1. When I get to sleep under my own blanket after a long day, hugging my own pillow so close with all lights turned off, all of my worries and problems seem to melt away in its familiar comfortableness.
Well, yes, it’s just so comforting (unless when I’m in my period, period) that I would feel blissfully content, grateful for being able to sleep in my own bed to snuggle inside the bed cover and to occasionally look up at the messy arrangement of my glow-in-the-dark stars, pasted on my ceiling above.
2. When I lay down on the floor on Saturday morning.
I’d always feel nostalgic because that’s what I usually did as a kid back then, laying down and playing silly by rolling around (literally) on the floor when no one was watching. The rolling-on-the-floor habit thankfully doesn’t grow up with me; but I still occasionally lay down on the floor because it just feels awesome that way when your back touches a hard surface, with window blinds open to let the bright sunlight in. The TV’s off so there’s only silence – the kind of comfortable silence that would surround you and envelope you in your own world – and of course, content, for having a brief solo time. Maybe that’s my own kind of meditation?
3. When I walk in the midst of one-of-a-kind sublime nature landscape, the kind that makes you simply stop in your track to appreciate the glory of it all.
Seongsan Ilchulbong, Jeju, South Korea. I got to visit this beautiful place in April this year, and I’ll dedicate a full-length post for it soon)
There’s this feeling of serene happiness inside of me when I see a beautiful nature scenery – who doesn’t enjoy a good nature scenery anyway? Especially nature has its own charming way to get you humble and wonder and make you feel peaceful at the same time. I admit I’m not as fit as those avid hikers out there, but I do love hiking or trekking when I get the chance (I’d just conquer the track in my own leisure pace, alright). I’d call it a privilege if I could just enjoy such a scenic view like the one in the picture above; not merely through the camera lens, but literally see it as a real object with my own eyes. In my admiration, I’ll usually let my thoughts travel and fly to whatever direction they take off to, and then the world will recede with just me and the nature charm in front of me.
4. When I get to spend time with mom, like when we watch Korean dramas together. Watching Korean dramas is not just a mere hobby or fangirling; it has a deeper meaning for us. My mom and I would sit side by side; we bond, we laugh, we feel bitter and cry together… we become closer. Enough said.
5. When I have all day long to read a book. Entering a different world just by opening a page from a single book feels like magic made real.
6. Every time I bake. From the smell of a baked good that usually spreads around the room, to the homemade taste – no matter how amateur or messy it might look like in the end. Baking something and seeing it out of the oven myself are things that have become my source of happiness and addictive distraction. Just waiting and watching for my sweets treats to bake is a contentment in itself.
Well… each of us may label the state of feeling content differently; so naturally we also use a different approach to define what it actually means for us, and how to make it present in our lives. Some may feel content by fulfilling dreams and achievements, some may attain it by sharing happiness with others. Some may even find it in a simplified lifestyle.
I myself happen to believe that one way (out of many) to feel content with life is by becoming appreciative towards what we currently have. A gesture of gratefulness towards precious, present moments that won’t come twice your way, treasuring our moments of togetherness with friends and family, all the people we love, relishing experiences and being grateful for what we are able to see, to feel, to listen…
Quite surprisingly, the things that come up immediately in my mind are those of everyday moments. They may not seem much but for me, they shine in their own ordinariness, remarkable because the comfort they often bring to my heart. I realise they are subsequently so easy to forget. They could be a passing moment, ones that can possibly get drowned just like that in the midst of our hectic life, left unappreciated.
Well, you see, standing face to face with life is not a small feat and sometimes, the lemony taste it gives you is not so easy to deal with. The room in our heart to appreciate the littlest things in life may grow smaller as our mind tends to get preoccupied with other kinds of problems, more intense matters that make us simply… exhausted. Not entirely our fault anyway, since we only have one brain, one mind, and one heart in our body; their processing capacity cannot simultaneously work on multiple things at the same time –
Hence, we sometimes forget.
Still, I think it’s important to stop for a while, no matter what life phase you’re currently in right now, to write down even the littlest, most ordinary things that make your life precious.
Just so you can recollect to remember.
So how do you define contentment, yourself? Can you think of one thing that makes you feel content and meaningful?