Welcome back to the blog!
I started this week by reading the third chapter of what’s becoming my favorite book, Joyful by Ingrid Fetell Lee. In this chapter, Lee discusses the concept of abundance. Early humans were highly focused on survival, meaning that when they came across a large amount of food or water, it was evolutionarily advantageous to grab all of it. It has been theorized that as a result, we are evolutionarily wired to appreciate an abundance of any item that brings us survival or happiness. Lee asks us to picture a ‘kid in a candy shop’ and the feeling of sheer joy during that experience. We are happiest when there seems to be no limit to items that bring us joy. As such, things like a stack of cotton candy or a game of pick-up-sticks may elicit happiness. Lee clarifies this point, however; an overabundance of things (think a large landfill or the law of diminishing marginal returns) can reduce that same joy.
Next, the author touches upon the aesthetics of abundance. Abundance is all about waking up our senses to the plethora of feelings, sights, and sounds of the world. She discusses the current trend of minimalism and how that is antithetical to how we are evolutionarily wired to survive. Instead, Lee advocates for the ‘Marie Kondo Approach,’ based off the book Marie Kondo wrote. Kondo suggest a 5-step approach for creating a home that ‘sparks joy.’ All of those steps involve the removal of objects that don’t elicit happiness to create a cleaner home. This is different from minimalism; rather than removing almost everything in an attempt to create peace, Kondo’s approach allows for the removal of clutter so that the objects that create real joy can be appreciated. Go Marie Kondo!
Finally, I spent a bunch of time painting the 27×32 boards that will be used in my mural (pictures below!). Painting by hand is A LOT harder than it looks. I ran into a few issues, including sticky newspaper, slow drying, and a very sore hand. The base coat is now complete.
Thanks for reading – go spark some joy!