Gratitude, Beauty and Happiness

I've been thinking a lot about gratitude lists and taking moments to reflect on all the positivity around me. Yesterday I heard a clip on NPR about happiness and the science behind it. I can't find a link, but they referred to this study.

Essentially the guest was discussing whether it's better to want what you have or have what you want.
Later, at home, I started looking around at all the clutter and stuff with new eyes, categorizing each thing in want/don't want. When something was a don't want, I asked myself, "Is it necessary?" If the answer was yes, then the next question, "Why don't I want it? Is it broken? Just ugly?"

Then comes, "Can I remedy the situation? Can I fix it, paint it, love it for what it is?"

I don't think the answer to happiness is being surrounded by beauty, though a well-appointed house must surely contribute to a tranquil home. I do think there must be an aesthetic balance, and I do think contemplating need is important.

So simple, so revolutionary.

1 comment:

Sarah said...

My mother and I are both great collectors. I've been trying to simplify my life and belongings over the past year and she has been trying to do the same. In a number of emails she has sent me the following quote and I've been trying to take it to heart each time I am rearranging and sorting my many many things...

"Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful."
William Morris