The classic song “Little Things Mean A Lot” serenades us with the value of small yet loving gestures between lovers. Touch my hair as you pass my chair. Give me your arm as we cross the street. Give me a hand when I’ve lost my way. Send me the warmth of a secret smile. Little things mean a lot.
When it comes to love, those small gestures do deepen relationships. Research on more than 4,000 people looked at relationship quality, maintenance and happiness. What they discovered? Everyday acts of love can lead to a happier, healthier and stronger relationship, even more than big gestures like romantic getaways and expensive jewelry.
Proof that those little things can make a big impact when it comes to the happiness and quality of your relationships.
The thing is, little things don’t just matter in love relationships. They matter when it comes to the overall quality of your life. The right kind of little things can make your life more nourishing. And the pesky little things can make your life feel more like a battle.
When I began to understand that there was immense value in finding love for the everyday living, I started paying more attention to the little things.
I knew that having a coffee cup that I loved was important, as was having the right kind of coaster for my desk important, too. Both of these are small, seemingly insignificant items, but having them makes my everyday existence feel as if it’s cherished time.
Then, there are those small little pesky things that are like a fly buzzing around – not really hurting you, but still irritating you and tripping you up. The burned out light bulb in the downstairs powder room. The pair of slacks that need the hem repaired.
Darling, you deserve to tend to the little things in your life. You deserve to enhance your life in tiny ways that seem insignificant, yet make you feel supported in your life. You also deserve to not let the little things get in the way of really sinking into your daily life.
I’m no stranger to the power of little things bringing big impact to the quality of my daily life. I’m also no stranger to allowing those little irritations to pile up until they become BIG irritations. In the past month, I’ve made it my mission to tackle the little things I’ve been meaning to do.
- I finally got a window shade to go over the kitchen sink. It blocks the morning sun on the rare occasion we want to sleep in. AND, it’s a gorgeous shade of rust that enhanced the beauty of our home.
- I finally replaced my missing car antenna and now, instead of only getting three radio stations, I get dozens.
- I got my eyebrows dyed so that I look a bit more polished, with or without make-up. (My eyebrows are naturally much lighter than my hair)
- I had a pin board made for my office. I found a beautiful frame I loved, purchased a roll of cork, had it dry-mounted and then installed in the frame. Gone is the disappointment in the board from Pottery Barn that didn’t work. And looking at my board gives me a deep sense of pleasure – and helps with productivity and deadline reminders!
- I deleted phone numbers of people I don’t call anymore. Like my hairdresser in Texas, the client I haven’t done work for since my consulting days, and a friend I’ve long since parted ways with. No more scrolling down memory lane.
- I purchased a new office chair. The old one would slowly begin sinking throughout the day until I couldn’t comfortably reach the keyboard. This one is more comfortable AND the height stays locked in place.
- I finally got rid of the piles of worn out sheets and towels that were crowding our linen closet. Not only did I go through them and ditch anything we don’t use or is worn out, but I took them to Goodwill the next week.
- I took some time with my new journal, writing little love notes to myself on random pages to discover as I work through it.
- I finished a mini-vision board for my book, something I’ve been “meaning to do” for ages, but hadn’t.
Though I know from experience that these little things matter, I’m still surprised when I can breathe a little deeper after tackling some of this stuff. I’m also shocked at how these little shifts have made a big impact on how I feel about myself, my home, my work, my relationships, and my life. And many of these seemingly little things have made me more productive and less stressed.
How can you get from here to there? What can you do to allow those little things to add up to big love for yourself and your life? Well, kitten, it’s time to put pen to paper! I’m sharing with you my own personal systems for tackling the little things.
There are two pages: “My List of Little Enhancements” and “My List of Little Undone Things”
How do I use it? I print this duo out, brainstorm a list of things that I’m longing for and things that have been bugging me. Then, I have a game plan in place. Tasks to tackle when I’m feeling restless or bored. Reminders of things I’ve been meaning to pick up when I run errands.
This isn’t a “to do” list to add burden to your life.
Think of it as a dream list of little things to make your life more nourishing, supportive and downright loveable.
When you are tempted to eat out of boredom (and habit), while away the hours on Facebook, etc – look at your list and choose something to complete or work on that would feel empowering or pleasurable. Look at it when you head out to run errands to see if there’s something you’ve been meaning to pick up or do.
As you begin to complete things, you’ll discover that life isn’t as complicated as we thought it was. You’ll find that small adjustments and little details, like fresh flowers on your desk, make a big impact on your happiness, how you feel about your life and yourself.
Little things mean a lot. Those seemingly small, insignificant details really do matter. Isn’t it time that you serenaded yourself with a love song in your daily life.
PS – You will need to “Save As” for the Digital Version to allow you to fill in the blanks electronically.