Notting Hill Gate, Central Line, the first set of escalators. Quietly sliding down the stairs, trying to manage a pram which is almost upside down while tightly squeezing a tiny human’s hand right next to it; people smile at me and I smile back. Walls are free of adds (a rarity in this metropole’s underground mad concrete jungle) and THE very reason of my 23 seconds of happiness each time I find myself here.
Most of us tend to believe happiness is a terminus, a destination with a pretty landscape view, a last stop we should try and get to on a faster pace. This is the very place that makes us feel untouchable, safe and less vulnerable to the outside ruthless vibes. Watching Fearne, new mum of two who plainly, yet finely states that happiness is in fact acceptance; being truly at peace with who we are, I start to feel I’ve been looking at this ‘pursuing happiness’ hunt all wrong. As I recently became pretty engaged with her effortless Pursuit of Happiness project, I took a journey back into my own timeline and space and looked closely at the very things that made me feel contentment but how I hadn’t always known how to live more in the momentum.
My happy places…They differ from one day to another as they should be anyway. I won’t use any sophisticated research words to state the obvious because today is all about remembering the little things, the fine struggle to get here, the London studio flat with the shyest ray of natural daylight, but on that sweet little corner street right by the cloudy waters of Thames, where a determined law student is rehearsing cases on the bathroom floor in order to make more space for his tiny human screaming blue murder and his new mum who has no clue on what could comfort him further…
Whatever and whoever puts a smile on my face. Happiness is when browsing through Lil Cubs’ photo gallery and watch the innocence unveil. Happiness is hidden inside a Trunkaroo box every first Wednesday of the month when tiny curious hands get busy crafting. A little bit of happiness comes with the after tantrum moment when the toddler still pulls my hair and pokes me in the eye so he could have a good excuse to intensity and genuinely kiss his purple masterpiece – my forehead bruise or scratch. Then hits again with a wooden toy to make sure I pay uninterrupted attention to his world discovery.
Happy is when I pause life. When on a summer afternoon, the book and I go on the shortest journey to Hampstead Heath to chill on that bench at the Pergola, right when wisteria madness takes over the city. When I live more in the present; when I forget about the picture perfect, right timings or better looking rested skin. When I do not postpone the awe the present offers me, when I widen my eyes and let it overwhelm me.
Before sinking into self-helping books and following social media trends of overnight born gurus, remember not to compere yourself to anyone else around you, but to a better version of your future self. Years of research testify that the one most important factor in our own happiness is the power of our relationships with the others around us as well as the amount of our time we spend with family and friends, so rely on them as often as you can.
Not letting myself trapped in a constant pursuit of happiness makes my motherhood coat feel lighter on my shoulders as this is in itself a journey where a healthy mix of worries, doubts, questions and challenges are compulsory for a better satisfaction outcome. Looking for happiness in all the wrong places can suck up all the energy you deeply need before crashing down overwhelmed by frustrations and self destructive thoughts. No wonder 75% of British women go for holistic practices like yoga, mindfulness or meditation in search of a balance. Many find what they are looking for, while others don’t. Maybe they simply ignore the pause-life button…I hope you won’t because happiness is a bargain treat life gives back when you understand its true nature…
Happy is how you feel in front of Evelina’s camera at the Evelina Ra Photography, the one responsible for taking these delightful colours captured at the Hampstead Heath Pergola Hill and Gardens (which I see as a lost piece of ancient Rome in our buzzing city…).
FREE LONDON SHOOT WITH EVELINA RA PHOTOGRAPHY
Simply add a cheeky LIKE to AllMumsTalk and Evelina Ra Photography‘s Facebook pages and let us know you did it by adding a comment in the comments box below to keep track of all entries. The winner will be announced by 15th of July and / she will be entitled to a professional photoshoot in London. Good luck and get your friends and family on board for more chances to get yourself in front of her magic-making camera…