As you read of my love of pleasure, do think of and note all the ways you can add delight in your life!
I had my 59th birthday party on a Sunday several years ago. It was sheer delight. I had thoroughly enjoyed the show of Bubble Man at Seattle Center on Kid's Day and arranged to have him for my party. For an hour, six kids and about 20 adults sat on my deck and grinned to Garry Golightly's patter and his bubbles of all sizes, from all manner of "cheap toys."
It wouldn't have been the same without my granddaughter Kayla, then four, and the other children. Their faces lit up. They chased the "unbelievabubbly" big bubbles. They cared not a whit for propriety. What lessons we can learn from children. How to follow joy, revel in the moment, laugh easily and expect life to give them pleasure, right here, right now.
That was followed by roses from my son and from John, a guest I hadn't met, who had called about a room to rent. When he presented them, he sang an opera aria. He sang a shorter one to greet Kayla, as well as Figaro and another couple songs to the applause of the 20-30 people. Lily suggested a "sound bath" so I sat in the center and people toned various sounds. Lovely! There was violin, guitar, harmonica, drums, shakers and people's animated singing. The potluck was great. My friends met my friends — the best gift I could offer others.
You may say, "Well, that was a party. What about my daily home and career life?". I would answer "You can find or create a reason to celebrate almost anywhere, if you make it a priority."
The first few weeks of that year I had been conscious of my resolution to experience and express joy at least two hours every day. Like many other intentions, it lost its urgency as life took over. I wanted it back so I clipped a paper on the curtain with the words "express joy". It remind me of how fully alive I am when I am laughing, excited, delighted, animated, enjoying new experiences and connecting deeply with someone in my life. God in N.D. Walsch's Conversations with God says it best: "It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you are fully expressing all of who you are."
As I sometimes do with words I'm drawn to, I opened my 1316 page thesaurus and noted some words that come under "celebrate" — make merry, revel, let oneself go, cut loose, kick up one's heels, jubilate, sound a fanfare, salute, proclaim and shout from the housetops. When I looked up "joy", I found pleasure, playfulness, indulge in, bask in, appreciate, savor, zestfulness, gusto, exuberance, friskiness, enchantment, elation, ecstasy, bliss, frivolity, walk on air, on cloud nine, luxuriate in, wallow in, groove on, relish, gladden, comfort, relaxed and at home. Would you like more of those experiences in your lives? What will it take for you to celebrate now. Not when the kids are grown, not when you're retired and not when your bills are paid, but now.
Will you be posting it in big words where you'll be reminded? Will you be getting support from a coach, a counselor, a friend or an email buddy to bring that desired quality to your life? Will you be setting aside 10 or 30 minutes in your planner each day for self-indulgence? (That novel, that hot bath, that photo album or that CD.)
I'll happily offer a complimentary 30-minute coaching call (206-938-8385) to support you in clarity, focus, motivation, momentum on any goal you have, especially around being happier. Right now, I'm going to celebrate by eating my party leftovers. What will you do?
From Here to Eternity, starring Burt Lancaster as Sgt. Milt Warden and Deborah Kerr, as Karen Holmes, the "sexy, infamously promiscuous" wife of his commanding officer.
Karen: I never knew it could be like this. Nobody ever kissed me the way you do.
Karen: No, nobody.
Warden: Not even one? Out of all the men you've been kissed by?
Karen: Now that would take some figuring.
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