One of the homework assignments I offer my coaching circle participants is to make a list of “dependable joys” – activities they can count on to bring them pleasure and/or serenity. Things like a bubble bath, hot cocoa, or writing a handwritten letter. I actually ask them to list 50 – yes, you read that right – 50 such joys. They usually groan and ask, “How can I get to 50?” And I reply, “Maybe you can’t – but give it a week and see what happens.” And invariably, the following week, the women come into the coaching circle beaming and eager to share a few items from their lists. Some overachievers even take pride in exceeding 50!
Then, as the women are sharing their lists, I ask the following questions:
- How was it to write this list?
- How many of the items on this list require more than $10?
- What’s possible for you now that you have a list like this close by?
Here’s what making a list of dependable joys can do for you:
- It can make you feel better just by writing it. It puts attention on the good, the positive and the nourishing things in our lives.
- It creates a sense of abundance in a world where we are so often triggered into a sense of scarcity.
- It reminds us that we can take care of ourselves. We have dependable ways to soothe and comfort ourselves.
And, this is a great activity to engage your family in as well. For instance:
- Ask every member of your family to list her/his top 5 dependable joys and post on the refrigerator.
- When your child is having a bad day, remind them of their list and see if there is one dependable joy they can act on.
- Invite your family to create a list of the top 5 dependable joys for the entire family. For example, making breakfast together, carving pumpkins or snuggling under one blanket as during movie night.
So, dear reader, tell me
- What are a few of your dependable joys?
- What one dependable joy can you give yourself this week?
Take care of your special self.