- A working snowblower and a husband who isn't afraid to use it
- Great teachers who are able to challenge my beliefs - cognitive dissonance can be a powerful learning tool.
- The ladies at the coffee shop I sometimes visit on my way to work - thank you for the extra, extra whip cream today. It was much appreciated. :)
I was in line at the post office this week when I overheard a couple of thirty-something ladies ahead of me compare their Valentine's Day experiences. Let's just say they were complaining about what they thought was a lack of extravagence. They wanted more than flowers and cutsie gifts from the men in their lives. They expected to be dazzled and treated like royalty and their lovers had fallen short of the mark, and these women were disappointed and angry.
I wish I could say this is not the norm, that most people I bump into are able to find joy and meaning in the little things, in the day to day guestures that friends adn family use to tell us we are loved and appreciated. That we matter. When I was a therapist I worked with couples who getting married or newly married. One of the things we discussed was how we perceive we are loved. Sadly, several of these couples stated they only felt valued and loved if there partner showed them through grand guestures.
On one hand, that's very romantic. I think we want to be swept off our feet, but when we rely on grand guestures, what was grand yesterday becomes normal and the guestures need to increase in complexity or weight in order to be considered, well, grand.
No one can sustain this. And when we focus on the grand, we miss out on the simple and the honest and the authentic.
It's the little things that over time make or break a relationship. Maybe that's where we should be spending our energies, taking care of the little things, noticing the little things, being thankful for the little things.