My guest this week is Wendy from The Art of ‘Why Not’?. I have known Wendy for around two years now and although we have only met online through blogging she is one of my dearest blogging friends. Such a warm and caring lady, I’ve been wanting her to be a guest for quite a while and now we have finally achieved that. In her post, Wendy discusses Celebrating Life Now by doing more of what makes you happy. We can all certainly do with more happiness in our lives.
Be sure to check out Wendy’s website and social media links at the end of this post as I’m sure you will reading her thoughts as much as I do.
Happy birthday, Sue! I am honored to be here to help you celebrate and to participate in Sizzling Sue’s Sixtieth Selebrations! I was so excited when you told me your theme for this month – Celebrate Life Now – because it is something I’ve been thinking about for some time!
When I turned 50 last year, I compiled a list of 50 experiences I wanted to complete in 12 months. While I am excited to have accomplished many of the aspirations on my list, I’m far from experiencing them all. In the process, however, I’ve learned a great deal about myself, what I enjoy, and what doesn’t particularly excite me! I’ve also learned that it is extremely easy to let intentions wait until “someday.”
My list of 50 experiences was perhaps a little …err, ridiculously over-ambitious. Nonetheless, I did discover a few strategic actions that kept many of these experiences from remaining merely a “maybe someday” idea.
6 Practical Ways To Do More of What Makes You Happy
Contemplate and Evaluate
Take the time to figure out what is really important to you. It is way too easy to make an arbitrary list of fun ideas and pick the most convenient or easiest ones to do first. Is that really how you want to spend your time, though? Sometimes what sounds great initially isn’t the best use of time, for us or for others. Two of my favorite ways to think things through is to write and pray.
- Write or journal – As you allow your thoughts to flow uninhibited, you may be surprised where they take you. Somewhere between the lines, you will likely find a few nuggets that really speak to you.
- Pray or meditate – As much as I think I know where I want to go, I am amazed how many times God has redirected me. Sometimes it’s a complete turnaround, sometimes it’s just a slight course adjustment.
Don’t rush this part. Your time is precious, so invest it well!
Have a Heart-to-Heart
Confide in those close to you. If your family and close friends know what your goals are, you’ll be amazed how supportive they may be. I was hesitant to do this. Some of the things high on my list seemed frivolous, perhaps even a little odd, and I didn’t want to be laughed at. Why I thought the people I love would laugh at me is anyone’s guess, but that’s probably a topic for another post!
So even if you think you’ll look a wee bit eccentric, go ahead and spill the beans. Then be amazed how your people will come along beside you and help make things happen!
Engage Your Community
Whether introverted, extroverted, or somewhere in between, we all need community. You may not need as much interaction with others as I do (I need a LOT!), but no one is an island. Friends can energize and encourage us. If we let them, they can also hold us accountable to the priorities we set for ourselves.
Friends can also provide the “fun factor,” and if we’re talking about celebrating life now, we’ve got to include the fun! Most activities are more enjoyable with others, so don’t be shy about asking someone to join you.
Want to read more? Join a book club! (Or several! I founded 1 club and joined 2 others this year!).
Want to try a new sport but feel a little intimidated? Ask someone to go to a lesson with you! (A new friend and I are taking paddle board lessons soon!).
I have met many new ladies this year just by accepting a couple of invitations and mustering the courage to extend a few invites of my own!
No matter how good my intentions or how fun the activity, it just won’t happen until it’s on my calendar. So take a few minutes every week and schedule in your most important priority.
Make any necessary arrangements (schedule appointments, extend invitations, gather any needed supplies, etc) so that when the time comes, all you have to worry about is having a good time!
Pay the Tab
It doesn’t always cost money to do something we enjoy, but occasionally it does. If you are like me, once you’ve got a little cash on the line, you are more likely to follow through. Go ahead and reserve the tickets, enroll in the class, or buy the new dress. The hard part is now done, so you can just enjoy yourself!
With all this talk of “making things happen,” some of the best moments will always be the spontaneous ones. Make sure you leave space in your week for life to just happen. You know what I’m talking about: the last minute pizza night with friends, the early morning decision to day trip to the beach, the late night walk with your special someone. These impromptu experiences are truly the moments in life worth celebrating. Don’t miss them!
I am the queen of good intentions and those who know me know this well. Yet, life is way too short to make procrastination my sharpest skill. So here’s to today! I hope we all find a small way to make this day just a little bit better.
What about you? How do you find ways to do more of what makes you happy?
Thank you, Sue, for giving me the opportunity to reflect on more ways to Celebrate Life Now! Happy birthday, my friend!
[clickToTweet tweet=”Time is precious. Invest it well! Do more of what makes you happy. Celebrate Life Now!” quote=”Time is precious. Invest it well! Do more of what makes you happy. Celebrate Life Now!”]
Wendy’s writing journey began as a way to document her “empty nest” endeavors to live her motto: “Every day, just a little bit better!” She encourages women to find extraordinary moments in the midst of ordinary days by living intentionally in whatever season God has placed them.
Happily married for 25 years and mom to one adult daughter, her current happy place is in and around all things water. Or in a book. Or both!
You can find her sharing her stories at TheArtOfWhyNot.com.