Sometimes it's just the simplest things: a walk down the autumn-breezy streets to look at the trees turning gold and orange and red. Or skip the walk, and stand trunk-to-trunk with an oak or a maple and look at those flame reds and myth golds and the veins in the leaves and the way the arms of the tree look like someone primping their hair.
This is something that I like to do. But more importantly:
What do you like to do?
Are you doing enough of it?
Sometimes when we're feeling anxious or sad or stuck or unmotivated, we give up on ourselves a bit. This means dropping the interests, activities, allegiances and engagements that make life worth living.
Write a list of the things you like to do. For example:
- Go to the musuem
- Go to a concert
- Take a road trip
- Go somewhere new and exotic
- Redecorate your living space
- Train for a sports event with friends
- Get together with friends
- Cook a new meal
- Bring people together
- Binge watch a really good TV series
- Sit outside in the sun
- Make someone laugh
- Sit in a coffee shop and watch people
- Write letters to friends (on real note cards!)
- Walk your dog
- Laugh with mate
- Go to the movies
- Catch up with a friend you haven't talked to in a while
- Play with kids
- Take a class
- Read on the sofa with a bag of candy on a Sunday afternoon
Now, write your list. Look at all the opportunity for feeling good. Pick three to five that are the easiest to do. Then schedule them. Put them right in your calendar. See if you can do one today.
When the world is going through a hard time, you don't have to put on the hair shirt and take a swim in the suffer steam as well. Trust your compassion and caring. Then, be good to yourself, make someone laugh, expose yourself to art. Do more of what you like.
I was in L.A. recently for a conference and went to Venice Beach. I love the beach, love love LOVE it. Walking up and down the shoreline watching everyone play in the ocean and throw frisbees and chase their kids, squeal with delight, be scolded by the lifeguard for swimming in the surfing section, licking ice cream cones off the sides of their hands--well good god it just made me love the river of humanity and the beautiful world we live in. Because it is. (And sometimes, one forgets.)
This month is dedicated to Feeling Better in a Troubled World: Simple ways you can catch a breath and remember a bit of beauty when the news is getting you down. If you want to talk more about feeling better in troubled times, email me for a conversation at firstname.lastname@example.org . There's no need to feel alone! XO