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Four Behaviours That Help Me Enjoy The Here and Now

I often find myself looking ahead to the next stage in life as if life will be so much greener once I’ve achieved the next goal. The goal might be work-related – “once we finish this task or project, things will run smoother.” Or the goal could be personal – “once the car loan is paid…once the kids are done University…once we turn this corner…”

Yet, I am reminded of the sage advice: “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.”

So how best can we enjoy the daily journey and not put off our happiness until tomorrow? I turn to four practices that help me accomplish this:

  1. Live in the present. I think we can start by reminding ourselves to enjoy life as it is, right now. Look to celebrate and savour the little things every day, like that first cup of morning coffee. Don’t rush your day and your thoughts to the point that you fail to notice the pleasure you derive from the moment at hand.
  2. Break goals down into smaller increments. While we can set goals and experience the satisfaction in achieving those goals, the fulfilment really comes from the process of accomplishing the end result one step at a time. It helps me to reflect on how much has already been realised in achieving the big goal by observing several stages along the way.
  3. Mark your calendar. I highlight any day on my calendar that I have something special to look forward to. When I look at my upcoming week, I am always pleasantly surprised to see how many days I have highlighted that promise to add a delightful element to my schedule.
  4. Get outdoors every day. There is something about connecting with the natural world around us that is truly uplifting. Even on the worst weather days, getting outside to just walk around the block for 15 minutes can raise my spirits and help me find the joy in the moment.