Numbers 1-10 of 100+ Things That Make Me Happy

March 16, 2010

I recently made this post about creating a list of 100+ Things That Make Me Happy and why I found that to be a really helpful partner in managing my weight the low-stress way last year.

Make a List

As I mentioned last week, I’m going to post some of my 100+ Things That Make Me Happy every week — and hope to get well beyond 100.

1.  Cook something yummy

I spent years not cooking.  I didn’t know how and  I didn’t enjoy it.  But of course losing weight and eating out aren’t very compatible so I did the minimal amount.  Most of my food was pretty boring and for a long time that didn’t bother me.  When I met my husband, he was the cook.  But after a while it just seemed unfair that he was always having to cook when we were both tired from the day, and he is not a very healthy cook (although he is good!).  I started to cook more to balance things in our relationship than anything else, but surprised myself when I found that I actually liked the cooking.  It helped that I took some cooking classes and read a lot of cookbooks.   Several years later, cooking is something I actually ENJOY, but most especially when something turns out well and is really yummy.

2. Trimming the rosebushes

I hated yard work growing up.  It was one of my mother’s favorite ways to punish us as kids, and that’s not a great way to raise future gardeners.   Much to my surprise, I found tending to the rosebushes was a lot of fun and very satisfying.  Cut a little bit here, watch a shoot start & a new bloom a few weeks later.  We have lots of rosebushes now in our garden, and I love taking care of them.  Most of the rest of the garden work is still a drag to me, but the rosebushes make me happy.

3. Doing art projects

I’m not skilled, but I enjoy doing artisitic things.  If I had infinite time and energy I’d take a drawing class and a painting class & I’d buy tons of art supplies.  Alas, both time and energy are limited, so I don’t do much of it, but when I do I’m always pleased with the feelings of the process (even if the results are pretty lousy).

4. Taking sunbaths!

I started doing this last summer when my vitamin D levels turned out to be deficient.   I loved the process of going out in the sun with the express purpose of just lying there for 10 or 15 minutes.  Hard to do with a job, and hard to do without a private yard, but it was a really nice few minutes for several weeks, and something I am looking forward to in the coming months – at least once in a while on weekends.  For day to day vitamin D I take supplements (and periodic prescription doses) but I really loved the sunbaths.

5. Having a clean house – and sometimes the act of getting it that way

I don’t like the routine of cleaning a house, but I like the result, I like the smell of a clean house, and l like looking at something that was grungy and is now clean.  Sometimes if I can spend a short amount of time transforming grungy to clean I even like the process of cleaning, but that has to be short and show a visible difference — routine cleaning doesn’t give me that pleasure.

6. Not having piles of clutter

Interesting that I found this on my list, because piles of clutter are again all over my house, and I forgot how much I like having them GONE.  I did make major strides last year in getting the clutter piles cut dramatically down – there is now just one main area that gets the clutter bug for me personally, but in our house my husband & stepson grow clutter in several locations, and I’ve maybe let that get out of hand.  Clear clutter-free and organized spaces are just so much more pleasant.

7. Being on top of projects and paperwork

It’s true that this is a great feeling, and it’s also true that this is an ongoing battle.  I almost always have more projects that I can reasonably manage, and that often leaves me feeling that I’m behind on something, not on top of everything.   But having systems that work really makes this run smoother, and I’ve worked those out to be pretty functional for me over the years.

8. Doing things that are supposed to be healthy for me, like taking vitamins & drinking green tea

I now get great happiness from knowing I’m doing things to take care of myself & my health.  I’ve even managed to switch my mindset to make Regular Exercise one of these things that I do to take care of my health, something that I refer to as Dieting Nirvana, because I think it’s the ultimate place to be.  Making choices that make us healthier AND happier.   For me, taking vitamins & drinking green tea are some of my daily routines that fit in this category — little acts of self-care that really matter to me on many levels.

9. Drinking good teas (black, herbal, green)

I grew up in Denver Colorado, home of Celestial Seasonings teas, and have been an avid herbal tea drinker most of my life.  I now am an avid tea drinker period, drinking black tea in the morning (usually instead of coffee, sometimes decaf, sometimes not).  I drink a big pot of green tea now usually mid-morning.  If I’m on the road I have travel sachets of green tea I take with me, and I have little packs of the powdered matcha tea that I sometimes mix into water bottles too.  I take the tea thing seriously, because I really like it and I’ve found it puts a good focus on my day — If I’m focused on drinking my various types of teas, I’m not focusing on snacks and other things.  It also means I’m drinking a lot.  After the green tea is done, I usually move to herbal teas in the afternoon and will drink them most of the rest of the day, ending with a hot cup as I go to bed.  I do drink water along the way too – so yes, I spend a lot of time looking for bathrooms along the way.  Green tea is interesting because last year I didn’t much care for it, and today it’s my favorite.  Our tastes definitely change with time and exposure.

10. Playing sudoku

Silly time waster, but not as dumb as some things are, I enjoy playing sudoku.  I don’t like the really hard levels, and I don’t like ANY of the variations (the counting or math ones).  But these little puzzles are a good way for me to calm an anxious mind, and can get me to relax enough to go to sleep when I’m wound up, and can also be used effectively when I have time to kill waiting somewhere.  I play on my iPhone, on the Nintendo DS & on paper.   I tend to go in cycles, not playing at all for several months, but I also like to know it’s there as a short little treat when I want it.

I’m also updating the page “Relax” with this list.

I’d love it if you play along too!

What are some of the things that make you happy?

If you join in making this list, please let me know – I’m going to create a list of those playing along in the “Relax” page

Previous post:

Next post: