101 Simple Pleasures in Life That Can Brighten Your Day

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Many of you would agree that, given the opportunity, we would jump at the chance to do something simple in life over more complicated things. We’d love to be able to take a step back and take the pressure off.

Life is full of challenges, many of which are the source of our various anxieties and stresses. These hurdles have weighed many of us down mentally and emotionally… and even began to affect us physically. That is why it is more vital than ever that we take joy in the simple pleasures in life.

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What Are Simple Pleasures?

Simple pleasures are the low-hanging fruit in life. Those are things we can take pleasure in and enjoy without much effort, time, or money spent on our part.

The last two years have been filled with a lot of uncertainty for all of us. As a result, we have been limited in travel, vacations, and many other activities we usually participate in to get away and enjoy life. However, simple pleasures help us have some of the same benefits of vacationing and rest without the added cost of plane tickets and hotel rooms.

As you read this article, you will be encouraged to take some time out for “you.” You will also see many practical steps you can take to change your outlook and take pleasure in the simplicity of daily life again. Here are 101 simple pleasures to help you find joy in life.

101 Simple Pleasures in Life That Can Brighten Your Day

1. Take a hot bubble bath.

One of the most relaxing things to do after a hard day is to relax in a hot bubble bath. Relieve your stress and ease your troubles.

2. Drink a cup of coffee.

There are few things in life more refreshing than a cup of coffee. Sip and enjoy.

3. Sit down and put your feet up.

Whether you're in a recliner or using an ottoman, one of the simple pleasures in life is relaxing with your feet up.

4. Watch the sunrise.

Enjoying a sunrise is literal and symbolic of a brighter day. A sunrise helps us see the potential of a more auspicious day.

5. Go for a short, brisk walk.

One simple pleasure in life is to step out and get a breath of fresh air while enjoying the scenery.

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Go for a short, brisk walk outside while enjoying the scenery.

6. Light a scented candle.

The pleasurable scent of your favorite candle is one of those simple pleasures that will certainly lighten your mood.

7. Smell fresh, clean laundry out of the dryer.

The smell of freshly cleaned clothes and towels can be very comforting.

8. Eat a chocolate candy bar.

Some of life’s problems simply melt away for a moment when you bite into a silky sweet piece of chocolate.

9. Go on a scenic car ride.

Nothing like enjoying nature while on a scenic drive. It is a simple pleasure for sure.

10. Cook a nice breakfast.

Nothing like having a well-balanced breakfast to start your day. The labor is worth the enjoyment, and it “is” the most important meal of the day.

11. Watch your favorite TV show.

After a rough day, your favorite comedy, drama, suspense, or scary movie can be great.

12. Build a fire.

One of life’s most simple pleasures is sitting back and appreciating the smell of burning wood in the fireplace or a bonfire. It's one of the best smells ever.

13. Take your dog for a walk.

Walking with your best friend and a favorite pal can be among the day's best moments.

14. Make a fresh pitcher of lemonade.

Indulge in a refreshing drink of lemonade. You’ll be so glad you did, and your taste buds will thank you.

15. Drink an ice-cold glass of water.

A refreshing cold glass of hydrating and thirst-quenching water could be an excellent form of self-care.

16. Go for a morning run.

Jumpstart your adrenaline and start your day on the right foot with a nice run.

17. Enjoy the sound of waves on the beach.

The resounding crashing of waves as the wind blows gently against your skin and through your hair is one of life’s simple pleasures.

18. Listen to your favorite song.

Nothing changes our moods faster than listening to our favorite song.

19. Smell your favorite flowers.

The calming smell of fresh-cut flowers is so simple yet undervalued.

20. Stretching.

Stretching will release tension, aches, and pains and help enhance your mood going into your day.

21. Relaxing time spent with a special person.

Time spent in the presence of someone who loves and admires you will brighten your day.

Snuggle, hug, hold hands, or lay your head on their shoulder and chill.

22. Read a good book.

Reading a good book and letting your mind escape the troubles of the present is a simple pleasure worth enjoying.

23. Crocheting

Knit a blanket, sweater, or shoes for your grandbaby. It can be therapeutic and enjoyable.

24. Put on some makeup.

Ladies, when you look good, you feel good. So put on some makeup and look your absolute best as you go through your day.

