Pleasant: causing a feeling of happiness.
For me, a pleasant event would be sitting on the beach, watching the tide rolling in, the waves breaking on the shore, the seagulls flying, dipping and diving. Or looking through some of the tens of thousands of photographs Cee has taken over the years, because I remember every adventure we were on, and the fun we had.
What if we keep a Pleasant Events log, similar to a gratitude journal? That’s the assignment I have in a mindfulness class I’m taking. The class has you log pleasant events that happen to you every day, and then jot down some notes about them to reinforce the positive feelings you had. Happiness is like any other discipline; the more you practice it, the better you are at achieving it. So we log the pleasant events, and use them to grow more of the same.
Here are the questions we’re supposed to answer about our pleasant events:
- What was the experience?
- Were you aware of the pleasant feelings while the event was happening?
- How did your body feel, in detail, during the experience?
- What moods, feelings and thoughts accompanied this event?
- What thoughts, sensations and emotions do you notice now as you write this down?
I logged an event the other morning when I woke up and felt light on my feet as I walked out of the bedroom. My feet are usually the last part of me to wake up in the morning, but the other day I felt like I was walking on air. There was a bounce in my step that I’m not used to, which is why it caught my attention. I felt taller, thinner, more nimble. Walking was effortless. Every part of me felt awake and alert. I was surprised at how I felt, at how I moved. I wanted to have that feeling every morning, every time I took a step. It was wonderful to have that freedom of movement.
That was a few days ago. The mornings that followed it were pretty normal, and had none of those transcendent moments, sadly. The memory is still with me, though. I’m going to start focusing on it to see if I can repeat that feeling. If my mind can remember it, can my body remember it as well, and repeat it?
What are pleasant experiences for you? When you look at old pictures, can you still feel like you are there, in the moment? Does your body remember how that felt?