Life’s Simple Pleasures – What Are Yours?

Researchers at One Poll, polled 6,000 adults in UK, US, Singapore, and Australia to determine all the little things that bring joy. The researchers came up with a list of the top 50 responses for each country; here are the top 10, by country.

UK Top 50 Simple Pleasures

1. Feeling of sun on your face
2. Sleeping in a freshly made bed
3. Stunning views
4. Waking up to sun
5. A nice dinner
6. Being in the countryside
7. Seeing flowers and trees blossom
8. Listening to your favourite songs
9. Making someone smile or laugh
10. Long walks

USA Top 50 Simple Pleasures

1. Listening to your favorite songs
2. A nice dinner
3. Watching your favorite movie
4. Finishing a really good book
5. Doing exercise
6. Spotting a species of bird you’ve never seen before
7. Seeing flowers and trees blossom
8. Wearing an outfit that makes you feel good
9. Home cooking
10. A match on Hinge (or other dating site) with someone you’re attracted to

Australia Top 50 Simple Pleasures

1. Listening to your favourite songs
2. Sleeping in a freshly made bed
3. Making someone smile or laugh
4. A nice dinner
5. Payday
6. Sleeping in a big incredibly comfy bed
7. Sound of rain on the window
8. Stunning views
9. Watching your favourite movie
10. Going to the beach

Singapore Top 50 Simple Pleasures

1. A nice dinner
2. Listening to your favourite songs
3. Payday
4. Watching your favourite movie
5. Dining out
6. Making someone smile or laugh
7. Staying in bed on a Sunday morning
8. Sleeping in a big incredibly comfy bed
9. Spend a weekend away
10. Doing exercise

Only two simple pleasures made the top 10 in all four countries:

  • A nice dinner
  • Listening to your favourite songs

Despite the variety of things that give pleasure, the average American only enjoys eight moments of simple pleasure each week – about one a day. These experiences don’t stay around long either, as the satisfaction of a moment’s pleasure lasts for about 20 minutes on average.

If I were to list my top ten (it’s hard to limit it to that many), I’d pick the following, in no particular order:

  • spending time with family
  • finishing a really good book
  • doing exercise
  • going to the beach
  • laughing
  • listening to music
  • a cup of coffee/pint of beer (depends on the time of the day)
  • traveling
  • warm weather
  • hitting the publish button on my blog

The research was commissioned by Small Luxury Hotels of the World; if you would like to see the full list of the top 50 for each of the four countries, here is the link.

117 thoughts on “Life’s Simple Pleasures – What Are Yours?

  1. Not in any order;
    -Seeing my cats feeling safe/content enough to sleep.
    -Cat purring
    -Hyper puppies
    -Being in water
    -Sunbathing right after swimming
    -Helping out a person or charity
    -Making people laugh

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I think one of my favorite simple pleasures is to bash so-called experts and their dumb studies. How do these idiots really know that we only experience 8 moments of pleasure per week? And who held the timer, while timing how long the pleasure lasts? And did the participants in this study signal something to those conducting the study, something like, “Wait a second, uh, wait, now, uh, YEAH, I’m feeling a moment of pleasure! Write that down and start the timer.”? And then, 20 minutes later, did they say, “Oh, ugh, the pleasurable feeling just left. Damn!”?

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Darn, sorry about that. I’ve read that scientists love nothing better than to bash the research results of other scientists. Not out of jealousy, but out of the fact that any research must withstand a gauntlet of intense scrutiny and skepticism before it can be trusted. I like the idea of lay people doing the same, rather than blindly trusting every research result that comes out of the scientific world, just because it’s “science.”

        Liked by 1 person

      2. it seems like several people were questioning this research; I guess I should have read the details of the study before I post. But I’m just excited when I come up with an idea to write about that I don’t think much beyond that 🙂

        and I always enjoy your skepticism; it’s one of my daily pleasures 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The post did give me something to think about, in spite of the fact that you claim you didn’t put much thinking into it. But after thinking, I just don’t agree with it. I think people get 10 moments of pleasure per day, and not 8.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Love simple pleasures! What would some of mine be? I can’t rate them for it depends upon the day. I agree with yours except for exercise and beer. LOL!
    1. Being with family, but also being alone!
    2. Writing
    3. Reading
    4. Being in nature….at the beach!
    5. Making people smile and laughing
    6. Massages
    7. Making my taste buds happy.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I didn’t make a list, but almost all of your things would be on my list too. I also had the same reaction that some others did to the eight moments stat. 1. I question how they would measure this. 2. It sounds too low to be true. If that is the actual number, then that is a pretty startling and sad figure.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I agree with some of the commenters, in that joy is hard to quantify and how long it lasts just as difficult to ascertain. I thought about making a list, but picking one “joy” over so many others turned out to be too difficult. That being said, somewhere on any list I would make would be time with family and friends. Other than still being alive, they are what give me the greatest joy!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. It’s great to see that we can get pleasure from a variety of things in a variety of ways. Looking at the lists makes me think people were given items to choose from rather than simply stating what they thought. I wonder how different a result that would bring.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. So I am left wondering what a Canadian list might look like. Maybe this:
    Watch the hockey game
    Bacon for breakfast
    Drinking Canadian beer
    Bacon bits on a Caesar for lunch
    Enjoying the great outdoors
    Taking your kids to hockey
    Bacon on your burger for dinner.
    Of course most of this doesn’t work for me because I don’t like hockey, beer or bacon. OMG I may have to move…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I never thought about Canadian’s love for bacon, even though there is Canadian bacon!

