The other day I woke up in London and decided to take a walk to the Whole Foods in Piccadilly to get some green smoothies. I put my iPod on shuffle and took a morning walk down the cobblestone streets. As soon as I stepped out the door, the normal everyday thoughts started popping into my head – I’m tired…I think I ate too much sugar yesterday…he hasn’t written back to my email yet…what’s going to happen when I get back to NYC…I haven’t bought ___ a gift yet…I haven’t been spending enough time working on my blog…It’s raining again…etc – etc – etc. Those thoughts started to give me a low level feeling of anxiety and dissatisfaction, like there’s always more to be done and things are never good enough. Can you relate?
Just as I was going through my list of things that needed “fixing,” a song came onto my iPod that made me stop in my tracks. “Good Life” by OneRepublic started blasting into my ears. And get this-
The first line of the song is “Woke up in London yesterday, found myself in the city near Piccadilly…” As that line played, I looked up and saw a sign reading “Piccadilly.” WHAT! I knew I was supposed to pay attention to this song’s message for me, and it changed my entire day. My entire week, even.
I couldn’t ignore the lyrics of the song.
“This has gotta be a good life
This could really be a good life, a good good life”
Over and over. A good, good life.
“We’ve all got our stories, but please tell me what there is to complain about.”
All of a sudden, I thought, what the hell! I’m an ass. I’m exploring a beautiful new city, listening to music, walking down the street to get smoothies for me and one of my best friends who brought me on this trip with her. This is a freaking GOOD GOOD LIFE. From that moment, instead of running down my list of things in my head that weren’t perfect, I started thinking of all the things I’m grateful for and that I appreciate. I have more than enough food and water and shelter. I have the money to go buy breakfast. I have people in my life who I love. I have the opportunity to travel. The list goes on. The more I thought about these wonderful things, the more uplifted my mood became – and the more I felt present in the moment, blessed and lucky. This was a totally different feeling than I started out with, and all it took was a mental gratitude list.
All the things I was worrying about are luxury problems. I mean, of course, terrible things happen and I’m not trying to belittle anyone’s pain, suffering, anxiety, heartbreak or depression. There is a time for being upset, taking action on things that aren’t working, fixing things, grieving, being frustrated, angry, etc. Believe me, I get it.
BUT – what I do know is that most of us spend a lot of our time way too anxious and worried about little things – luxury problems (many that we have no control over whatsoever) instead of finding joy and pleasure in the moment, appreciating the incredible blessings we have in this life.
If you’re able to read this blog on a computer, iPad, phone, whatever — that means you’re blessed too, and you probably have a lot to be grateful for. You’re ALIVE and you can choose to enjoy life. Make a list now of all the things you appreciate in your life, all the things that maybe you take for granted on a daily basis. Feel your mood rise immediately. Then share that goodness. Smile. Give someone a compliment. Forgive someone. Let something go. Appreciate YOURSELF and all the awesome things about you. The more you think about these high vibe things, the bigger your positive mood will become. This is a practice that definitely takes repetition, but it’s so so worth it.
Listen to the song:
Can you relate to this? What are you grateful for today? I’d love to hear. xo