Mental health & wellbeing matters: the little things

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In our regular spot on our site where we chat about mental health and wellbeing, a few thoughts on chasing the little things in life.

‘The little things… there’s nothing bigger, is there?’ – Vanilla Sky.

It’s true. The things we dismiss as ‘little things’ are actually some of the most important things. They keep us going when the days are too long and times are too hard. Those little moments give us a small burst of joy, like little stepping stones to help us get from A-to-B, mentally. And they differ from person to person, but they’re no less relevant.

After a long hard day at work, perhaps you’re looking forward to that lasagne you promised yourself you’d have. You haven’t had one for so long, and you can practically taste it as you glance at the clock and count down the minutes until dinner time. Or perhaps you have been waiting for a year for a new game and the company have just teased you on social media that ‘something is coming’ – and it’s about bloody time.

Whatever the ‘things’ are, we shouldn’t be ashamed of them or afraid to acknowledge how they make us feel, because in those moments the little things are detrimental to our mood and our will to keep going.

Here are just a few of the ‘little things’ that give me a moment or two, when I’m feeling overwhelmed, to just not hate life so much:

  • Gigs – I’ve seen various bands perform live. My two favourite bands have already had the pleasure of my attendance, twice. One will soon have me in the crowd for a third time. And the photos and videos I have from each show keep me in that moment.
  • Music – As I just mentioned, I have two favourite bands. Whether listening to older music or newer music, I do get excited about hearing them and the feelings their songs evoke. And newer music also comes with tour dates and new merchandise. Can never have too many hoodies.
  • Stickers – I don’t even know how I got to be so hooked on stickers, but I have motivational ones, feminism ones, Pride ones, funny ones, and more. I have no idea what I’m using them for, yet, but I have them and that’s… fun.
  • Star Wars – While everybody else has been getting themselves excited about Barbie and Oppenheimer, I have been (and still am, at present) excitedly counting down to the new Ahsoka show, soon to hit Disney+. You can’t see me, right now, but I’m happy dancing.
  • Meetings – Although often fleeting, I have met a few celebrities in my time and those are moments I cherish. I have had a hug from two of them, and for someone as awkward about physical contact as me, they’re fantastic memories.
  • Crafting – I am currently in the very early stages (okay, fine – I have ideas) for a project that involves my Mum’s sewing machine and some Star Wars

Be it a new show, a colouring book, the perfect cup of tea at the end of a long day, or finally perfecting the dance routine you’ve been seeing on TikTok – if it makes you happy and hurts nobody, go all in. Because those are the moments that may not seem like it at the time, but are the inspiration, the motivation, the confidence boost, and the reminder that life isn’t always shit. And that is huge. We need that.

For today, I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of my new microwave. It’s been years since I had one, and I am looking forward to zapping a baked potato in just minutes. (Shush. I’m 40. It’s exciting.)

So, what little things boost your mood? What are you focused on today?

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