If you’ve seen Zombieland you’ll get the title reference, if you haven’t; Zombieland is a gory comedy zombie flick that follows a small group of apocalypse survivors trying to find a life worth living. The main character has a list of ‘rules for surviving Zombieland’, and rule #32 is: Enjoy the little things. (Like finding a Twinkie)
While we don’t have the undead trying to eat us here in modern day Humanland, we should enjoy the little things nonetheless. I’ve noticed how it changed the way I look at things that would have otherwise passed unnoticed or how it turns situations with negative associations around to become more positive.
Being able to enjoy the little things around you are like little boosts of positive energy, which are free for you to harvest and reap its benefits. It’s not always easy to see them, or to really focus and reflect on what you see. To the untrained senses (for a lack of a cooler word) a lot of these things go by unnoticed, or you focus too much on the ‘negative’ aspects of a situation. So the first step is to look around more and try and find the little things that put a smile on your face.
A good tool to learn how to enjoy the little things is to be more patient. If you can train yourself to become more patient and to cope with situations that you have negative associations with, it’ll be easier to see and focus on the enjoyable things around you.
Like I said it’s a great way to turn certain ‘negative’ situations around. Waiting for a traffic light can be a bore, but did you notice the dog excitedly wagging its tail and looking up at its owner in anticipation of the green light? It puts a smile on my face, and I’ve trained myself to focus more on those things than the other negative aspects of a situation. Now it’s the positive that attracts my attention automatically, and the negative parts go by unnoticed.
Calvin from the Calvin and Hobbes comics did something similar, he had a list of little things he enjoyed in life. From opening a new ketchup bottle to petting a sweet dog, it’s what made him happy. If a 6 year old boy in a comic book can do it, so can you 😉
Patience is a virtue. Sieve out negative associations, focus on the good ones and start enjoying the little things.