#11 APPRECIATE OTHERS

Happiness Choice  #11 - Appreciate the other people in your life and remember to tell them

SELF ABSORPTION

Life can seem a bit dull and gray at times. We can get caught up in our own little world and forget to appreciate all the small things that we take for granted. We become so absorbed in ourselves and forget to acknowledge the contributions of the people around us. We don't hear the compliments, we don't notice the little acts of kindness, and we wonder why we're feeling a bit flat.

NOTICE THE LITTLE THINGS

One of the keys to happiness is to notice the people around you and the little kindnesses that come your way. Complete strangers can be kind - showing courtesy on the road, letting you into the supermarket queue when you only have a couple of items and they have a trolley full, giving you a smile and a good morning as you go for your daily walk. These are small gestures, but they are positive and affirming and lift our spirits if we take a moment to acknowledge them.

Then there are our friends - those who take the time to connect with us and share our journey. They offer a listening ear when we are having an off day, they laugh with us over a funny story, they compliment us on a new outfit, they let us know we are loved and appreciated. Investing in friendships and connecting with others fills our hearts and gives us a sense that the load is shared. We're not doing life by ourselves, we have people who stand beside us and will support us through the tough times.


It's about connection, energy and vulnerability - Sylvester McNutt

VALUE YOUR SPOUSE

If you are fortunate enough to have a spouse who is your partner through life then take a moment to stop and be grateful. I know that I don't thank my husband enough for the support he gives me. It seems that he is my number one cheer leader these days. Somehow or other he has taken on more than his fair share around the house - the cooking and the cleaning seem to have slowly but surely fallen to him more recently and I'm starting to wonder what to do with myself!

He is also my emotional bastion - when things get tough with our adult kids, he is there to support me. When I feel a bit lost and abandoned he reminds me that I still have someone who loves me and wants to be in my life. When I doubt myself or question the whole purpose of life he is there to hold my hand and help me through - life would be a lot sadder and lonelier without him. Knowing you are loved is a huge boost to your happiness - it doesn't have to come from a spouse, just a special person in your life can be enough.

HUG SOMEONE

Never underestimate the power of a hug. I'm not an effusive hugger who wraps their arms around everyone they come across, but a hug from a friend or family member can be so special. Apparently there's a scientific reason behind it - touching releases oxytocin, and oxytocin is the hormone that underlies trust. It is also an antidote to depressive feelings and brings comfort to our brains. Hugging actually increases our feelings of acceptance and therefore happiness - so never turn down a hug!

Ultimately it all comes down to opening our eyes to the wonderful people in our lives. Tell them you care, tell them what you appreciate about them, open yourself up to deepening friendships and love. The more we appreciate others, the greater our own happiness becomes - and the best offshoot is that they benefit from it too.

Happiness Choice  #11 - Appreciate the other people in your life and remember to tell them

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23 comments

  1. A huge huge huge key to my personal happiness has been the shift to both noticing and always appreciating the little things!!!

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    1. It's so important isn't it Carla? If we sit around waiting for the big moments then we are going to miss out on so many little happinesses along the way.

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  2. What a lovely post. Being in the moment and appreciating is always a good reminder, thanks! Personal touch is important I've learned through the care of my elderly Mother. Having her hair and nails done, the shampoo and attention, is personal touch, not as good as a hug but still a nice touch!

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    1. I think we all love being pampered a little Haralee - it's nice to feel special and I think that's what a hug does too - reminds us that someone cares about us (and it's free!)

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  3. Beautiful...and you are right...a great hug is worth a million dollars...well, maybe not a million but a lot!

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    1. Yeah I'd probably take the million dollars over a hug too Renee, but a hug is definitely worth its weight in gold.

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  4. I absolutely agree with this! Take your eyes from your self and watch the people around you. There are constant kindnesses if you simply take the time to notice.

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    1. I don't think we give people enough credit for being genuinely kind Diane - we hear so much bad stuff, but there's a lot of good out there is we look for it.

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  5. I love this. Most people forget these things, but gratitude for them every day makes one happier!

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    1. Hi Tam! Haven't seen you for a while - hope you're still journeying all over the place and yes Gratitude is definitely the key isn't it?

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  6. It is so easy to get caught up in ourselves and our 'problem of the day'. My recent birthday really showed how much love and support I have in my life and how grateful I am for my husband, children, family and friends. my husband is my number one supporter in all things. I'm so grateful for everyone in my life. Sometimes a hug says so much more than words, Leanne doesn't it? X

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    1. You looked so happy in you birthday photos Sue - and it was from the joy of family and the love they have for you. It's such a blessing to have people who care about us in our lives and we need to tell them that more often don't we?

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  7. I am a hugger so if you meet me, you get one!! My husband is my greatest ally and protector and no more so during my hospital stay and my recovery at home. He is patient and kind and I really learn a lot by observing him. As I grow in independence I am 'needing him' less and in some ways that is a bit sad because we have become closer than ever in these past months. On Thursday we are going out for morning tea to celebrate all that we have gone through and for me to show my appreciation to him.
    Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek. On Mon 11 Sept #LifeThisWeek turns one and that is the prompt! Next week: First car/bike.

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    1. If I ever meet you Denyse I want one of your hugs :) And isn't it lovely to be doing life with a supportive husband? I feel so blessed that I have mine and I know yours has been a rock for you during your recovery - enjoy that morning tea!

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  8. Another beautiful post Leanne. I think hugs are wonderful, no kisses necessary, just a hug.
    When my friend Nora and I get back from our walk and follow up coffee each day we always part at the end of the drive with a big hug. It shows how much we appreciate having each other in our lives. xo

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    1. There's nothing like a hug for showing someone they're special is there? I think I've gotten better with hugging as time's gone by and it helps top up my tank when I'm feeling a bit down or drained. Glad it was only Nora's hugs you mentioned!!

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  9. You are right - it's so easy to get caught up in your own world you forget to stay connected. I've started a new job and combined with my writing goals, I've become somewhat of a hermit. Thank you for reminding me the importance of relationships.

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    1. A new job at our age and stage always takes a fair amount of stress and adjustment Melody so I completely understand why you've become a little less connected. I hope you're going to blog about it as time goes by.

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  10. It doesn't take much to show appreciation Leanne. Even a simple thank you goes a long way. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and linking up at #BloggersPitStop with us.

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  11. I try my best to do this, it's so important! Thank you Leanne for linking up at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. I shared your post on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and Twitter.

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  12. I've pinned, G+ and tweeted my friend. Thanks for linking up at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. Have a great week!

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  13. So true Leanne, it is so easy to start taking everything and everyone for granted, especially our spouses. The important things in life aren't things, they're people and we need to stop a moment and reflect on that. Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom with us at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. Shared!

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  14. More excellent advice! We can improve our own lives as well as the lives of others by following this advice! Thank you for sharing at #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty

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