for dinner and jokes, because not one dinner goes by without someone doing something that just cracks us up.

Now coming home after work can be where you end your day, or where you start a new part of it. If you put in an effort to make coming home a part of your day that is filled with love, joy, and energy, it lights up your soul and the souls of the people you love. So when you get home tomorrow, make it an event, make it something to remember.

4. Praying

“I believe in prayer. It is the best way to draw strength from heaven” Josphine Baker 

Praying is like a reset button that I hit five times a day. Prayer, first and foremost is to connect with Allah, secondly and more personally however it is a short reminder of all that is important, and that is my faith and the pursuit of becoming a better human being. The process of cleaning yourself during wodhu, standing beside a brother, or sister (if you are a lady reading this), and praying for everything good in this world really allows you to bring your spirit to the forefront of your life. With a world that is constantly asking us to hurry up, it is through prayer that we can simply say; right now I am going to slow it down and focus on me.

5. Reading

“Reading is dreaming with open eyes” Dr. Seuss

If life is all about adventure, reading is a first class ticket there every moment you pick up a book. Taking some time to read everyday opens my mind up to new information, it takes me into the lives of the characters, new ideas, thoughts, and stories. The best part about reading is that I feel I have grown as a human being, that I am more informed about the world, and how we as a people play our part in it.

Try it, you’ve got nothing to lose, take some time everyday to turn everything off, find a comfortable place, and just read. Let yourself get lost in the stories, and enjoy the adventure.

So those are a few of the little things that happen everyday that make me happy. Now I know they sound like no big deal, but they are not meant to be. You see true happiness is being able to find joy in everything around you, to be appreciative of the blessings you have, and be more present in the moment. By noticing the little things in your life that make you smile you soon realize that the doors of happiness are always open, all you need to do is walk through.