Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Follow Your Bliss

1. supreme happiness; utter joy or contentment.
2. Theology.  the joy of heaven.

You may be asking yourself; "Why is she writing about bliss?  She just wrote about happiness a couple of days ago...isn't that the same thing?"

In my opinion, nope.

I believe that happiness is something we can control.  Something we determine, and have power over.  It's a way of thinking.  It's not easy...but your outlook and attitude directly affect your ability to be happy or not.
Bliss is something that we can't make happen. We do whatever we can to put ourselves in situations that may lead to us feeling blissful....but it is a feeling that needs to happen on it's own....you can't force it.
It's kind of like love that way.  We all want it, but we have to put the work in first. (Unless you are a baby. Or a puppy.  Then you get a free "love pass.")  ;)

When is the last time you felt blissful? When you felt like all the stars had aligned, and you were just giddy and full of joy?
I think that is a feeling we get when we are in the beginning stages of a good relationship.  When everything is exciting and new.  We spend this first months walking on clouds and sliding down rainbows. ;)
No wonder marriage is hard work.  It is impossible to effortlessly maintain that blissful feeling.  10 years from now, nothing is going to feel new.  It is going to feel routine.  And those little quirks that you used to find adorable are probably the things that drive you nuts now.
If only we could bottle bliss.

Did you ever think that maybe you are trying too hard?
Maybe you have created expectations that are so unrealistic, there is no way you will ever be content, because there is no way you or your loved one(s) will ever be able to live up to those expectations.
I had a big problem with that.  My decorating magazine and book addiction had driven me to believe that until I lived in what I saw in those pictures...I wouldn't be happy.  I knew I would be happy then.  Whenever I would work on the house, and finish a room, I would get this high.  I felt blissful.  And, every time I walked into that room, I felt blissful...until some time had passed, and the newness wore off, and I needed another project so I could find that high again.

I was like that with my work also.  I would take on a big project, and drive my family nuts while I slaved away at it for weeks....riding the high, since it always lead to a performance.  Then, I would sink into the pit, because the high was over.
Adrenaline was my drug.  Bliss was my drug.
Withdrawl sucked.
No wonder so many people get divorced.

Once I started backing away from the craziness....and slowing down, I noticed something that I didn't expect.  I didn't need to be moving 100 mph to feel good, to feel blissful.  I could slow down, and when I did, I was able to actually start to enjoy the things around me.  Simple things, like having time to read a book in the afternoon with a hot mug of coffee.  Eating dinner with my kids every night.  Going on dates with my husband.  Cooking!  (What a concept!)  Just little, everyday things, that I had always rushed through, because I always had somewhere else I had to be.  Now, when I can sit in my comfy chair, and just be....I feel blissful.

I used to worry about all the things I was missing out on if I stayed home.  I felt like I needed to get out there, and be where the action was.  Life was so much more exciting when I was out on the town...hanging out with people, having fun.
Looking back....I wasn't missing out on anything.  Sleep.  That is about it.  Sure, I miss the people I always hung around with, but I don't miss anything else.  I absolutely cherish my time at home now.  I never feel anxious about being here while "everyone else" is at a big party or concert or whatever.  
Honestly, every single night (or late afternoon....I admit..I do this as early as possible)I can't wait to put my pj's on, and either wrap up in a blanket on the couch, or just hop into bed with my books and remote.  When I know I am done with any responsibilities for the day....I feel blissful!  I LOVE IT!

This pic is from "The Nesting Place" by McQuillin Smith.  She is the woman who started the "31 Day Challenge."  This is in my top 5 decorating books EVER.  You should totally check it out.  She is a creative genius.  Get on her blog too.


So, what is it that makes you feel blissful?

Is it little things?  Like that first bite of double chocolate fudge cake?  Or waking up to a clean house, and a fresh pot of coffee?  (I would probably pass out if that ever happened at my house.)
Maybe a sweet, unexpected note or text from your beloved?
A glass of wine in your favorite chair after a long week at work?
or maybe it is something that you do?
Caring for someone who is sick?
Singing your heart out on stage?
Delivering meals to the homebound?

It can be anything...but whatever it is, make sure when you feel that bliss, you stop and acknowledge it.
I think we are always moving so fast, we don't even realize what we are feeling, unless it is something negative.  I can remember all the bad things that have happened to me....but not so many of the good things.
Maybe if we make ourselves take notice when we are feeling good, feeling happy, feeling downright blissful....our outlook will start to change.
I know I would much prefer to look back on my life, and only remember all of the wonderful things I had experienced...rather than the heartache.
Obviously, bliss is important to me.  Heck, I named my blog "Finding My Bliss."  I tried to use it for my domain name as well...but alas, it was already taken.  I was shocked to see there were no other "bedbethandtheblog's" :)
Notice, I use "finding" rather than "follow" when it comes to my bliss.  I am still searching.  I am getting closer everyday...and the pieces I have found, I have started to follow.  But I am not going to stop at a couple pieces...I want the whole enchilada.  I want complete bliss. 

So, today...seek out what makes you feel fantastic.  Go outside and breathe in the fresh air.  Heck, hold out your arms, throw back your head and spin!  Take it all in!  Kids do this all the time....but as adults, we forget to enjoy what is all around us.  
Go play in the leaves, or carve some pumpkins.  Eat some candy corn, light you fall candles.  Every one of those things sound blissful to me.
Seek it out....make it happen.  


  1. I have mentioned a lot of things that makes me feel blissful in my 31 days posts about joy. I have also had a comparison problem between what I am currently living and the ideals I have in my head. I have found it helpful to be grateful for what I have and to look for moments of joy in every day, whether they are huge or just small things.

  2. This is interesting! I think i might be a bit of a bliss junkie too - definitely a perfectionist!

  3. Timdani,
    I so agree! It really is about looking for the joy in the ordinary, every day moments. If we spend all of our time waiting for something big and exciting to happen, we miss out on so much. I have the same issue of having this perfect picture of how my life should be in my head. I am trying to consciously stay in the moment, and be happy that I am here to enjoy everything I have. Wishing you lots of bliss! xo

  4. Melissa,
    Yay! A fellow bliss junkie! I think we picked the right vice! Wishing you all things blissful! xo