Something to think about in your every day, to make life just a little more special.
As someone whose job is to be up-to-date with social media, it’s no surprise that I spend many hours per week scrolling through the depths of Instagram and Tik Tok, where I view endless photos and 60-or-less second videos.
Tik Tok is an interesting platform because the content varies drastically from silly fever-dream like videos to nothing short of cinematic masterpieces. I see a lot of stuff, but one video that stuck with me happened to be a quote that I’d never heard before, and it stood out so much in my mind that I had to write a post about it:
“The true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life”– William Morris
This concept is crucial now more than ever in a society where on-demand stimulation is reaching a peak. We’re able to fill any sort of gap in time with instant gratification from our phone or other devices. We also often have minds that won’t shut up and run a mile a minute rather than quieting down and focusing solely on whatever task (or free block of time) is at hand.
We’ve stopped learning to be intentional with everything we do and instead have become a society of multitaskers which, hate to break it to you, is never actually as productive as we think. When we multitask, our brains aren’t actually able to give our full attention to one singular thing, so we end up doing multiple things poorly rather than doing one thing well.
Likewise, when we fail to live in the present and take an interest in our individual actions and perceptions, it’s easy to forget about many of the joyful little moments life has to offer. In the video, it shows someone taking time to make their coffee and turning their use of a french press into a sort of methodical, mindful event. How many actions such as the simple crafting of a drink or meal do we now switch into autopilot for?
Using myself as an example, I make the same breakfast every day: avocado toast and scrambled eggs. I’ve posted about it many times because it’s just such a favorite of mine, so if you’ve seen my Instagram this shouldn’t be a surprise. However, I’m so used to making the same breakfast that I often fill the gaps of waiting for eggs to cook or waiting for my bagel to toast with opening Snapchat, browsing through Twitter, or letting my mind run wild regarding the day ahead of me.
Being genuinely interested in the details of life will help you make a conscious effort to actually enjoy the view out of your window while sipping your coffee or tea rather, it’ll cause you to pay more attention to the beautiful little details like the way sunlight casts a golden glow on everything in the afternoon. It’ll also give your mind a chance to actually process things because you’re not filling it with random banter and background noise.
As a challenge this week, try to pick an activity you usually switch into autopilot for and make an effort to actually focus on the task at hand. Find interest in it, whether it be the meditative state cleaning your living space can put you in, or noticing the vibrant colors of plants as you water them.
And kudos to Tik Tok user @amexinamer for bringing this quote to my awareness in just a simply crafted, 15-second video.