25. Go for a swim.

Having the ability to take a refreshing dip in the pool after a hot and stressful day is a blessing that you should take advantage of, weather permitting, of course.

26. Go for a bike ride.

Release endorphins and enjoy the breeze as you ride. It will help you rest well later.

27. Take a nap.

In all the busyness of life, it is vital to plan times to rest. A good power nap can be a great stress reliever.

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A good power nap can be a great stress reliever.

28. Count your blessings.

An old song says, “Count Your Blessings, name them one by one….”

It is a simple pleasure that will unlock a sense of joy and thankfulness within you.

29. Watch your children play.

One of life's simple pleasures and great joys is watching your children have fun and just “be kids.”

30. Lay back and watch the stars.

Some of my most enjoyable moments to ponder life and relax my mind have been lying outside and enjoying the stars at night.

31. Flirting.

One simple pleasure you may enjoy is flirting. It will bring great amusement to your day, maybe even the opportunity to meet someone special.

32. Smell the rain.

Step outdoors and take in the relaxing smell in the air after a downpour.

33. Take a lazy day.

Even God rested or (ceased from work) on the seventh day. We need to do so once a week if possible.

34. Give a thoughtful gift to someone you care for.

It is indeed more blessed to give than to receive. It will brighten your day when brightening the day of others.

35. Sleep on clean bed sheets.

Wash those bed sheets and see whether you will feel restful and relaxed lying on them.

36. Go to the movies.

There is nothing like going to a movie theater and enjoying the latest blockbuster or a matinee. Grab a large popcorn and a large soft drink.

37. Enjoy the smell of fresh-cut grass.

Sit on the porch while enjoying the aroma of a freshly mowed lawn. It can be one of the brighter spots of a summer’s day.

38. Get a massage.

Whether full-body or targeted like a foot or shoulder massage, a massage is a satisfying way to relieve stress, achy muscles and enhance your mood.

39. Watch a comedy show.

Laughter is good, like medicine. It can be healing and therapeutic.

40. Paint a portrait.

Many artists get lost in their work and lose track of time. Yet, it is so satisfying, and the sense of completion will brighten your day.

41. Meditation and mindfulness.

Calm your mind, lighten your load, and lift your spirits.

42. Journal your experiences.

Sometimes, getting your feelings down on paper can be the relief you need amid stressful circumstances. For information on getting started journaling, see The Ultimate Guide on How to Start a Journaling Habit and Stick to It...

43. Speak positive affirmations to yourself.

Build yourself up with positivity and reassurance when you may feel overwhelmed. Click here for more affirmations.

44. Sitting in front of a fan on a hot day.

I personally find few things as relaxing as sitting in front of a fan and feeling the cool breeze on a hot summer day.

45. People watching.

I've heard many express enjoyment of the simple pleasures of sitting on a bench inside Walmart, the mall, or the park and watching people.

46. Watching animals play.

A fun and cute way to find amusement is sitting back and watching animals in nature run up and down trees, drink from a creek, build a nest, and fly through the air.

47. Watch a ball game on TV.

Catch your favorite team on TV. Then, enjoy the game while grabbing a pizza or your favorite flavor of chicken wings.

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Enjoy watching your favorite team on TV while grabbing a pizza.

48. Take lots of pictures.

Take pictures of breathtaking landscapes in your area or the clouds in the sky on a sunny day.

49. Enjoy a relaxing sunset.

I wanted to say this first… it is one of my all-time favorite simple pleasures. You will find the sky can be one of God's most incredible palates where we can see the most awe-inspiring beauty. It will certainly brighten your day.

50. Go on a picnic.

Have it on a blanket on a lovely spring day in the park. This may be just the atmosphere you need to brighten your mood.

51. Go fishing.

Cast away your care while casting your bait in the water. You’ll be as snug as a bug on a rug.

52. Watch TikTok videos.

Explore some of the silliest and gut-busting videos while on TikTok. It will put you in a good mood for sure.

53. Shoot around on the basketball court.

Putting up some shots on the basketball court is a great way to brighten your day.

54. Cook dinner for your family.

Seeing the smiles on your relatives' faces as they enjoy the meal you prepared for them will make your day. It’s a labor of love that you’ll say was worthwhile.

