A few months ago I wasn’t the happiest camper. I don’t always do well with unannounced change, but all of a sudden I found myself feeling abandoned and incredibly cynical (it wasn’t really that bad, I promise). As I kept meeting new people throughout those two weeks I kept apologizing for myself, “I swear I’m not usually this much of a bitch, I’m really sorry.” What was strange was that I always got the answer, “I don’t think you’re being a bitch” – even though to me it seemed like the scowl in my brain could be read on my face from a mile away. I was in such a funk that I wasn’t engaging in activities that I loved – like singing, or hosting parties, or calling my friends randomly throughout the week.
All of a sudden, things started to change. I found myself surrounded by people that were happy, ambitious, motivated, fun, and witty that didn’t judge and were willing to try new things. All of a sudden, my days started becoming more alive. What was originally a dreaded Monday morning flight finally started to feel like flying home again.
I talked about this concept briefly in a blog post that I wrote after visiting India about being in your element – whatever that means to you. For me it means bringing people together, trying new things, indulging my curiosity, constantly being creative, and finding ways to push myself to grow. And that’s what this group of people was able to provide for me – a chance to grow, and be creative, and laugh throughout my day.
Here’s what that looks like –
- Doing creative writing exercises during lunch
- Executing a suit and pocket square day in honor of one of our managers
- Eating a new places – trying pho and going to the food trucks
- Finding a running partner who is all about 1 mile at 7:15am
- Coloring postcards at lunch
- Talking about what best friends mean to you
- Constantly high-fiving a million angels (as seen on 30 Rock)
- Deciding that Thursday is going to be themed-music day and choosing a new word each week to listen to only songs that have that word in it on the way to lunch
- Creating rental car schedules where each person has their own avatar
- Playing ping pong on work nights, and
- Playing banagrams at the dinner table
Today we somehow managed to listen to songs that had the words mother, mom, mama, or ma in them on the entire ride from Baton Rouge to New Orleans. Some included – Knocking on Heaven’s Door (Dylan), Dear Mama (Tupac), Headlights (Eminem), Mama Who Bore Me (Spring Awakening), We Share Our Mother’s Health (The Knife), and The Mother We Share (Cherches). And that was just the first 20 minutes – we also hit Boyz ii Men, Queen, New Radicals, Cyndi Lauper, Metalica, Kanye, Beastie Boys, Faith Hill, Spice Girls, Carrie Underwood, Backstreet Boys, Three Dog Night, Iron & Wine, and Danzig.
And every one of these things adds a considerable amount of happiness to my day and goodness gracious I am grateful for it. I noticed a significant change in my own attitude when these things started happening – I was more open to trying new things, I was visibily happier throughout the day. I started singing again this past week. And I even have a plan for hosting brunch sometime in the near future.
What types of things get you through your days? Is there anything that you look forward to daily? Weekly? Any suggestions?