Today began like most; in a mad dash to get ready for work, ran some errands on the way, and then on to the 9-to-5er. I was checking my emails, as is part of my early morning routine, when I came across a message from someone who is very dear to me. We don’t often exchange emails, so it was a pleasant surprise to see the message in my inbox. What was so remarkable, though, is the fact that the email contained a link to a podcast, and a website – both of which had a profound influence on my for-the-moment state-of-mind. The first thing that I thought, after listening to the podcast and checking out the website, was how we need to take the time to appreciate how even simple things, like an email with a shared link, can make a remarkable impact on our daily lives. Let me explain…
The website that was shared with me was The Happiness Project, a blog by NY Times and international bestselling author Gretchen Rubin. In case you’ve been living in the same bubble as I have apparently been inhabiting, The Happiness Project book, which chronicles Ms. Rubin’s yearlong quest “test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific studies, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier” has been on the bestseller list for more than a year, taking the country by storm. Since I was just introduced to the blog this morning, I haven’t read the book, of course, but I’m looking forward to reading it. In the meantime, I’ve found a lot of inspiration from the blog. Since beginning my own blog for the purpose of accomplishing what seems like a lifelong goal of writing, I found in The Happiness Project blog validation, if you will, that I’m not completely off-my-rocker for wanting to pursue something that I am passionate about and something that makes me happy.
The podcast link was another bonus. Dean Dwyer is an inspirational blogger and host of The Lifestyle Hacking Show podcasts, in which he interviews people who have achieved success in accomplishing goals. It had been suggested to me to listen to podcasts before, and I hadn’t taken the time to pursue them, but this morning, because of that special email, I listened to Mr. Dwyer’s interview of Gretchen Rubin, and the discussion of how she came to realize that her pursuit of a career in law was not her true passion and about how she committed to following her true path as a writer. What resonated even more with me though was the discussion of committing yourself to something that you are truly passionate about, whatever the case may be, and taking the time to realize what really makes you happy. For instance, what do you do when you have some free time? If it’s something that you keep coming back to, it might be that it’s a passion that you should commit to pursue.
It’s important to recognize that simple things can make life remarkable. In my case, the simple thing was an email message, but it served to reinforce my commitment to the challenge that I gave myself before my fiftieth birthday. In your case, it might be as subtle as a fleeting thought that flashes through your mind, reminding you of something that you love to do or something that makes you happy. Pay attention to the details and the clues that life gives you. And, when you get the chance, pass along some inspiration. You never know what a difference you can make for someone, on an otherwise ordinary day.
As always, a quote: