There’s been a collective vibe of ‘mehness’ floating around lately. I think many of us have been feeling it in some form or another, so imagine my delight when an exercise in a book I’m reading gave me pause to realise just how much I have to be grateful for.
The book is The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron, and the exercise asked me to list twenty things I enjoy doing and the date I last did them. The general premise was to identify something you love but haven’t done for a while, then do it.
Imagine my surprise when out of the twenty things I listed, most are activities that are already party of my regular life. This felt like a revelation! On a background level I’m aware I have a hell of a lot to be grateful for, but this exercise really brought home how much I’m already living my best life, I just need to take the time to appreciate it a bit more often.
It’s always been the little things that light me up, and I know this, but as with many of the things that make us feel good, it seems I always need reminding at least one more time.
Follow the light trail
With the meh lifted I had an urge to explore new ideas, which led to me to TikTok (no judgement please), and Tik Tok introduced me to a song that froze me in place, hairs standing up on the back of my neck, tears welling up behind my eyes. In my list of twenty things, I’d forgotten about the simple act of discovering new music. I haven’t been paying much attention to music lately in my consumption of books, podcasts and social media and whilst live music had made it onto my list of twenty things I’d neglected the simple joy of discovering new songs.
It’s been a while since a song sparked such emotion in me, but this was just the beginning. Realising my body was telling me I needed a good cry, I set to work making a playlist to do just that, filling it with songs connected to important moments in my life. Then I cranked up the volume and spent all afternoon cleaning the house and wailing along at the top of my lungs. This is something I used to do regularly, but we’ve had builders in almost daily for the past couple of years (as much as I’ve grown in self-acceptance, subjecting someone who isn’t blood related to the sound of my singing is a line I can’t cross), and I hadn’t realised how much I’ve missed the simple combination of music and movement. Yesterday it was just me, my tunes and the mop, and I made the most of it.
The lines in one of the songs that made it onto my playlist seemed written for the way I’ve been feeling lately. Don’t you just love that about art? Sometimes you can see, hear, or read something that resonates so deeply, it’s like the artist has reached into your soul to put into notes or words or pictures everything you feel, but up until that moment couldn’t quite make sense of. It’s a magical connection.
All it takes is a little bit of awe at the world around us to bring us back to the present moment and remind us just how bloody magical this life can be, if we let it.
What have you been forgetting lately that lights you up and brings you back to yourself?
By the way, if anyone is wondering what the TikTok song that made me FEEL is called, it’s The Wisp Sings by Winter Aid, it’s perfectly haunting and I can’t get it out of my head!
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