Just over a year ago I began challenging myself to find three good things to celebrate at the end of each day. Inspired by an email which my Dad shared with me, I thought I would give it a go. The challenge was simply, at the end of each day, look back over your day and find three good things which made you happy; three good things that made your day better; three good things that saved your day from going in the toilet. The challenge was to find #3goodthings each day for 30 days and at the end of those 30 days you would feel more positive and happier about your life. But how does finding #3goodthings in each day change your outlook on life? Well, I’ll tell you!
I was very much a “glass half empty” kind of person. In fact, if I get into a grumpy mood, I still can be! But I was so tired of being grumpy. I was tired of getting myself in a tizz about things that I couldn’t control. I was tired of having a short temper and lack of patience. I knew that while our family life was far from perfect, we were damn lucky to have what we did have. I knew people, friends, who had lost so much far too soon. Grumbling about a sleepless night, a temper tantrum, a leaky tap, lack of money was not only pointless, it was terrifically unfair! The sleepless nights are a phase, a temper tantrum ends at some point, a leaky tap can be fixed and although you can’t magic up a money tree, there are ways to save and spend within your means. The friends of mine who had lost loved ones far too soon would never get their loved ones back. My life was not so bad after all.
The challenge was to find #3goodthings about each day. I look it a step or two further, as I do with most things. I took a bit of quiet time at the end of each day, thought back on the day and found (and sometimes had to look REALLY hard) three good things that were worth celebrating. Then I would find a photo (or sometimes 3!) from the day, one that summed up the day or just happened to be a really great picture. I used photo editing apps to put text onto the photo and would share my #3goodthings on the photo itself. I would then share the photo with Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Not for any special reason other than I share far too much of our life anyway so why not share this. I also thought that me sharing my #3goodthings might help others to celebrate the good in their life too. And eventually, after starting my #3goodthings journey on 25 January, 2014, I started Embrace Happy in April of 2014. I realised that celebrating #3goodthings about my day wasn’t enough. I needed to help other people to see the value in finding the good. I found my tag line: Not every day is good but there is good in every day! I started Happy Mail. And slowly but surely, others started noticing and participating and finding their own good. My outlook on life had changed dramatically. I started to be more grateful, I slowed down, I lost my temper less, my patience level grew, I began to truly appreciate the people in my life and show them how much they meant to me. Starting with a simple challenge to find #3goodthings in each day, changed my outlook on life. And it can do the same for you!
Start TODAY! At some point in the day (I generally take some time in the evening, after the children have gone to bed), think about your day. What’s been great? What’s been good? What or who helped you to smile? What lifted your mood? Where did you go? What helped you to turn a bad day into a not-so-bad day? Write them down! Do this in a journal or notebook or in the Embrace Happy Facebook Group. Do this with a photo and photo editing app. Share it on social media and use the hashtag #3goodthings or #embracehappy and tag me if you want me to know! Then every day (and I really mean every day) repeat the above steps. Keep doing this for at least 30 days. But let’s take it one step further, hey? I’ve got a proper challenge for you if you’re up for it!
Tomorrow (Wednesday 18 February, 2015) is the FIRST day of Lent. It doesn’t matter if you practise a religion or not, Lent is a brilliant opportunity to set a challenge for yourself. Many people choose to give something up: Chocolate, bread, social media (ack, twitch), drinking, smoking, bad language. Some people choose to GIVE something of themselves instead of giving something UP: volunteer, give clothes or belongings to charity, visit a friend or neighbour, bake cakes for school). How about if you turn the focus on yourself and challenge yourself to find #3goodthings every day and either record them for yourself or share them through social media? #3goodthings for 40 days. Simple yet it could (and in fact, I know it will) change your outlook on life. Join me! #embracehappy