      But I am sure there is a place for you in Canada – perhaps you can be the designated driver for taking people home who have consumed too much beer while watching a hockey game 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. This sounds like people were given a list of things to tick rather than thinking for themselves, but I’m wondering if they omitted ‘mind-blowing sex’ from it, as I’d have thought it worth a mention. From my memory, of course…

    Good to see music chosen in all four countries, though I’m horrified it was only at #8 here. My work is definitely not done!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m guessing that, if this was a list given to respondents, that wasn’t included. If that’s right I think it invalidates the survey big time!

        I’m doing my best on getting the word out – a new post coming shortly…

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Strangely, two of my pleasures are going to bed AND waking up. Finishing a good book is always a source of anxiety for me–almost like the loss of a friend. Sometimes I’ll go a week without starting a new book because I’m not “over” the last one. The bed sheets thing is definitely on my list. You’d think I’d wash my sheets more often.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. yes, I also enjoy those first two that you list; maybe I take them too much for granted. And I was ready to change “finishing a good book” to “reading a good book” because of the point you make. But I guess I was too lazy to do so…

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Jim, it does look like people were given choices rather than picking their own thoughts which would disqualify the study from being very scientific since you would actually be leading people in a certain direction. However, it is kind of interesting, although that number of pleasures per week and how long they last is questionable too. I like simple pleasures more than what would be considered a huge pleasure. Sometimes I think that simple pleasures are remembered more and affect us more in a good way. I have written several posts listing some of my simple pleasures, though I don’t think I could put them in a numbered list because they are all so good. I need to do another post like that again soon, it’s been a while. Great post Jim, I enjoy when you bring in these studies.😀😺

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Steve, thanks for your insights and for checking on how the research was conducted. I agree that simple pleasures are quite enjoyable, since they are what get us through our day to day routines.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. It definitely is, a tick list and I agree with the comment if you live where it’s sunny it is a given…however, even though tropical storms are a given here they would be on my list as is kneading dough(amazing ) where the mind wanders while kneading dough…:) x

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Such an interesting list! Soon as I saw #1 for UK that made sense lol they don’t get a lot of sun I hear…

    My list in no particular order:
    Finish a really good book
    Hitting publish on my post (same as you)!
    Laughing with people I enjoy being around (friends, family, Husband, coworkers)
    The feeling I get after a hard workout
    Drinking really good coffee
    Walks/Sunshine
    Driving with music on
    Music
    Junk food lol (bc I’m real) 🤣

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Top simple pleasures:
    -road tripping on a sunny day to the country side while listening to my favorite songs
    -smell of freshly baked bread in the morning
    -rainy afternoon over a hot cup of coco

    Liked by 1 person

  14. this made me realise….n in a place to rethink about things that will give me pleasure…n tbh…the thought itself made me happy …n brought a gentle smile….this post will remind everyone..to discover themselves..to know themsleves…n learn more abt us…also…a moment for imagining the pleasure instead to planning for stress👍

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Interesting compilation! Here’s a quick draft in no particular order (let’s keep this assignment as easy as possible):
    Listening to music
    Writing poetry and short stories
    Visiting family
    Finishing the reading of a book
    Cooking (or do I just prepare food)
    Traveling
    Watching an older, classic film
    Seeing the ocean (again)
    Reading Borden’s Blather
    E

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Spending time with my family
    Sleeping on a well made comfy bed
    Pay day
    Nature gazing
    Listening to a really good music
    Trying out new recipes
    Dancing
    Writing
    Taking lovely photos
    Dressing up in unique outfits

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Far as I am (in Africa), as much as I find pleasure in enjoying fruits and vegetables as my snack, a day is not a day when not spent indoors, reading and writing something. I cannot put a halt to writing without having felt something for writing should come with a feeling (a feeling that’s obviously good) 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  18. What an absolutely delightful post 🥰
    Some of mine, no particular order:

    -Hot showers and baths
    -When a cat snuggles up on or next to me
    -The sound of cats purring
    -When a dog runs up to you with its tail wagging ridiculously fast and they sniff you like crazy
    -Spotting a bird, any bird at all
    -Birdsong, even the sound of Grackles screaming their hearts out at sunset (man I miss Texas…)
    -The way the light blankets everything in a warm glow in the early morning
    -The smell after it rains
    -The lumber smell in hardware stores (+the smell of lumber in general…)
    -When my partner does a chore I didn’t want to do!
    -The hands or paws of baby humans and animals (adult animals too though…!)
    -Feeling gratitude
    -Reading a good wholesome WordPress post!

    I feel so nice now after thinking of all these things 💕 I think even thinking about simple pleasures might be a simple pleasure for me.

    Liked by 1 person

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