“We live in interesting times”, Big Issue Editor Paul McNamee wrote ahead of this week’s magazine celebrating all the active things that people are doing to have a positive effect in their community.
In uncertain times it is hard to remain positive about the future of Britain. But while the geopolitical situation escalates, focusing on good things closer to home could be the key to unlocking your optimism.
The immediate aftermath of Brexit took its toll on the country with markets collapsing and sterling falling to record lows. We can expect more of that in the short to medium-term, but there has also been a cohesive effort to mitigate the fallout.
A Progressive Alliance that would see Labour, SNP, Lib Dem, Green, Plaid Cymru, Sinn Féin and other parties agreeing not to contest each other in constituencies has been debated to fight the poisonous Conservative-UKIP definition of Brexitopia, offering a collective political response from the major parties.
Acts of thuggish xenaphobia have been frequently reported, but also frequently counteracted with gestures of kindness. Heck, even the banks have united to call for national effort to meet economic challenges.
But if you want real optimism, look closer to home.
A new study by Spirini has unveiled the top 50 little things that make us happy. According to the research, getting asked for ID even though you’re clearly old enough to drink and finding a tenner in your pocket are among life’s happiest moments, along with getting a good deal when shopping and getting into a bed with fresh sheets.
With all the gloom dominating the news agenda, sometimes its worth reminding ourselves of the little things. And we have a big old list of them:
The Top 50 Little Things That Make Us Happy
Getting a bargain
Getting into a bed with freshly ironed sheets
Seeing the sunshine
Finding a forgotten tenner in your pocket
Being told you’ve lost weight
Funny animal videos
Someone telling you that you look nice
Seeing a baby’s smile
Smell of freshly cut grass
Seeing an old couple holding hands
When daffodils come into bloom
A lie in
When your favourite song comes on the radio
The smell of bacon
Having a good hair day
Being surprised with flowers or chocolate
Someone thinking you’re younger than you actually are
A spontaneous hug/kiss/I love you from your kids
Waking up at the weekend (or Bank Holiday) and realising you don’t have to go to work
First coffee or tea of the morning
Home time after a day at work
Hearing one of your children has been super polite
Seeing your children win something
Being greeted by your dog
When a pen writes nicely
Perfectly toasted toast
Finding a really comfy bra
Seeing dogs stick their head out of car windows
Getting asked for ID even though you’re clearly old enough to drink
The lift arriving the second you push the button
When your cake rises
Catching your train in time
Getting some juicy gossip from a friend
Seeing people fall over
Finding a forgotten bottle of booze in the fridge/cupboard
Feeling particularly energetic at a sports class
Beating the traffic and speedily getting to work
Falling asleep in front of the TV
Getting new make-up/cosmetics
Sound of champagne corks popping
Pouring a perfect beer
Putting on a new pair of socks
Taking a nice selfie
Overtaking a smart Alec on the motorway
Seeing a celebrity you don’t like get caught out
Having just enough milk for a bowl of cereal
Managing to perfectly mow lines into your garden lawn
Peeling an apple in one long peel
Overtaking another runner when you’re out for a jog