In the last couple of years, pleasure has been something that most of us have put on the back burner as we focused on surviving the pandemic. There was so much fear, ignorance and devastating loss, that it was hard to be open to pleasure. But what if the pandemic was really a call to look beyond the usual ways and places we found pleasure, and look at celebrate and be grateful for the simple, small things that bring joy to our daily life?
“If we can experience the ways that delight travels the same pathways as despair, we see the trove of enriched awareness that waits in our vulnerability.”Kristi Nelson, Wake Up Grateful
Open to Pleasure
I begin with what is becoming a daily habit of pausing, focusing on my breath and becoming present to the moment.
Reflecting On Moments of Joy and Small Pleasures
I turn my attention to the small pleasures and moments of joy that are part of my day to day life. I open my senses to what I can see, smell, hear, feel that gives me grateful pleasure. It’s best to write this down
- The smell of rain on the dry earth – petrichor, I think it’s called.
- Lucky licking my fingers to wake me up in the morning.
- Our community dogs happily eating their food.
- Flowers blooming in our garden.
- José quietly doing chores to make my life easier.
- Fresh herbs from our garden.
- Cooking something that we both enjoy eating.
- The comfort of my bed at the end of the day.
- The smell of freshly washed clothes.
I could go on. As I recall these things, more blessings come to mind, reminding me of the abundance I enjoy.
Not what we have but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.John Petit-Senn
Seeing Responsibilities As Privileges
A small change in our perspective – reframing our responsibilities as privileges – can turn routine tasks or chores into pleasurable experiences. For example, if I see walking Lucky as a privilege rather than a responsibility, I began to enjoy the walks more. Or when I see washing the dishes as a time for reflection and mindfulness, then it becomes a pleasurable activity.
Do you open yourself to the simple pleasures that are part of your day to day life and find that it gives you a grateful perspective?