Getting enough sleep. Nothing kills our joy like fatigue. We were made to rest, nightly (sleep) and weekly (Sabbath). Ensuring that we get enough rest in this culture can be a challenge, but when we don’t our attitude suffers as well as our performance.
Staying within budget. Emptying out our pockets (and perhaps those of others) is fun in the moment, but remorse soon sets in when bills are due and the event or expenditure is past tense. Moderation and a good dose of reality is helpful here.
Managing expectations. It’s really fun to dream big. We imagine ourselves in the starring role of an epic movie written just for us. But reality has a way of disappointing. The bigger we dream, the more likely we are to be disenchanted. The solution is to “play the movie forward” and consider alternate (and possibly less favorable) endings and then adjust our expectations.
Over-planning and under-planning. Planning is essential to get any task done well, but over-planning chokes the life out of any venture. It becomes exhausting and doesn’t allow for any spontaneity. Under-planning is often a prescription for chaos and conflict. A good balance is always the best remedy.
Present in the moment. We can get so anxious about how all the details of an event are unfolding that we can lose the joy and significance of the moment. We can’t go back. We can only go forward. Spend your time with great awareness.
Light heartedness and a good sense of humor. Stuff happens unexpectedly and our ability to deal with it in a pleasant manner makes all the difference between our social success and failure. Don’t take yourself too seriously.
People are more important than things. Having a welcoming heart and emotional connection with people is much more important than a pretty centerpiece or perfectly matching colors. Those things will soon be forgotten, but your smile and kind words will last a lifetime. Be generous with your affection and you will never be alone.