Playing the Day Away

photo

No matter how I’m feeling, there is always a piece of music to fit my mood. I feel very connected to music, it can calm me, excite me, or soothe me depending on what I need in the moment. I love to make my own music, but I haven’t done that consistently for a long time.

I inherited my Grandmother’s piano eight years ago and it’s been sitting quiet most of the time since then. It was the piano I learned on as a little girl and I’m happy to have it in my life. There have been days that I sit down and play all of my familiar tunes or a visiting friend tickles the ivories for a bit, but for the most part it remains a showpiece in my living room.

My daughters enjoy playing our piano too. I’ve started teaching them the basics and I hear them crafting their own tunes quite often. Piano lessons are imminent. I would love for my girls to connect to music the way I do.  Music is revitalizing and inspirational and can be a beautifully supportive tool.

As the seasons start to change, I see an opportunity to recharge, refresh and revitalize! I am reaffirming my commitment to kindness and self-care. I have to be healthy, strong and happy to make sure my kids are as well. And, I see the chance to make a new, exciting pledge to get back to making music, so I picked a new song and sat down in front of the piano and began to play. I’m planning to put more piano into my life as a way to soothe myself and be a good model for my girls. While they watch me learn a new song by reading the music and practicing, I’m hoping they will be attracted to the process. This time I chose a song that I can sing and play at the same time and I feel like that act will be a nice way to unwind and relax myself and the girls. Hopefully I can build a nice, new repertoire.

Finding happiness isn’t always about discovering something new, sometimes it’s about rediscovering what you already knew you had.

photo is of my Grandmother’s piano in my living room

Letting It Go

When I get up in the morning I know certain things need to get done, but I just can’t seem to get into a routine. Everything eventually gets accomplished and my daughters and I seem to leave the house with clothes on our backs and food in our bellies. My day turns into a series of hurried moments followed by hushed lulls in the action. I see most of the moments of chaos coming, yet I can’t always find a way to stay calm in the middle of all of it. I know it’s times like these that deplete me, but I also know there are things that need to get done. Avoiding these happenings is not an option. Changing how I handle myself is the only way to go.

I started to realize how many times I am in this type of situation these days….

Could this be the key? Is this what needs adjusting to make me happier? It’s possible. Definitely worth some attention. I have to concentrate on being mindful during these moments of chaos and stress and learn how to get through them without losing my cool. I have to clear these hurdles with my patience intact. I admit it, I need to learn to let things go.

Let things go….words that make me cringe. Such an easy fix. But how?

I need to disengage, loosen up and unbind, but not surrender. I need to let things float past me without judgement and continue on my way. Relinquish control and accept things for what they are. All of this is completely against not only my good judgement most of the time, but also my personality. But the truth is that holding on to all of this minutia is not serving me well. It’s not making me happy. To move forward on this journey I have to be willing to make changes. Some that I have never considered before. So, in the spirit of taking a giant leap toward my happy place, I am pledging to let things go. I’m going to loosen my grip and go with the flow. I think just making the decision to do this will serve me well and be the wind at my back.

Be The Owl

I talk too much and I wear my heart on my sleeve.  A dangerous combination that leads to vulnerability.  If I can stop blabbering and be a little less transparent, I may be able to take another step toward happiness.

Native Americans believe that animals have unique meaning and power.  An animal guide, or spirit animal, can appear to you in a dream or in the physical world.  Whether or not you believe in the power or presence of animals as guides, they still have many important lessons to teach.  Native Americans used animal traits to teach their children lessons the way we use fairy tales and myths.  They used the world around them and what was available in their surroundings to impart knowledge and wisdom.  Every culture uses this practice in some way, but something about this Native American tradition speaks to me.  I’ve always had much respect for the simple, natural way they view the world with respect and awe.

Eleven years ago, I was in a bit of a low valley of my life and during a trip to Arizona to visit friends and regroup I stepped outside to enjoy the warm night air.  As I sat and let my mind wander in search of answers, I looked up and saw an owl.  We stared at each other for a long time.  In that time, my mind was quiet for what felt like the first time.  You never know where comfort and peace will come from, but being able to recognize those moments and draw from them is important.  Enlightening moments will not always show themselves as obvious as an owl looking down on you in the midst of a troubled time, so I need to learn to pay more attention even during the chaos in which I exist at times.

Since that night in Arizona, I believe that the owl had something to teach me.  Whether I was meant to have that chance encounter or I read too much into it, I drew knowledge and wisdom from that moment:  I need to be more like that owl.  I need to quiet my mouth to quiet my mind.  I need to learn to take in more and disclose less.

The truth is, that moment happened over a decade ago and I have still not been able to translate that insight into my life.  I’ve often gone back to that night in my mind, but haven’t known how to apply it.  As part of my happy promise, I pledge to unearth the premise that being more owl-like will lead to more happiness.

myhappypromise

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