I started the day by enjoying my typical morning routine of leisurely reading the blogs. While I have not yet read The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, I have been following her blog off and on for the past several months. Today's post was a vlog entry in which she focused on the topic of fun: how we all need to add fun to our lives; it is necessary - even vital - to the pursuit of happiness. She also pointed out a life-lesson that she has learned along the way: someone else's idea of fun may NOT be fun for me. It is important to discover what fun means to each of us individually - and then be sure to include time in our schedules to enjoy those activities.
But what if I don't know what is "fun" for me? What if I have lost sight of that important ingredient in life - focusing all my time and energy on serious responsibilities and duties and constantly putting the "frivolous" projects on hold?
Well, Gretchen advises reflecting back on my childhood. What did I enjoy doing when I was 10 or 11 years old? What I enjoyed doing as a child are likely the same things that would bring me joy today. But even with that great suggestion, I could not really remember what fun I had at that age (I have often thought that I ceased being a child when I was eight). In looking at this photograph of Christmas morning 1969, it appears as though I enjoyed playing Barbies. Not so...I thought that was what ten-year-old girls were supposed to like doing, so I tried very hard to fit in.
She also suggested looking at how I currently fill my free time (yes, we all have free time, we may just choose to deceive ourselves). Truth be told, I spend most of my free time surfing the internet: blogs to discover new books to read; teacher sites to discover new ways to bring literature to life; youtube to watch photography tutorials.
I always remember liking school (I guess I really am a true nerd) and when I was not in school, I liked playing school: lining up all my stuffed animals and teaching them math lessons on the chalk board. I never enjoyed the pressure of taking tests, but I always loved the educational process (research papers were my absolute favorite assignment --- again, I did not like worrying about the grade, but I loved digging deep into a subject and writing my results). And how do I use the internet? To educate myself!
This picture shows me on Christmas evening - after all the packages have been opened and the festivities have died down. What did I choose to do for fun? READ. (and if you look closely at the previous photo you will see about 3 or 4 books that Santa gave me that year).
So, I am really not quite sure that I have resolved this issue of finding fun in my life - but I am well on my way. And what a wonderful blessing to discover that my vocation is what truly brings me happiness.
Thank you Gretchen, for helping me to focus on me today.
For those of you who might be interested in her recent video ---- ENJOY!!