Invigorating our everydays takes conscious effort, but it need not be hard. In fact, once we shift the way we look at the routine of our days, we infuse positive habits that provide the levitation to make our everydays extraordinary.
Now if you were to search “how to improve your life” on the internet, you would discover thousands of posts enumerating similar and exactly the same ideas from getting enough sleep to decluttering and everything else in between. In fact, some of the suggestions have been shared here on TSLL blog; however, the specific intention of why we want to improve our lives needs to be clear in our minds so that we will recognize the change when it arrives. And when we can recognize the change, we are better able to appreciate it and not become acclimated to the change so as to then seek out something new to change rather than savor what we so diligently welcomed into our lives.
I have been on this journey with you for nearly 10 years since TSLL first began sharing how to live simply luxuriously. I have been learning, sharing, stumbling and sharing how I continued to strive forward on a path that spoke to me hoping to inspire in some small, yet significant way you as well to strive forward on your own journey and cultivate your unique life of true contentment. With each passing year, more and more writers are inspired to write their own blog posts, create their own blogs and share their unique journey. Such self-advocacy, courage and positive growth stories are inspiring.
With that said, as TSLL nears its 10th anniversary, I have been taking time to examine exactly how to continue to bring TSLL readers and listeners and viewers the best original content that continues to inspire, expand and cultivate enjoyment and delight. And while I am still in the exploration period of this task, what I do know is while I am a private individual, readers as well as myself gravitate toward posts that are infused ever-so-slightly with a personal touch. In other words, as I mentioned above, we live in a world, compliments of the internet, in which we can find what we are looking for in infinite amounts, but I want to ensure that when you stop by TSLL you know you will read, discover and enjoy posts and content that has a simply luxurious life touch. Whether that includes a French or British touch, or a Bend, Oregon, or simply Oregon touch, it will always include the guiding premise of living a life of quality over quantity to elevate your everyday life and in some way or another be inspired by my sincere curiosity for living life well.
So today, I look forward to sharing with you five simple new ways to invigorate your everyday. Each of these discoveries were made and put into practice in my own life and have found me tickled with the elevation they have brought into my everydays. I hope you enjoy and discover how wonderfully powerful they can be in your life as well.
1.Assume ignorance rather than malice
“Never assume malice when stupidity will suffice.“
Now the exact origin of the above quote is unclear, but when our administrator shared it with us last year and again this year, I knew the repetition exhibited the importance of giving people the benefit of the doubt. There are many reitierations of this quote, but my interpretation of “stupidity” is ignorance, as I find it to be a gentle way to extend to others room for mistakes and the opportunity for learning to occur. Not necessarily that we will teach that someone something directly, but coming to the understanding that sometimes we step into a situation and we assume (which has a habit of getting us into trouble) that those in the room know what we know or have had similar life experiences as we have. Even though while we may know, after taking a step back, that this could not possibly be true, if pain is felt by someone’s actions or words, we jump to protect ourselves and may jump over giving someone leniency. In other words, when we assume the worst in people, we eliminate the grey area of possibilities as to why someone may be doing what they are doing that we wish they weren’t doing.
When we choose to let go of assuming the worst about people who have hurt us or are challenging our authority in a way that is uncalled for, we conserve energy which helps to keep us calm enabling each of us to make better decisions as we work through the unwanted situation.
2. Flip the traditional Monday “yuck” mentality on its head
In a recent IG post (see below), I shared how on this particular Monday I decided to make a dessert often reserved for weekends, and just savored that particular evening. To say it was a great Monday was an understatement, and not only for the sweet ending to the day.
While there are many reasons people speak negatively of Mondays, it is largely because we aren’t living in the present. Instead, we are looking ahead to the weekend, we are looking ahead to where we want to be, going along with what the culture purports we should not enjoy. And while during my summer schedule, Mondays are hands down one of my favorite days of the week, it is a conscious choice to wake up on Monday during the school year and get excited and determined to make the day awesome and amazing.
But that is just the trick: It is a conscious choice, and more often than not, Mondays turns out to be memorable in beautiful ways.
3. Ask for what would make a positive difference in your life
Case in point. Over the past few years I came to realize what would be a powerful positive in my teaching career. Part of the reason I was able to discern powerful positive was a necessity to me was recognizing that I did not feel it was present any longer. While it took me some time to work up the courage to ask for what would be beneficial (it was not monetary or an expense of time in any way), what I received in return after asking far exceeded in a positive way what I had been hoping for and knew would be helpful to improving my work environment. The funny fact was, I had never asked until that moment for what I needed. If only I would have asked sooner.
Initially, we must have clarity about what we think we need and certainty that what we are choosing to seek out will quench what we hope. But once we have done the homework, along the way learning something about ourselves, we should ask for what would bring a positive difference into our lives. Often the positive difference will extend far beyond us to those we work with, live with and love. So why not ask?
4. Do something each morning to energize your day
In episode #243 of The Simple Sophisticate podcast, I shared 12 Ways to Make Mornings Magical, Mindful and the Foundation of a Great Day and Great Success. And perhaps your morning is already working just as you have hoped and worked hard to design. That is awesome and something to celebrate. But for anyone who needs something to change, something different to improve their mornings, as I was looking to do when the school year began this past month, try to find something that gives you a boost.
For me, I added a morning walk before I drive to school to teach for the day. This daily morning walk before the school day was something I have nver been able to do consistently because classes began so early and it required me to walk in the dark nearly all nine months of the year – not something I am particularly fond of.
Enter a new (and later) school day schedule. With school beginning one hour later, the boys and I take a morning walk around the neighborhood, greet the day before the day greets us, walk through our yard and literally smell the roses (the rose above dusted with snow was seen and enjoyed this past Monday). In fact, it is this walk with Mother Nature that invigorates me. One morning, a full double rainbow was draped over my house for a full five minutes, but only five minutes, and if I had not been outside walking, I would never have realized it was there.
The key is to find something that energizes you. The mornings are the time in which the outside world has not stepped fully into our lives yet, schedules haven’t had the chance to be derailed and we tend to have more control over our pace. Find one new habit or routine to add to the start of your day and perhaps your day too will start off on strong positive footing.
5. Cook that new recipe you have been wanting to try (or at least season beloved dishes with really good coarse sea salt ;))
I am going to end on a food note because, well, over the past four years, it has been my exploration in my own kitchen that has brought me a lot of joy and discovery. While I have enjoyed cooking and baking since I was a young girl, it was, as I have shared in the past, my time in Bend that has encouraged me in many ways to get into the kitchen and have fun. I have more recipes I want to explore from the cookbooks I read for pleasure, and making time to try something new certainly provides for moments of celebration when it all works out. And when it does not work out as planned, I learn something new about the cooking process.
Either way, the cooking keeps me in the present moment, requires of me to step out of my day no matter what may have happened and brings me home where I can fully relax and just be with my boys, letting them taste-test with me along the way.
When we choose to try something new, it can be initially exhirating in theory, but intimidating in practice. However, no matter what the outcome, what we discover is something new either about ourselves or the world, and that knowledge can lead us in all sorts of different directions we may have never considered or entertained as something we might have the opportunity to experience.
When we view the everyday as an opportunity rather than a drudgery to make it through, we have already succeeded in elevating our everydays, and when such a practice becomes habituated, more extraordinary moments are savored each and every day. Wishing you a wonderful day, everyday, of elevated moments to savor.