The Small Stuff Challenge (part 1)

In the busyness of life, sometimes it’s hard to be ‘in the moment’ and take time to enjoy the small things.  But it’s often the smallest things that are the most rewarding and life-affirming, reminding us that life is not meant to be lived on auto-pilot.

Some great “small” stuff: making someone’s day with a kind word, noticing and enjoying a beautiful sunset, and taking in the scent of the air as everything starts to come alive after winter.

I’ve got a challenge for you!  Over the next week, take a moment to celebrate the small stuff.  Have fun with it!  And I’d love it if you’d report back on something “small” you did or enjoyed.  Here are some examples to whet your appetite:

Experience the pure joy of a child’s laugh.

Compliment a stranger with a real, heartfelt compliment (one you’d normally keep to yourself).  You just may make their day!

Do something silly.  Something you normally wouldn’t do.  Even if you feel ridiculous, it’ll briefly snap you out of any sense of monotony.

Put your face up to the sky, close your eyes, feel the warmth of the sun’s rays and appreciate that you are alive.

Secretly put change in someone’s parking meter before it expires.

So let me know – what small stuff did you enjoy in your day?

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Carmen March 8, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Hi Christine,

Love your blog! So important to stop and realize how lucky we really are. Looking forward to celebrating many small special moments with the kids over March break.
Carmen

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Christine (The Brighter Side of Life) March 9, 2012 at 9:29 am

Thanks so much Carmen! I agree – we’re all lucky in so many ways, it’s just a matter of slowing down enough to realize it.

Have a wonderful time with the kids over March break.

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Leslie Gordon March 10, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Such a great idea!! I love it. So often we can be in a not so great mood, but then taking time to notice the small stuff can immediately shift our mood. Thanks for this!

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Christine (The Brighter Side of Life) March 10, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Isn’t it funny how sometimes the small stuff can (at least briefly) push the big issues out of our minds, or shed light and perspective on them? Thanks for commenting!

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Michaela March 10, 2012 at 2:47 pm

The other day, when the weather turned warm, I looked out into to the court and watched E and the neighbour’s kids all playing out side. I had a “moment” She is growing up so fast and becoming so independent! Sniff, sniff! But so proud of her! Oh and I love watching Amelie when the I forget to appreciate the little things, especially when things are getting on top of me! So easy to overlook small pleasures and the things we can do to turn someone else’s day into a great one!

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Christine (The Brighter Side of Life) March 10, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Ahhhh, sounds like a beautiful moment! I know what you mean about the kids growing up so fast and becoming independent! It’s bittersweet. The other day I looked at J, and thought, WOW – you look (and sometimes act) like you’re eight years old now… how is that possible when you’re only five and a half? Sigh. And by the way, you reminded me that I want to watch Amelie!

Isn’t it amazing how a few words can make someone’s day? I remember a time I complimented a shy cashier, and she absolutely beamed… the funny thing is, giving her a genuine compliment and seeing her expression made MY day. Win-win!!! Thanks for commenting.

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alexdk3 March 13, 2012 at 10:01 am

I forgot to write this the other day. It’s been a busy few days here 😉
Anyway, Adrienne and I went grocery shopping on Friday and the cashier did a very good job packing our groceries in our re-usable bags. I told her she did and said I was grateful for that because it’s getting rare than they take the time to pack groceries well. She wasn’t smiling very much while she was working but as soon as I told her that she had the most beautiful radiant smile on her face!

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Christine (The Brighter Side of Life) March 13, 2012 at 10:06 am

That’s beautiful, Alex! You just brought a smile to my face as well! Thanks for commenting. 🙂

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thehubeteam March 23, 2012 at 2:48 pm

Such a great blog post! Thanks for taking time to remind us all of how much our actions mean to others, and for the encouragement to enjoy life and all it’s surprises and moments! xo

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Christine (The Brighter Side of Life) March 23, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Thanks so much, Hube Team! I appreciate your comment. And it’s wonderful seeing you in action, helping others in various ways. You’re inspiring! 🙂

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Ida Mae West-Simone September 29, 2012 at 1:07 pm

Dear Christine,
I love the suggestions you give here, because the small stuff really means so much. There really is a snowball effect with the little things, whether positive or negative, and we all have the power to create a positve shift in the world. Thank you for your great post!

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christineonthebrighterside October 2, 2012 at 10:44 am

Thank you so much, Ida Mae! You’re right, the little things result in a snowball effect, either positive or negative. And we all have the ability to turn things in a positive direction, even on the really tough days.

When we look at – and really see – the “small stuff,” it isn’t small at all, is it?

Thanks for commenting!

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