I am reading “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin, and I have to say it’s been a while since something resonated with me that much. Her “epiphany” is one that has happened for me several times over the past few years, but I was too complacent, tired, stressed, and worried (all or some of the above) to do anything about it. Sure, I make New Year’s Resolutions with the best of them. I make elaborate to do lists (in spreadsheets, on Remember the Milk…) Heck, I have even done a month-by–month implementation plan for my resolutions – January is usually about exercise and losing weight, February about clearing paper clutter… You get my drift.
Like the author, I have a wonderful life. I have a husband who loves me (most of the time.) I have a little boy that gets more adorable by the day (speaking in sentences! making rude noises! teasing! making jokes!) I have a great job, that I (mostly) enjoy. My family is loving and supportive. We will have plenty of adventure in our lives this coming year with a new baby and an international move. I am generally happy.
Honestly though, there are things life that sap my energy and joy. The clutter/general mess in my house. The overflowing inbox at my office. The never-ending financial papers everywhere. The guilt of not spending enough time with my family. The very very long to-do list that never seems to get done.
So in December (why wait for January after all?) I will start my own Happiness Project. And December will be all about establishing a few routines and making a few changes that I hope will start to reduce my stress, and like Gretchen’s January project, restore my energy.
Here’s the list:
December – Reduce Sources of Stress
- Make the bed.
- Take a walk (third trimester is not kind right now, so 10-15 minutes will count)
- Reduce work inbox to zero.
- Declutter 15 minutes every day.
- Deal with finances and paperwork for 15 minutes every day
- Be kind.
- Celebrate Christmas.
- Write one sentence in my gratitude journal daily.
Today’s happiness? My son opening his very first Christmas stocking (handmade by his Grandmother of course) and finding a soft toy Christmas moose. Pretty cute.