Thursday, August 30, 2012

Take a Sad Song and Make it Better

Lately I've been learning all sorts of fun tricks  in my Martha Beck class for dealing with life's hurdles, and although I've passed on the wisdom to several friends, I hadn't really been putting it to work in my own life until this week. One of the simplest techniques I've learned for turning painful tasks into slightly more benign—even fun—endeavors is brainstorming ways to BETTER them.

For example, when some of the clutter around my makeshift desk area was bugging me a few weeks ago, I decided to better my space by reorganizing it and adding a lovely bright orchid into my line of sight.

I cannot tell you what an impact that one little flower pot has had.

Surrounding ourselves with things we find beautiful is great way to elevate our moods. 

This week, I was feeling less than excited about a project I had to tackle for work, so I decided to run through my "bettering brainstorm list" and try to find something that would make it more enjoyable. I opted to listen to some fun, funky, ambient music on iTunes while I wrote.

That music made all the difference. 

A couple of times, I was literally dancing in my chair—a far cry from the hunched, tight-shouldered posture I often assume while I'm working.

I think music might be the single easiest way to improve an un-fun situation. 

Maybe it's not the same for everyone, but having an upbeat tempo to move to totally gave me a boost. Music can also take you out of your head a bit and ground you in the present moment. I've found that going to concerts for my favorite bands often feels like a spiritual experience. Church a la Coldplay or U2.

Another great way to better a situation you're not so excited about? Give yourself a reward when it's over. 

The rewards of choice around these parts are wine and chocolate. And man can they be motivating!

What things would you incorporate into your daily activities if you wanted to better them?

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