As published in Project Happiness
One of my very favourite cartoons is this one from Michael Leunig. It encapsulates how life sometimes feels - and how - when things are very tough - it is the small things that get you through.
We are constantly challenged - on a daily basis - to rise above what we might consider our primitive response, to engage our brain, to make decisions no matter how minute on a moment to moment basis. We tackle traffic, a rude fellow human, a washing machine that breaks down mid-cycle, a phone call from a distressed friend and then we have to cope with the bigger things in life, death of a loved one, loss of a pet, dissolution of a relationship.
There are times we stand feeling battled, weary and afraid.
These times are the times to turn our attention to the small things. The things that are almost always there, that we often pay no attention to. The flowering weed which has made it's way up through the crack in the pavement, the simple fresh food on our plates, the smile we received from the shop assistant while picking up the milk, the hand held out to you by a complete stranger as you were negotiating a difficult path and yes, the bird that sings.
In order to appreciate life when it all seems overwhelming, focus on the little things. Focus on the awe we can find in the everyday nature or in our everyday surroundings.
Stop and look up to the sky. Notice the flower. Hear the bird sing. Smell the scent from the tree. Notice the taste of the fresh peach. Feel the grass on your feet. Notice the roof above your head. Feel the warmth of the sun on your skin. Notice the wind blowing your hair.
Pay attention to the small things in your life. Feed your mind with the things that invoke a sense of joy, appreciate, wonder or gratitude.
These are in fact the things that get you through.