Since January I have been taking part in 100 happy days. It is a project where you post a picture about something that makes you happy for 100 days. I was inspired to start after seeing happy days pictures pop up over Instagram and was particularly inspired by Domestikate‘s lovely photos. So I started in depths of January as way of capturing things I notice which make me happy or lift my mood.
Apparently over 70% of people who take part don’t finish (eek!) but on the days people post something improves their mindset. I’ve been thinking of ways to build a bit more gratitude-type thinking into everyday so this seemed a perfect experiment. You can follow my pics on Instagram and Flickr and you can sign up yourself here.
I’ve never taken part in project 52 or 365 projects on Flickr because they felt like a big commitment but posting one picture, everyday for 100 days, felt easier and I was motivated to join in. I thought everyone has the time to be happy. I also think there is something interesting in posting everyday – habit forming, repetition helps you develop creative practice of any type. The moments you will capture will be fleeting but it means you will have to stop and look. To notice the ordinary things in the world around you that make you happy and be present. I’m interested to see whether my pictures get better or if there are any patterns in what I capture.
41 days later – I’m really enjoying it. I like posting once a day, there have been a few days when I’ve remembered close to midnight but still posted. My rules have been to post something that genuinely puts a spring in my step and not to over-think it or worry about the artistic merits of the photo. It isn’t about massively trying to improve my photography. But just a way to be more mindful and present for 100 days. Over last few years I’ve become interested in gratitude and impacts on wellbeing. Grateful people on the whole are happier, less stressed, less depressed, more altruistic, and more happy with their health and wellbeing. I struggle with gratitude as a word because it feels like a negative and like something I should be feeling rather than something positive. I prefer Sophie’s interpretation of being thankful and have really enjoyed her weekly updates.
Anyway, this long preamble is a way of reintroducing reasons to be cheerful. These are the things this week which have put a smile on my face…
:: The Farmer’s Market at the Horniman. The Horniman is pretty much my favourite place in South East London these days. Saturday mornings are about buying veggies, bread, enjoying my favourite view across London and a quick chat with the pygmy goats. These are a new addition and such cute critters. And we all know how much I love a goat.
:: Blue skies-there have been some beautiful days when the sun finally made an appearance and the rain that seems to have been steadily falling forever has finally stopped. They are still few and far between but I’m hoping for more.
:: Hellebores – Spring is coming and my mum’s garden is full of different colours of spring flowers. I love hellebores big time.
:: Flow magazine – such a treat to read something so gentle, beautiful and inspiring.
:: Trip planning – the anticipation and planning is half the fun.
:: Reading on my Kindle.
:: Clean kitchen to cook in. I’m digging stirfrys of tofu and greens at the moment.
:: Friday night cocktails. Welcome to the weekend.
I started writing Reasons to be cheerful posts to remind myself of all the fun, good things I see, read and find out about every week.