40 Of The Greatest Everyday Things That Give You The Most Joy

Jeffrey Smith
Jeffrey Smith

It was 8pm when I plugged in the lights for the first time. It’s been a difficult year and Christmas never seemed like something to look forward to. I spent 20 minutes untangling the lights, and, finally armed with sparkle, I plugged them in and called for my niece. My cousin was baking cookies, her husband going through Spotify setting up the Christmas music, and before I knew it, I was tangled up in the simple act of celebrating.

Recent losses have taught me that most of the greatest pleasures are simple. We have the bad habit of letting everyday things get the best of us, but sometimes the simple pleasures prevail.

In the spirit of the season, a list of special things, among the other ones you’ll be making this season:

  1. “I like you.”
  2. When you hear the crack of the ball hitting the bat.
  3. Long cab rides at the break of dawn.
  4. Meeting someone you simply cannot not smile at.
  5. A sting of chemistry the moment you meet someone.
  6. The first kiss.
  7. Prayer.
  8. The moment you finally say it loud, breathe it out, and let something go.
  9. The second sip of coffee.
  10. Hand-written letters.
  11. Sunday morning.
  12. Right after doing something extremely frightening.
  13. Day 3 of a beach vacation, when the sun has finally burned home off of you.
  14. Hearing something about yourself and naturally shrugging it off.
  15. When you surprise yourself with something great, but no one realizes it but you.
  16. When they look at you when you are talking to someone else.
  17. A full bank account.
  18. A good hair day.
  19. When you realize at the counter that your item is on sale.
  20. A great last line in a body of work.
  21. When Grandma slips you a 50.
  22. “We would like to invite you to join our team.”
  23. When the impossible happens and you realize the universe is good at its core, restoring your faith.
  24. Fresh sheets.
  25. Walking in the city late at night when it is snowing and it’s so quiet you can hear your footsteps.
  26. Saturday brunch with friends. Sunday dinner with family.
  27. Just before you begin to go down the mountain.
  28. A drizzle in the middle of the perfect run.
  29. The ocean water smacking your knees.
  30. The feeling right after you finish check-in, bags, and security and there are only gates ahead.
  31. Chinese takeout in pajamas with people who are visiting town.
  32. Wearing your leather jacket for the first time.
  33. 3-hour lunches.
  34. Going into the subway and finding your train waiting for you on the platform.
  35. The feeling of a new book.
  36. Finding that song on the radio.
  37. When you walk into a room with a pleasant surprise.
  38. Drinks over a red sunset.
  39. When your food is coming and you start adjusting things on the table while everyone keeps talking.
  40. Finding the perfect word. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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