55. Call an old friend on the phone.

You may not have spoken with your friend for months or even years, but the joy you’ll experience from the conversation will be worth it. In addition, it will feel like you just picked up where you last left off in your relationship.

56. Pray.

Prayer is an untapped resource we often underutilize. Still, it is an essential simple pleasure for our sanity and overall well-being.

57. Completing a task you have been procrastinating on.

The sense of accomplishment will encourage you to keep going. It will also brighten your day.

58. Ax throwing.

This activity has risen in popularity in recent years. It is a great way to release tension and anxiety.

59. Play video games.

Video games are a great way to relax and take a load off after a trying day. Games are also helpful to have on your phone, especially when you're in a waiting room at the doctor's office. It will take your mind off the report you're waiting on and other uncertainty you feel.

60. Color in a coloring book.

Coloring will take your mind off things, and you'll begin focusing on completing the image and how it looks when finished. A simple pleasure that you’ll find comforting.

61. Fixing your hair and taking a selfie.

You'll find relief when you've worked to get your hair looking great and then take a selfie. Especially when you post a few photos on social media and your friends shower you with sincere compliments.

62. Listen to an encouraging sermon.

Sermons are meant to build us up and strengthen us. The best time to be empowered is when we are at our weakest point.

63. Build a snowman.

Take advantage of a snowy day by building a snowman in the fresh snow. It’s fun and will bring out your creative and carefree side.

64. Go hiking in the woods.

The sounds of nature and being encased amongst the trees is an excellent way to relieve stress and put the cares of this life on the back burner.

65. Bake your favorite cookies.

An excellent simple pleasure is enjoying the wonderful smell of cookies in the oven. It is sure to brighten your day.

66. Let the sunshine in.

Open those curtains and blinds and allow the sun to shine in. Your day will be brighter, literally and figuratively.

67. Draft a poem.

A great and creative way to show your thoughts on paper.

68. Brighten someone else's day.

There is no way your mood doesn't improve knowing you are brightening someone else's day. You are sowing seeds toward a harvest of joy in your life.

69. Holding hands with your significant other.

There is a sweetness in the simplicity of holding hands with the man or woman who has won your heart.

70. Kiss on the forehead.

A kiss on the forehead symbolizes comfort, adoration, and affection. A simple pleasure that will brighten any day.

71. Going for a drive with the radio turned up.

Get in the car, put on your sunglasses, buckle your seatbelt, check your mirrors, and put on your favorite song. Now back out of the driveway, put your car into drive, crank the music high, and sing along with the music.

72. Play a musical instrument.

Playing your guitar, piano, drums, and other instruments will enhance your mood and brighten your day for the musically inclined.

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Playing your favorite instruments, such as your guitar, can greatly enhance your mood and brighten your day.

73. Drink a milkshake.

Chocolate, Vanilla, Strawberry, or a flavor of your choosing. A milkshake helps to bring out the kid in you.

74. Relaxing in a hammock.

Spending a pleasant evening in a hammock in the backyard is an excellent way to enjoy life.

75. Go on a motorcycle ride.

A scenic ride on a motorcycle with your sweetheart is a simple pleasure that will unlock your carefree nature and lift your spirits.

76. Take a hot shower.

Relieve those achy muscles and relax your body and mind with a hot shower. Add singing to it to make the most of this simple pleasure.

77. Enjoy a bowl of cereal.

Personally, eating a bowl of cereal, especially a childhood favorite, makes me feel like a kid again.

78. Clean up your vehicle.

A great sense of pride and accomplishment comes with cleaning your ride from the inside out.

79. Cuddle with your significant other.

In the bed or on the couch, time spent snuggling with your partner can be a huge stress reliever. Science has also proven that the act can help life expectancy because of the many health benefits.

80. Smile.

You look so much better when you do. When you smile, it encourages others to do the same. For more on the ways to make your day happier, visit 121 Smile Quotes to Make Your Day a Little Happier.

81. Spend some time alone.

Many of us are busy supporting our families, co-workers, and friends. Now is the time to do something for yourself by yourself. It will help you regroup.

82. Clean out your closets.

Decluttering your closets and donating clothes to others in need is an excellent way to enjoy a simple pleasure.

