What are the things that bring you joy? What are the things that you do in a normal day that don’t bring you joy?
For me, the things that bring me joy are the things I would choose to do on vacation – playing games, hanging out, and making a puzzle. Maybe add in there sipping a cup of decaf coffee while writing a blog post, and I am one satisfied woman!
As for the things that I do in a normal day that do not bring me joy: dishes, meal prep, laundry, being overly busy, and cleaning our home. And at least half of these, are things that I can’t change in a way – dishes, laundry, and cleaning always have to be done.
But what I’m finding as I get older is that I want to do all those things that I enjoy and simplify what I don’t want to do. It sounds so cheesy and so ridiculous. Duh, right? I feel like so often the most simple answers in life are sometimes the hardest to apply. Although, here are a few ways I simplify them all:
Meal Prep – make your meals simple. We have a 3 year old and as much as I likes of my more “intricate” recipes for taste purposes, Mazy does not, nor would I expect her too. Sometimes my favorite meals are spaghetti, homemade pizzas on the grill (make dough in breakmaker), mac n’ cheese (indeed we eat it too), and tacos/crunchwrap supremes. My days with Maze are too valuable to spend hours and hours in the kitchen. Nor would she allow me to do so. It’s a season of life and I’m okay with it! Keep it simple.
Dishes – again, make your meals simple. When we moved into our new-to-us home a year and a half ago, it was the first time we had a home that had a dishwasher. Okay, not going to lie, it’s a luxury and it sure was a game changer for me though! But if a meal takes less dishes and less cleanup, in my book it’s time saved and I can enjoy doing the other things I love.
Laundry – I have broken the most token rule with laundry. I do not separate my clothes by temp of water or color. Shame on me, I know, but it has been the biggest time saver for me and I’m still loving that choice today! We only have 3 people in our family so it is feasible, where I understand if you have a much larger family, there is no need for you to do this, but for us, this has been a huge time saver!
Cleaning – I used to be borderline obsessed about organization and cleaning. I even dedicated a whole blog to that idea when I started my Organizing Life With Less blog. Well, those days are long gone folks because I sure couldn’t live up to that lifestyle with my health and cutie pie 3 year old! So what’s my routine now? I don’t clean every week. My goal is to vacuum and clean our bathroom weekly, but sometimes the bathroom gets a bit delayed. I dust every 2-3 weeks, and it’s just perfect. Again, I’d much rather spend my days again, doing the things I love!
Busyness – this one, well, there is no simple way around it, except to just not be so busy! But I think often times we look at our schedules and wonder, how could I ever cut anything out? I preach this to myself – every “yes” I say, I say “no” to something else. What I mean is that the busier I am, the less time I have to do the things I love and be around those I love. People often use the word balance; I just call it not saying “yes” to the things that aren’t a good fit for our family at the time.
I have to chuckle a bit that I even write a post about these things, but these are the very things that I think many of us do not like to do and would much rather be doing something else. So I am truly wondering, what do you really enjoy doing in life? And what are those things you do that don’t bring you joy?
Some things we can’t escape, so how do we make the most of them? How do we find joy in each day? And make the things that we don’t enjoy, more manageable?
Side Note: The picture at the top of this post is of a 1,000 piece puzzle that I just love. I had made it while recovering from open heart surgery and we made it again while on vacation with my family this past summer. There is something about the challenge that I just love! Find those things that you just love to do and just simply do them.