Today is the perfect day to be happy

Being mindful by finding my happy in the everyday little things:

After a dark-cloud-in-my-head kind of weekend, I took myself out for an Artist’s Date for a change of scenery and to bring a little sunshine to my spirits.

I vowed to be as mindful as I possibly could, focusing on the happy in every precious moment.

And it worked.

Here are just 10 of the happy moments that brought some sunshine to my morning:

1. I started by listening to and watching this beautiful little bird singing its heart out as I waited for my bus.

bus stop birdsong

2. I gazed out the bus window at the passing greenery which has awoken from its winter slumber and has gloriously sprung to life. The luscious trees, blooming spring flowers and piercing blue sky lit up my journey into the city.

3. I mindfully ate my brunch, savouring every mouthful of my Eggs Royale and decaf soy flat white.

4. I slowly perused the shelves of our city’s main library looking for new fiction to borrow, feeling thankful for this utterly brilliant free service.

5. I happily distributed a handful of my Kindness Cards with a positive message written on the back around the city for people to discover.

positive messages

6. I embraced my inner child by buying a pair of fun sunnies to make me smile every time I wear them.

Green heart sunnies

7. I used some of my unspent birthday money to buy a bright, happy vest top with the slogan: today is the perfect day to be happy (so let’s be happy).

Perfect day to be happy vest

8. I treated myself to a little bunch of orange gerberas to brighten up my bedroom.

bright happy gerberas

9. I took advantage of my new status as a Waitrose Card Holder and sipped on a free cuppa herbal tea and took home a free newspaper (why did I not know about this sooner?).

10. I accepted that I needed to crash out on my bed for the rest of the day, as I arrived home wiped out but very happy.

fuel tank empty Bitmoji


Act of kindness #5: Appreciating good service

Being kind by writing a thank you message for my lovely waitress:

I’ve just enjoyed a yummy brunch at Bills, thanks to a much appreciated Christmas Gift Card from a thoughtful friend.

My waitress was really lovely. She was kind and friendly and I felt very well looked after.

Having been a waitress in my mid-late teens, I know how hard work it can be. I also know how much a simple thank you from a customer can mean. I can’t bear it when people don’t acknowledge waitstaff or treat them discourteously. And so I always make sure to smile and show my appreciation.

So as well as thanking my waitress personally, I decided to write her a thank you message on one of my kindness cards.

Thankfully, I always carry a blank kindness card or two in my bag. I wrote a message and propped it up on my table as I left so she would discover it when she was preparing the table for the next (hopefully appreciative) customer.

Day 21: Artist’s Date

Being grateful for a yummy brunch on my Artist’s Date:

Today it was time for a change of scenery.  I needed to get out of the house. And thankfully I felt up for going on an Artist’s Date.

I’ve been taking myself on Artist’s Dates since first reading about them in Julia’s Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way, around ten years ago.

“Artist Dates are assigned play,” says Cameron. And the best thing is that you don’t have to be an artist to go on an Artist’s Date.

The idea is to take yourself on a date once per week to “fill the well” of creativity.  There are the rules:

  • You must do the activity alone.  The idea is to get in touch with your inner creative self, to spark your imagination, and having anyone else with you will change your behaviour.
  • The activity should be fun.  Find something that appeals to you and do it.

Of course, the nature of an Artist’s Date can be something different to everyone.

Amongst my favourites are: a long walk in the country or along the coastline;  a visit to a Farmer’s Market; a nose around a photography exhibition; a visit to the cinema; a day trip to somewhere new; and a delicious brunch in a nice cafe.

Ever since discovering brunch culture when I spent time in the US and Canada, it’s become my absolute favourite meal to enjoy out. I love catching up with friends over brunch, and I also really love my solo dates.

Taking myself out for brunch provides a welcome break from my current mainly sedentary lifestyle. It feels like I’m living a normal life again. I try to go a couple of times a month, depending on health and wealth of course.

This morning, I went to my favourite brunch place Bill’s, and enjoyed Eggs Royale; a toasted English muffin topped with smoked salmon, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce, and finished with a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds.

Yum. Yum. Yum.

Upon returning, I feel restored, refreshed and rejuvenated.

Hooray for Artist’s Dates. Hooray for yummy brunches.

So with this in mind, my happy for today is being grateful for my yummy brunch on my Artist’s Date.