Thursday, January 5, 2012

Ideas for staying young

I've decided to make a list of things that I think would make the world a better place. Maybe not the world... but they are things that make me happy, and they're things that I wish I did more often, and they're things that I think everyone should do more often, just because they're healthy things (I think)... but mostly they're things that I wish I did more often, so I'm writing them down. This is just my list. My silly fun list. My occasionally serious list. My list that may or may not make someone else happy, but I just felt like putting it here.
Enjoy =)

Joy's possibly senseless tips for staying young at heart:

1) Meditate.
     For me, this means pray. Lately, I've taken to writing 3 pages a day. 3 "morning pages," they're called. (This concept comes from The Artist's Way, a book on creativity by Julia Cameron.) Set aside a half hour a day for yourself. Use the time to reflect, pray, think, draw, breath, say what you need to say... whatever. And take time to recognize that there are at least some things worth reading. Search for truth, and search for wisdom every day.

2) Drink 64 ounces of water.
    This is recommended by actual people who know actual things... not just me! And... my, it feels good to drink that much water in a day. Really it does. (Just not all at once... that hurts.)

3) Turn on the radio... or turn it off.
     I used to listen to too much music, I think. It was more like a habit than a conscious activity. Now, I don't listen to enough. Maybe this is more about balance for me. Find balance. Take time to enjoy things... and then maybe think about why you enjoy them. 

4) When you turn on the radio, dance around your room like a crazy person.
     You know you've done it, and you know it's fun, and you know you should do it more often... and if you haven't done it (that's a really big if) then just start doing it because you're missing out.  

5) Make that really tough choice that you know is the right choice.
    The peace that comes afterwards is much greater than the pain/struggle that is around while you're in the midst of your choice-making... really. It's so worth it to know you've done the right thing.

6) Ask for help, advice, whatever. Tell your friends and family about your goals.
     You're not in it alone, even if you think you are. Stop believing in solitude. Stop saying, "no one understands me... wahhhh." It's time to get over the teenage angst.

7) Read a Proverb a day.
     In the Bible, the book of Proverbs has 31 chapters. 1 book for every month. This wonderful, life-changing, soul-grabbing fact was introduced to me by my pastor, Tootie Wright. Honestly... read something wise every day.

8) Wear a bright color.
    I hide in my clothes. It's true. I was looking at my closet the other day, and I thought... "everything's gray." I don't like to be the center of attention and for some reason, I guess I've always feared that bright colors, or a really cute outfit would do that. Well, I don't think it does. Take a risk. Wear the bright shirt. Dress up on a Thursday. Curl your hair. Who cares! Let yourself feel beautiful, or edgy, or whatever. 

9) Care more about others.
    This probably should have been No. 2, but oh well. Seriously, care about others. Our lives are so deeply connected. I'm astonished at how much we affect each other, just by living. So, think about others. Think about how your life affects their lives and think about what's best for everyone. I think this, above all else, motivates me to live better: the fact that what I do can make a difference to others.

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