When I think about what contentment looks like, I think of a purring cat. If there’s anything that illustrates happiness better, I don’t know what that would be. And it doesn’t take much for cats to be content: a sunny spot on the floor, a full tummy, a lap to curl up on – those are the ingredients for contentment when you’re a cat.
Why is it so hard for humans to reach that same state of contentment? Why do so many of us always look for the next best thing? For some people, the mindset for happiness is a never-ending cycle of always wanting more. Perhaps we’d do well to learn from our cats when it comes to mastering contentment.
We live in a world filled with greed, anger and depression. It seems impossible to find contentment in such a world. However, achieving a state of contentment is a mindset change and has nothing to do with making external changes to your life. Try the following:
- Practice gratitude in everything you do. The energy of gratitude is a powerful force. It can shift your mood and your thoughts from a place of scarcity to a place of abundance and joy. Gratitude is all about being in the present moment. Even when you do something as simple as household chores, remind yourself to be grateful that you have a house to clean.
- Simplify your life. Give up things that no longer serve you. There’s something very freeing about clearing out clutter. Toxic relationships fall into that category, too. If a relationship no longer nourishes you, it may be time to rethink it.
- Make time and space for quiet time. Whether it’s being in nature, praying, or meditating, simply being helps you to slow your thoughts, to connect with your spirit, and allows contentment to come to you.
- Have fun! Be open to new experiences and people.
- Be gentle with yourself. Making changes to your life is a process. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t meditate every day, or if you’re not “getting it right.”
For me, it doesn’t take all that much to be content. A perfectly brewed cup of tea or coffee, a book I’ve been wanting to read, and a cat or two curled up next to me or in my lap: there are some of the things that bring me a sense of peace and contentment.
What makes you feel content?