It’s the little things.
I recently saw this printed on a set of candles. While I very much identified with a couple of other ones in the set— “Every Moment Matters” and “Live Passionately”—I scoffed at this phrase (and the other declaring “(something about) Sparkle.”) I ended up not purchasing the set, not thinking twice about the discarded phrase.
Until this morning. I think a lot when I swim. This is a phenomenal recent transition for me, as I spent the first 14 years of my triathlon career only able to count or think through the various parts of the swim stroke while my head was under water. It has made swimming much more enjoyable. (But this isn’t the point today, maybe in a later blog.)
Today while swimming and thinking I found myself reflecting on how much I love my new goggles. They were an investment, but truly a game changer in comfort, anti-fog, and significantly lowering the severity and time of marks around my eyes post swim. These goggles do bring me joy.
They are a little thing.
Since I had miles left to swim I had plenty of time to consider more daily little things that bring me joy: my morning coffee; hitting all of my targets in a single workout; a moment of laughter with my husband; watching my boys do the pre-basketball game handshake; when an athlete has a micro breakthrough; a silly home design video game I play on my phone; waving at one of my friends when I randomly see them on the road; the amazing beauty of a sunset… I could go on and on (it became quite an extensive list!)
These are all little things.
It is easy to get caught up in breezing through the positive and negative little things in our days with the anticipation of big things. There is nothing wrong with looking forward with excitement for opportunities to enjoy things like celebrating, racing, making a real difference in the world, winning big, or traveling. We just need to be aware of our desire to skip from one big thing to the next.
Life is full of little things to be grateful for, and this helps you see problems as little as well.
Sometimes really bad things happen to people. This is a part of the human experience, and unfortunately often they are out of our control. But if we see most of our daily problems as they are—little— we can stop catastrophizing them. We can feel through them in the moment and move on. No more constant victimization. More joy.
Little (and big) bad things happen to everyone. Let the little stay little. Pause to acknowledge them all. Don’t run past the positive little ones in a hurried and trancelike state, missing the beauty and joy that is present every day in your life. And don’t distract from the negative ones, instead take the time to be present with them, investigate them, and oftentimes recognize that it probably isn’t really that bad.
Practicing in the daily little will help you fully enjoy the hell out of the positive big ones, or fully process and grieve through the seemingly overwhelming negatives.
So, it really is the little things. But, I am not going back for the candles. As of right now I can’t find a way to enjoy the one about the sparkle. Maybe in my next swim. 😉
P.S. Speaking of little and big things– thank you to all who kindly reached out in any way over the recent death of my big, goofy Rottweiler, Enzo. I am sure I will blog about the experience at some point. But I do want you all to know that the “little” extensions of care make a big impact on my heart. Thank you.
Swimmers who are curious about these life-changing goggles… check out: