How to feel good for a minute

I was listening to an inspirational tape the other day and the following words stuck with me: “My predominant work in this day is to figure out how to feel good for a minute.”

Later in the day I was reading a copy of O (yes, I’ll admit that I sometimes do read O) and Martha Beck’s column rang true to me. She stresses our need to live life with purpose – to do only those things that are appealing and pleasing, and if something’s not appealing or pleasing, to bag it (don’t do it or don’t do it now), barter it (find someone else who would like to do it and trade), or better it (find a way to make it enjoyable – like listening to music at the same time). And then she suggests we make sure we make time each day, and today in particular, for not just the Important Things in our life, but also, or even mainly, for the simple things that bring us joy. That life is too short to not have time to read a good book, or talk with a friend, or pet your cat, or watch a TV show (Dr. Who anyone?)…whatever makes you smile.

I think the universe is telling me something. It’s finding numerous ways to catch my attention and remind me. I’ve realized for a while that I need to slow down. To stop pushing. To pause. And now I’m being (happily) reminded that I need to smell the roses along my way. To look for, and find, reasons to feel good. To enjoy the things I enjoy and to go out of my way to enjoy them.

Nearly every morning I make a list of the things I appreciate. Needless to say, my family is usually at the top of that list. And then the list goes on – from the larger than life things like the fact that the sun comes up every morning and, as I was saying to a friend yesterday, life always looks better in the morning, to the smaller things like a good night’s sleep or my oat bran muffins or the warmth of a tea cup in my hands.

If I spend my energy each day figuring out how to feel good for a minute, doing the things that are appealing and pleasing to me (or making the unappealing and not pleasing things more appealing and more pleasing), and making time for my simple pleasures, I’m much more likely to have a good day. That’s appealing to me. I’m going to try.

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