I was laying in bed this morning looking through sites on Pinterest and I saw a Pin that read "10 Ways To Be Happier In Your Home". I consider myself to be a REALLY happy person. I love my life, love my family, love my work, and LOVE my sweet husband! If you're a Pinterest person you probably know that most of the links you see like that are pretty generic, however, the quote at the bottom of the Pin said "these are actually worth reading and remembering" so I clicked on it. I'm so glad I did! Every day, no matter how happy you are, there is always room for improvement. I love the list I read and plan to incorporate them into my daily life. I, of course, had to add my two cents below each one AND I added a number 11 :)
1. MAKE YOUR BED EVERYDAY
This is something that I actually try to do every morning. It makes me feel like I am officially up for the day, makes my room look clean and tidy, and sets the stage for a well organized life. I do actually feel better if I walk out of my room everyday with my bed made and I love turning the sheets back at night instead of hopping in to a tangled mess!
2. BRING EVERY ROOM BACK TO "READY"
Take 2-3 minutes in every room to bring it back to "ready" before you leave the house. It truly only takes a few minutes and when you walk in to your home after a long day it is so refreshing to find that your wine glass from the night before is put in the dishwasher and your blanket that you snuggle up in every evening is folded neatly just waiting for you to return to your normal evening position.
3. DISPLAY SENTIMENTAL ITEMS AROUND YOUR HOME
It means so much more to walk through your home and see things that have meaning and sentimental value to you! It is so fun to think of a family member or best friend every time you look at a certain piece of art or every time you pull out your silver serving dish. It's crazy how, at first glance, Grandma's dishes may not exactly be "your style" but when you pair them with more contemporary pieces and fresh flowers they certainly start to feel like your style!
4. START A ONE-LINE-A-DAY GRATITUDE JOURNAL
So this is one that I currently don't do... but I'll try anything once! I figure that it certainly can't hurt to take five seconds before climbing into bed to write down something you're thankful for. Gratitude is so important and if you're blessed then you sure should appreciate it!
5. IF YOU CAN'T GET OUT OF IT, GET INTO IT
Unfortunately, in our home, there is no cleaning fairy, the dishwashing fairy is on vacation, the laundry fairy is on maternity leave, and the fairy that cleans up the dino-size messes in our yard ran off to Vegas! This means that if we want a clean, happy, functional house we get to do those chores ourselves. If you can't "get out of it" which we CANNOT (I get a little irritable if things aren't tidy) then "get into it". My Mom & Dad got us a Bose stereo system that we can hook our iPhone to. Turn on the music, turn it up, and start shaken' those hips as you scrub your dishes! You have one life to live so you might as well be living it while you're folding the laundry or taking your 2-3 minutes to bring things back to "ready".
6. BEFORE YOU GET UP EACH MORNING SET AN INTENT FOR THE DAY
I've noticed that I do better if I have daily goals or tasks. I feel that I'm much more productive, I get less distracted, and I feel so much more accomplished. Don't get me wrong... having intent doesn't always mean work. There are PLENTY of days that my only intent is to have a "me day" that includes a great run, a few hours to read, a nice bottle of wine, hunting for new recipes, and blogging BUT at least there is a plan. The Dali Lama said "Every day, think as you wake up: today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it."
7. DO SMALL FAVORS FOR YOUR HOUSEMATES AND EXPECT NOTHING IN RETURN
So this is a trick that I learned from my husband. I noticed a few years ago that every single time he got up from the couch of an evening he would always say SOMETHING to me and he would never just walk away and disappear. He either says something like "Hey, I'm just going to run upstairs and check some labs on my patient" or "Hey, I'm going to grab a drink" and he always follows his statements with "Do you need anything?". It took a while for it to hit me but I just LOVE that he does that. It's a simple act of kindness, simply letting me know where he's headed, and being courteous enough to ask if I need anything since he's getting up anyway. I've started doing the same for him!
8. CALL AT LEAST ONE FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER A DAY
I think this one is great! While technology is great and Siri is wonderful she is not a human voice. Text messages and emails are not human voices. You can't really laugh via text or email and if you do sometimes the other person may take it as sarcasm when it was genuine. Brian always reminds me that you cannot detect tone via text or email... which is a really great point. So pick up the phone and have a real conversation with someone. I'll admit that I'm not always great at this but I am going to try to be better! I am very guilty of using the excuse that texting is just easier and faster. I am calling myself out and lecturing myself right here, right now... Taryn Breanne- texting and email do not take the place of a phone call! Got it.
9. SPEND MONEY ON THINGS THAT CULTIVATE EXPERIENCES AT HOME
We are loving married life and since the wedding I have really tried to get back into the things that I used to love to do. Since we moved from Tennessee we went straight in to gutting a house, then wedding planning, and now finally back to normal life. I've started blogging again, reading about photography, reading novels, and have spent hours in the kitchen. I've really noticed that if I spend money on thing that involve both Brian and myself it is so much more fun. We do cooking projects together, house projects, weekend getaways... it is really turning out to be much more rewarding that buying the clearance rack black peacoat that I was eyeing at Banana Republic the other day (which I put back on the rack!).
10. SPEND A FEW MINUTES A DAY CONNECTING WITH SOMETHING GREATER THAN YOURSELF
I don't know what you believe in or if you're a spiritual person but I am happy and proud to say that I love the Lord! The power of prayer is amazing. I think it is so important to spend just a few minutes a day "being quiet". Pray, read a novel, take a bubble bath... do something to bring yourself back to baseline and regroup so you're ready to tackle the next challenge the world is going to throw your way because it is inevitable that there will be a next challenge.
11. GET UP IMMEDIATELY UPON WAKING
I had to add this one to the list. I vividly remember sitting in history class as a high school senior. Our history teacher had a list of ways to be successful and happy that he would share with the seniors right before graduation . The one that stuck with me is to get up immediately upon waking. It is amazing how much happier I feel if I just hop out of bed, start my coffee pot, hop in the shower, and do a few of my chores instead of laying in bed to get that extra twenty minutes of sleep. Now... do I always follow this rule? No. However, I can honestly say that when I don't I always wish I would have. It's almost like a free "head start" on the day. I feel less rushed which in turn makes me less stressed and MUCH HAPPIER!
Again, I saw this list and thought it was pretty great. Of course, there is no list that you can follow that will make you happy and each person has different things that make them happy. My advice... whatever it is that makes you happy do it. If you don't know then you need to try your hardest to figure out what it is and do whatever it is you need to do to make it happen! Life is just way too short to live any other way!
Hope y'all have an amazing weekend... I know we're planning on it!