83. Go through old photos.

Take a trip down memory lane by looking through old photos online or even photo albums and scrapbooks you have at home.

84. Stay in small luxury hotels.

To break up routine and experience new things, try booking a stay in small luxury hotels for your vacations. You won't break the bank but will still feel like you are treating yourself.

85. Spend a long day with a loved one.

If you have lost touch with a close friend or loved one or you only get to see them every so often because of busy schedules, then spend a long day with a loved one doing something you both find relaxing.

86. Explore a new place.

Traveling isn't just about reaching your destination. It is also about the journey to get there. Explore a new place, spread your wings of imagination, and see how relaxing and eye-opening the experience can be.

87. Say, “I love you” out of the blue.

Saying I love you out of the blue is a good way to put a smile on someone's face. It can also be said as you look in the mirror as a positive affirmation to yourself.

88. Try slow living.

Slow living simply means being more intentional with your time. It doesn't mean you have to pack your calendar full of events and social functions. Practice patience and act less in more time.

89. Find a peaceful place to sit.

Finding a peaceful place to sit is a good thing to do when you need to find a retreat and a place that brings you a sense of calm when your day becomes too hectic.

90. Indulge in a hot fudge sundae.

Stop denying yourself one of life's most simple pleasures. Don't be afraid to indulge in a delicious hot fudge sundae.

91. Walk barefoot through the grass.

A quick morning walk through your grass barefoot can be all you need to create a pleasant morning atmosphere, reduce stress, and improve your mood for the day.

92. The sound of your mother's voice.

Our mother's voice has a soothing effect and can release oxytocin in the brain. This love hormone can help diminish stress and strengthen the bond between mother and child.

93. Think of a memory that makes you smile.

Go through old photographs, videos, and trinkets to spark memories of the past that make you smile. Remembering the good old days can make you feel happier.

94. Enjoy a nice tickle fight.

Did you know that tickling stimulates your hypothalamus? This is the area in the brain that is in charge of our emotional reactions. When we are tickled, we not only have fun but also experience an autonomic emotional response.

95. Take a hot shower in the winter after playing in the fresh snow.

The transition from the cool weather and fresh snow to a hot and steamy shower. Showers have been linked to improved mental health and can reduce any feelings of depression and anxiety. The warm water relaxes not only your muscles but also your mind.

96. Squeeze a fresh glass of orange juice.

What is more satisfying than enjoying a nice tall glass of fresh orange juice you took the time out of your day to squeeze yourself?

97. Splash your face with water.

Even just a quick splash of cold water on the face can make us feel better, improve our mood, and give our skin a healthier glow.

98. A pillow fight.

A pillow fight is a legendary game that people often play together in a relaxed and energized atmosphere. It can boost your mood, reduce stress, and let you rediscover the mischievous days of your youth.

99. Fall into a freshly raked pile of leaves.

There is nothing more satisfying than being able to fall backward into a huge pile of leaves you have just spent the day raking. You may remember this from your childhood.

100. Set your intentions for the day.

When you take the time to set your intentions for the day, you can better focus on each moment. You will better recognize the value in what you do. It can also raise your emotional energy.

101. Make a bucket list.

When you make a bucket list, you live for your hopes and aspirations. It is a good way to reflect on your goals and identify important milestones in your life so you don't miss out on any of life's experiences.

Why Are These Simple Pleasures Important?

While many of our list of 101 simple pleasures in life may seem like small and simple things and almost insignificant, we are using our senses to appreciate each thing we do. When doing this, we learn how to practice gratitude which can lead us to more happiness in our daily life.

Enjoying each simple pleasure gives us the chance to slow down and actually experience life through all these little things. This will significantly impact our personal growth and our overall level of contentment.

Final Thoughts on Simple Pleasures in Life that Can Brighten Your Day

Remember, the keyword here is simple. While an island getaway would be a fabulous way to brighten your mood, taking pleasure in the simplest of things may not cost a thing… or require much effort on our part.

It’s about being thankful and taking time to smell the roses while also finding peace in the things in life we often take for granted. As you seek to enjoy a better year in 2022, we are here to help. View and enjoy more of our informative content at DevelopGoodHabits.com.

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