What Makes You Stop in Your Tracks?

Momservation: Happiness is a child or husband who turned their dirty socks right-side-out before putting them in the hamper.

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cute-puppies-attackWhat makes you happy?

I’m talking subconsciously humming, smiling at strangers, and butt dancing in your seat happy.

Feeling like you could change the world by harnessing the positive energy you’re exuding happy.

The warm glow of contentment tickling your stomach like you’ve just swallowed a Hawaiian sunset happy.

The pure joy and optimism of a dozen puppies wiggling at your ankles happy.

I hope this question is easy to answer for you. I hope your list is long. I hope the feeling of organic happiness isn’t a distant memory for you.

That would make me sad.

The reason I ask this is because it pisses me off sometimes that as a kid I wasted so much time wanting to grow up and be an adult.

And you know what? A lot of times being an adult sucks.

The responsibility. The anxiety. The reality. The pressure. The bills. The stress.

As a kid it took so little to be kitten kisses happy.

Daddy coming home. Mommy reading a story. A push pop. Finding a penny for the gumball machine. A blank piece of paper and a new box of crayons. A hug from your teacher.

I saw this little boy the other day. He was cradling a Slurpee, walking behind his mother, totally focused on the delicious, frozen, liquid sunshine coming through his straw. When he finally came up for air he stopped in his tracks and announced, “I’m so happy.”

Image courtesy of thethinkingblonde.com

Image courtesy of thethinkingblonde.com

Adults need to do more of that. Stop in our hectic lives and recognize those moments— those sweet spots that make us truly happy. And then announce it to the world. Or at least to ourselves.

Maybe if we shifted our focus to recognizing simple joys in life that lift us up like a brand new balloon tied to a wrist we wouldn’t feel so buried by the burden of being an adult.

I actually keep a list in my desk drawer of things that make me happy. The sound of a baby giggling. The smell of Gardenias. A good book. Raw brownie batter. I like reminding myself to enjoy the simple pleasures in life when the weight of the world threatens to crush my spirit. Nothing gives you the strength to lift it and throw it aside like counting life’s blessings.

So the next time I walk by someone drinking a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte or your teenager decided to give you a hug in public, I hope I’m there when you stop in your tracks to say: “I’m so happy right now.”

And don’t walk too close behind me if you see me in the grocery store with a warm loaf of bread. One sneak taste-test of that and I’m stopping in my tracks to do my happy dance.


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