50 Simple Pleasures to Brighten Your Day


“The art of being happy lies in the power of extracting happiness from common things.”

Henry Ward Beecher

It is important to count your blessings every now and then, especially the simple pleasures that make life worth living.

By making lists of the things you enjoy and appreciate, you are reminding yourself that life is infinitely awesome. I challenge you to take 5 minutes right now and write down as many simple pleasures as you can remember.

This is an exercise that is especially useful when you are down or depressed and need that extra boost. It’s difficult to physically stay sad when you’re thinking about so many positively-energized experiences and memories.

Once you’re done with your list, compare it to some of the ones I’ve gathered (about 50% of these are mine, the other 50% are ones I’ve gathered from others):

    1. Putting on pajamas right after they come out of the dryer

    2. Switching to the cool side of the pillow in the middle of the night

    3. Waking up in the middle of the night with dry mouth and getting a cold beverage from the fridge (preferably orange juice)

    4. Completing a long ass paper assignment

    5. Waking and baking and then deciding to lay in bed for another 4 hours

    6. The feeling of grass on bare feet

    7. Diving into a cool-temperature pool after a hot day at the beach

    8. Finding money in one of your old pant’s pockets

    9. Milk and cookies

    10. Taking a piss after six beers

    11. Washing your hands, after counting and rolling hundreds of dollars in change

    12. Finally getting to the toilet after a long and excruciating wait

    13. That little flutter you get the first time that special someone kisses you

    14. A good back massage

    15. Cooking a monster of a meal and enjoying the fruit of your labor

    16. Receiving a letter from an old loved one

    17. Freshly baked bread

    18. Visiting a foreign country and absolutely falling in love with its culture

    19. Taking a nap in the sun

    20. Being lazy for a whole Sunday

    21. Sore muscles after a long and productive workout

    22. Getting away with the consequences after making a really stupid mistake

    23. Smell of BBQ on a nice summer day

    24. Minty breathe right after you brush your teeth

    25. Stargazing on a clear night sky

    26. Finally seeing your all-time favorite band live

    27. Morning thunder

    28. An unexpected compliment

    29. Smoking a cigarette while driving with the windows down and music blasting (good weather is a must too)

    30. Smell of a good bacon, egg, toast breakfast in the morning (why not some pancakes too)

    31. Hot cocoa with marshmallows after playing in the snow

    32. Cool sand in between your toes on a sunny day at the beach

    33. Smell of good food cooking in the other room

    34. Waiting all night and finally getting to dance with that special girl/guy

    35. Rollercoasters

    36. Looking back on a piece of art or writing that you did a long time ago and liking it better than you remember

    37. Getting a new puppy, kitten or other cool pet

    38. Finding new things to ponder about

    39. First cup of coffee in the morning

    40. Long, hot, sweaty sex

    41. Driving your brand new car

    42. Coming back home after a long overdue vacation

    43. Finishing a really good book

    44. Discovering a new music artist that simply blows you away

    45. The calm before the storm

    46. Being in an airplane when it takes off

    47. Completing an hour long meditation

    48. Winning a board game

    49. Getting a hole-in-one in miniature golf (or golf in general is pretty sweet)

    50. Finding the good in someone

Of course, at the end of the day, you shouldn’t just list these simple pleasures; instead, you should try to engage in them as much as possible – because these are the little things that really make life enjoyable.

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