health, Mindfulness

The Art of Mindfulness: Fifty Good Things

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Some days are just assholes.

You can’t seem to find your focus, everything is going tits up, and on the whole it feels like life is getting away from you slightly.  It’s at times like this that the List of Fifty comes into its own.


First of all, some context; the List of Fifty is a journaling technique I read about years ago; I couldn’t tell you where. The point is it stuck with me. The idea is this; say you’re completely out of good ideas for your blog, or your dissertation, or whatever it may be. You get a piece of paper, number it 1-50, and then you write down fifty ideas, all in one sitting. The theory goes that the first 15-20 ideas are the stuff that was floating around at the top of your consciousness; the mid section is a bit crap as you start running out of ideas, and then the final section is where the magic happens. It’s actually really hard to write 50 of anything, and that’s why this technique works, for me at least.

This is what I do when I’m feeling sad. I write a list entitled “50 Things that are Good” and I make myself fill it out. So without further ado, here is my list for today:

  1. Flavored coffee
  2. Rainy days spent indoors
  3. Fancy manicures
  4. A good cup of Earl Grey
  5. Having a job that pays the bills
  6. Having friends that live close by
  7. Saying goodbye to stale obligations
  8. Quest bars
  9. Morning porridge
  10. Running in the morning
  11. Running after work
  12. New compression socks
  13. Having financial stability
  14. Writing my blog
  15. The people I’ve come to know through my blog
  16. Crumpets with butter
  17. My cats
  18. My family
  19. My family’s new puppy
  20. My iPhone
  21. Homemade egg fried rice
  22. Scented candles
  23. Duvet days
  24. Sheepskin slippers
  25. Getting flowers from friends
  26. Giving flowers to friends
  27. Writing to my grandmothers
  28. Splurging on small luxuries
  29. Hot chocolate
  30. Cuddles from my friends
  31. Netflix
  32. Having friends I can do nothing with
  33. Yoga
  34. Hot yoga
  35. Having a body that is capable of things like running and yoga
  36. 10K races
  37. Personal bests
  38. Race medals
  39. Running with my club
  40. Meeting new people
  41. Curry
  42. Living in London
  43. Breakfast for dinner
  44. Trying new foods
  45. Trying new experiences
  46. Having friends all over the world
  47. My health
  48. Wearing tops that show off my abs
  49. Fresh sheets
  50. Warm towels.

And there you have it. This list is completely uncensored and unedited. I wrote it in one sitting, and I immediately feel a little lighter (not that I was particularly sad to begin with). I keep lists like this in my notebook, and they’re lovely to look back on when I’m having a rough day. The toughest thing is to make yourself write them when you are actually having a bad day, but finding 50 good things in the world does make you feel a little better.

So tell me, what would one of your 50 things be?

Lots of love



14 thoughts on “The Art of Mindfulness: Fifty Good Things”

    1. I’m glad you liked it! It’s definitely one to try on a rainy day. I find my items on the list go from the deep and meaningful (Saying goodbye to stale obligations) to the superficial (Netflix) very quickly! But that’s kind of what it’s all about- just finding some good in the day 🙂


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