This post is a little different because it's about having a good life. BUT (and this is important) I do think this post ties in very well because Kitchen Witchery is all about creating a good life through simple means. To me, Kitchen Witchery has always been about how to have the best life possible. I really think good health begins with good food and enough sleep. If you don't believe me just stay up all night then go to work the next day and eat nothing but junk food from the vending machine. How do you feel when you finally drag yourself home? I rest my case.
This post was prompted by one simple thing- I went to bed earlier than I normally do and awoke feeling energized. I decided to try going to bed early every night for a week. Then I realized some other factors played into my good mood. I spent a day enjoying myself. I went to bed happy. So how does one achieve a happy life? Here's my list:
1. Balance. I need a time to work, a time to rest, a time to do, a time to think. Life can't be all work. It can't be all play and no purpose either. All the aspects of my life need to work together like cogs on a wheel and if one cog isn't turning, or only one cog turns, then the life wheel doesn't move.
2. I like the example above because it seems very Steampunk. I find joy in small, simple things. Life is made up of a series of small things. Failure to notice details usually leads to problems.
3. Sex is great. I like sex. I love sex. I think the best sex is the kind you have with a person you love when you are sharing your lives together. Sex with Will is awesome because we have a similar sense of humor, we want each other to be happy, and I love his intelligence. We spent the day in bed and while there was lots of sex, there was also conversation, sharing jokes, and pouring over art books. We connect on many levels. I think sex is just as vital as food, sleep, and having a secure place to call home. The higher the quality of sex, the more enriched my life.
4. Have a purpose. I really hate to do meaningless work. I once had a job where the management couldn't find their asses with both hands and a map, so I often did a lot of work for nothing. Say I organized all the files then a week later the files were tossed out because the company decided to eliminate that department. I would be told not to be mad because I got paid whether I did the work or not. But I'm one of those people who like to EARN my money. I don't want to do nothing, I want to have a purpose, to solve problems, and to help people. I need to be useful. Being told repeatedly that what I do doesn't matter makes me feel like I don't matter either. What I do doesn't have to matter to the world, but it does have to matter to me. It's like this autumn series of posts. The world doesn't care about my blog but I do and I want it to be interesting.
5. Plan ahead. For some reason, people seem to think it's boring and tedious to do prep work. Let me tell you this- people who lay out their clothes before bed are rarely late for work. People who are on time don't get in trouble with their bosses. People who stay out of trouble have less stress. People who have less stress are better able to deal with life. I plan as much as I can. I pack lunches on the weekend because it is far easier, and healthier and cheaper, to grab a sandwich from my fridge than to sit in the drive-thru on my lunch break. I make coffee before bed. I fill up dog food bowls so I can easily feed the dogs when I take them to the pen. You might be thinking, I don't have time to do all this crap before bed. Well how much time will you have the morning? You gonna get up earlier? Are you awake enough to remember all this stuff?
6. You need structure. I don't care if you think routine is boring, you need to know you have food to eat and a place to sleep and a way to pay bills. Going to work every day might be boring, but a steady paycheck means not worrying about the electricity being turned off. The less you worry, the more you can focus on what brings you joy. Which leads to #7-
7. Have a hobby or a past-time. There should be some activity you do just because you like to do it. This could be reading, painting, hiking, a long bath once a week, socializing with friends, or watching a favorite t.v. show. Maybe you like to make things really special. Maybe you tape your favorite show, take a long shower, put on your favorite pj's, grab a glass of wine, and then watch the recording alone after everyone else has gone to bed. The point is to fully involve yourself in being happy. Your hobby should make you feel better.
8. You need challenges. This is how you learn and grow. The world is constantly changing. You can't stop learning after a certain age. You must learn to change with the world. Don't avoid your problems, they will pile up and become overwhelming. Face issues as they arise, do the best you can, and move on.
9. Don't dwell in the past. It's over. Stop worrying/wishing about what could have been. Don't stress about the future either. While you can influence some outcomes, nobody can control every thing all the time.
10. If you don't like your life, go look in the mirror. The person who can change it will be staring back at you.
11. Live for you. You can't please everybody. You get one life. Don't waste it.