1.perfect happiness; great joy.
Bliss. It’s a word used a lot – mainly in conjunction with people trying to find theirs and keep it! It’s not a word I use a lot, but it does have a great definition – “great joy.” I love the concept of joy as compared to happiness (because, the first definition, “perfect happiness,” sounds unattainable…) and after listening to Steph Gaudreau’s interview with Dr. Alessandra Wall, I was thinking about the word bliss more.
So…bliss… Do we need to go on a retreat in Bali or change our lifestyle in order to find it?
…I don’t think so. You see, Thursday I was sick. In fact, I’ve been fighting something for about a week, and today after my early morning clients I finally caved in, sniffling and sneezing and feeling pretty terrible, and canceled my clients for the rest of the day. I shifted my Friday clients around so today I’m not working but am resting at home. Not the best scenario. But you know what?
There are moments of bliss even in this situation today. As I sat at home, I was grateful for a job that I loved – I was actually really disappointed to not check in with people and see them Thursday (and today)! I was also grateful for the chance to watch Fuller House (even though after a few episodes it’s already been too much TV – being sick at home actually isn’t that fun).
These are small examples, but I was also able to have my life put into perspective this last weekend, on our first Weekend HangOut with an incredible group of young adult cancer survivors and supporters at Camp Kindle. There I was, at a camp with a group of people who have undergone some deep hardships at young ages – cancer (first and foremost), but it’s never just cancer. There are broken relationships, comas, family struggles, physical side effects and hurt hearts – all things I have not had to experience first-hand. Bliss? It’s hard to find, even harder to keep.
Mikey summed up the weekend quite well when he said how impressed he was that everyone came and participated, holding not good OR bad in their lives in that weekend, but good AND bad together. And man, how true is that… Life is never just one thing. BUT we can reframe, “restory” our lives and learn to hold both and look at life differently.
So all of a sudden, my life doesn’t seem so bad and this cold sure isn’t the end of the world. I’m not talking about focusing only on the “good;” we talk a lot about the “tyranny of positivity…” Hint: “just being positive” doesn’t work, statistically and anecdotally! We really encourage people to experience all their emotions fully – stuffing it down and just being positive doesn’t help in the long run. So how do we hold both the good and the bad together when life is more bad than good?
Well, we can take a page from Lindsay and celebrate the small victories! You should read her post – her advice really says it all, and she shares four great action steps you can take to celebrate the small things. Noticing the small things in life and pausing to celebrate them takes just that – a moment to pause, to stop, to acknowledge. When is the last time you stopped and looked for the little things, wrote them down or shared them with others? It takes concentrated effort but can yield real life changes.
Just some food for thought on this Friday… I hope you guys can take a moment to acknowledge the good – the bliss – while you hold the bad simultaneously. Have a great weekend, friends.
Live well & be well,