Two weeks ago, I wrote about how the majority of our lives are spent in the in-between where life feels ordinary and mundane. My petition is that these moments should be celebrated. Here at Flourish, we don’t want to just share big ideas but rather bring them down to real life for you. We always want to be asking the questions, “So what does that actually look like?” “What does that mean for me?” We can talk about big concepts all day but, it’s fruitless if we don't bridge those concepts into our actual lives. As a follow-up to my post The In-Between, what would it mean to really celebrate the ordinary, to embrace the mundane moments in our lives? Today, I’m sharing 3 simple ways to find joy in the mundane:
1. Look at what’s around
We spend a lot of time dwelling on our past, worrying about our future, and looking at what everyone else is doing. Our eyes seem focused everywhere else instead of our lives right now. Ask yourself the question, “Who are the people, places, and commitments in my life right now and how can I be more engaged in them?” Here’s how this question influences areas in my own life:
Work- Sometimes I feel stuck in a rut at work, so I find new skills and concepts I can learn in my profession. When there’s down time at work, I work on these projects to grow myself and improve in my job.
Relationships- Instead of spending all my time making new friends (because I love doing this!), I hone in on a few friends already in my circle and pursue them. I send a couple texts to check in, make a coffee date or two, or write someone snail mail (everyone needs a pen pal).
Neighbors- To brighten up our street, I recently bought bright orange mums (my new favorite flower) and placed them on my neighbors’ porches. There is an elderly woman that lives across the street and instead of just laying the mum on the porch, I took the time to knock on her door to check in on her and chat about the day.
My City- For those of us who love to travel, we sometimes forget to discover the actual city we live in. So, I make a list of restaurants and places I wanted to visit in Kansas City and cross them off the list as we try them. It’s fun!
2. Do It Together
Is it just me or do “days off” not actually feel like days off anymore? #chores #adulthood. I used to try to cram all of our chores into one day, but I burned out pretty quickly. Matt had the revolutionary idea of doing chores together (never occurred to me). Since then, grocery shopping has turned into one of our favorite times together. Doing this has made grocery shopping less burdensome, more enjoyable, and adds quality time to an ordinary task.
3. Switch It Up
You know those people that can eat the same thing every day? Not me. I love routine, but I still need variety. One way that I enjoy a mundane part of life like cooking dinner is trying new recipes. For planning purposes, Matt and I keep the base of our diet the same with a few foundational meals to turn to every week. But when I get bored with dinner, I find a new recipe that lets me experiment with different ingredients that I’ve never tried. This provides just the new flavor and variety I need to make meals exciting again.
When we take the time to slow down, we share in the richness that the ordinary brings to our lives. Look around, do it together, and switch it up— you might find that beauty and life are already around you. And if you weren't able to catch the In-Between a couple weeks ago, you can read it here!