Daylight in the mind
“Cheerfulness keeps up a kind of daylight in the mind, and fills it with a steady and perpetual serenity.” — Joseph Addison
Have you ever had one of those days when you felt angry at the world? Maybe even for no particular reason? It’s awful to be caught in that cycle of negativity that seems to just spiral down, down, down. At such times, perhaps a bit of forced cheerfulness would help.
Easier said than done, of course, but at least there are plenty of ways to deliberately elevate the mood. Unfortunately, we sometimes choose the wrong refuge when we feel out of sorts. I think it’s wise to make some premeditated decisions about how to handle– or NOT handle– your next episode of doom, gloom, or discontent.
Bad idea: collapse in front of the TV and zone out on whatever it sends your way: noisy commercials, depressing re-runs, or overly dramatized “tragic news!”
Good idea: choose a funny video to watch, do a word search for “hilarious pet videos” on YouTube, or look at some of the happiest photos you can find.
Bad idea: consume an entire bag of chips, box of donuts, or carton of ice cream (eating directly out of the container, of course)
Good idea: savor a cup of coffee or tea, a piece of fruit, or a single really delicious piece of chocolate
Bad idea: complain, procrastinate, and generally wallow in the muddy mire of your worst circumstances
Good idea: take a walk with some energetic tunes on your portable player, dance to some funky music, or tackle a project you’ve been avoiding and promise yourself a reward when you finish – then DO it!
If it’s a dark and stormy night in your mind, remember that you have the power to switch on the daylight. It may feel awkward and fake at first, but chances are you really will end up in a happier place than when you started. Send me a smile!