Superdress

See this dress?20181015_0749598299606371136416558.jpg

This plain, non descript dress? Well, to me, it is anything but a plain, non descript dress.  to me, this is Superdress, my equivalent to a flowing cape.  When I wear this dress I feel like I can take on the world. Needless to say, I’ve worn this dress a lot lately.

This is my Holly Golightly attire.  I wore this to curriculum night with flats and a long cardigan.  It strolled around Chelsea galleries with a cord jacket and a big scarf.  It took me to dinner at a funky restaurant with a big silver necklace and a black moto jacket. It is quite literally my perfect dress.

What is it about this particular dress, which didn’t cost much?  Maybe because it was relatively inexpensive.  Maybe because it’s not too loose to be dowdy, not too tight to be uncomfortable or showy. Is it that it’s easy to dress up or down? The perfect backdrop for accessories? Does it matter?

I think everyone needs a piece of clothing like this is their wardrobe, an article that just makes them feel better when they put it on. Sometimes life is crazy or unpredictable, and it’s nice to have something that’s just easy- something that doesn’t require thought.  When your insides are churning, it’s satisfying to go into your closet and breathe a sigh of relief- you don’t have to stress about what you’re going to wear, you just pull out that trusty garment that sort of says it all…

Sometimes, appearance does matter.  To you.  If you think you look great, it’s going to positively affect your mood.  If an outfit feels great on your body, it’s going to make you feel better.  Sometimes the wrapping is important….

And yes.  I’m probably pulling this dress out today (knee high boots and a pink leather moto jacket) And yes, I will instantly feel like I can take on the world….

Find your dress. Or denim jacket. Cowboy boots. Whatever.  Find that one article of apparel that helps you kick ass.  We all need a little boost every now and then.

 

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I ______________ That

When faced with the title sentence, which word do you normally use:

  1. Like
  2. Love
  3. Am indifferent to
  4. Hate

Seriously, think about how often you phrase something like this, how often you make a bold declarative statement, and if you use of the above words more than the others.

Are you thinking?

Let’s start with like.  I know we all “like” things.  I expect a bunch of you to “like” this post…we write so that others read our words, and get some sort of feeling about what we have written.  But I don’t mean social media likes.  I mean, how often do you utter the words “I like _________”?

I’m going to give you some examples:

I like using cloth napkins when I’m eating.  I think they cover my lap better, are softer when I wipe my mouth, and are better for the environment because I don’t throw them away.  I like cloth napkins.

Love.  How often do you use the word love in a day?  5 times?  50 times?  None?  I tell my daughter that I love her every morning when she walks out the door.  I love hot tea with milk and sugar.  Count your loves.

Am Indifferent to.  I rarely use these exact words on a daily basis, but there are things I have absolutely no opinion on.  Coke or pepsi?  Doesn’t matter.  Are there things around you that you don’t care enough about to form an opinion?

Hate.  How often do you use the word hate?  I hated that book.  I hate that movie.  I hate _______.  Seriously, how often do you use the word, or think the word every day?  How many things do you feel so strongly about that you use the word hate?

Take five minutes.  Tabulate your results.

How many times did you use each word?  Is there anything that stands out?  Have you used one word more than another?  Does anyone have Hate leading the pack?

We all hate things.  We all are allowed to hate things.  I hate anchovies- really can’t stand them. And that’s fine.  Hating something is fine.

But do you hate more than you love, like or are indifferent to?

Now, before you get crazy, I’m not advocating becoming “Susie Sunshine”, or “Polyanna”.  I’m not handing out rose colored glasses, or handing anyone a bucket of sand.  I just want you to think about what words are filling your thoughts, dreams, prayers and your time.  I want you to think about what words are making up your life.  If the majority of your words are words of hate, how do you think you are going to feel inside?

Try to have a balance of those four basic ideas as you are going about your day.  If you find yourself constantly repeating the same thought, try thinking again.  If you write a post about something that makes you mad, or that you hate, try to balance out the next post by writing about something you like.  Or, as a spin, write about how to fix the problem of the thing you hate or that makes you mad.  There are negative things in life: how do you make them into a positive.

Are we clear on this weeks homework?  First, we analyze how often we use these words.  Then we figure out how to balance our thoughts out.  I’m not aiming for positivity awards:  the goal is balance.

Whop wants to win the first “Balanced Thought Award”? (don’t get too excited- I don’t create memes…)

 

 

 

Accentuate the Positive

A few weeks ago I wrote about how it’s very easy for me to complain about bad customer service, but I never take the time to talk about good service.  That day I sent a note to Staples commending two of their employees.  It felt good, and hopefully those two employees got a nice little note in their employee files. The incident made me think of a larger issue: why are we so quick to accentuate the negative instead of the positive?

I try to do a gratitude exercise every day, but I admit, when I sit down at night and brain dump, the negative things about my day usually pop into my head first.  I think about the irritating employee at the bakery, the guy who bumped into me spilling coffee on my favorite black converse, the fact that someone had already grabbed the “good” elliptical at the gym.  When I think back on my day bad overshadows good by a wide margin.  It often takes me awhile to think of a good moment, and I lead a relatively charmed life.  My days are normally filled with way more ups than downs.  Why don’t I remember the good as well as I remember the bad?

Am I hardwired to think that if something isn’t “perfect” then it is bad?  Do societal pressures make me feel that every moment of my life should be fairytale like, so that when something disrupts the fairytale I remember it?

Have I overthought this topic?

Well, yes and no.

I think in order to live a fulfilling life, one must find the good that is out there, find the positive that exists.  I don’t think a fulfilled life is one that is filled with riches or fame or any of those other grandiose things.  I think true fulfillment lies on the back of the small moments, and accepting that these small moments of joy carry a great deal of impact.  Finding joy in your morning cup of coffee, or a pleasant exchange with a stranger can bring you happiness every day.  We need to recognize this and nourish it.

Psychologically I don’t know why we harp on negative and eschew positive, but I know we do.  But, I think it’s possible to change out mindset.  It just requires work.  I think the effort will be rewarded.

I know some people are scared of happy.  I know some people don’t trust those that exude positivity and happiness.  Isn’t that sad?  When did happy become a thing to be mocked?  When did contentment become a joke?

I’m giving you homework tonight.  At the end of the evening, go back and reflect on your day.  Write the highs and the lows.  But the number of highs must equal the number of lows, or exceed them.  Some people might find it easy to do this: others will not.  But I think it’s worth a try.  Don’t you?