“Whatever lifts the corners of your mouth, trust that”
The journey to being your best you is not about what you 'should’ be doing. It's about pursuing the things that bring you joy.
It's no accident that these words are plastered across the Acorn’s home page. What the heck, you say: everyone knows that nutrition and physical activity are THE fundamental precepts to well being. This is absolutely true. But what I’ve found, after twenty years of researching the the hows and whys of health, of who gets sick and who stays well, is that happiness is the glue that holds it all together.
Joyful living, in a nutshell, is what makes for wellness. And let’s face it: a joyful life makes living that much more pleasant.
Not that life always works out exactly as you plan it, of course....
The Bumps in the Road
This year, my quest for awesome led me on a roller coaster ride of highs and lows. The good times were fantastic, of course. Who wouldn’t wish for a never-ending stream of great experiences, engaging interactions, and positive people? Unfortunately, as most of us know, life doesn’t always cooperate.
Some lows are lobbed at you by the universe. In this case, you can only make the best of it: brush yourself off, have a good cry, and move on. Believe me, this statement is not meant to minimize what the universe can lob. Sometimes it’s a garden-variety bad day and sometimes it’s a tsunami. Good friends can help us weather the storm, as do family, community, a sense of purpose, and good old-fashioned optimism. (Did I mention chocolate? Chocolate helps too).
Other lows, however, stem directly from the choices we make. This is where our greatest opportunities for learning take place. We can make a decision to repeat these choices, or we can learn from them, correct course, and go back to the mantra: seek out the people, activities and experiences that make you happy.
The Attitude of Gratitude
Incredibly, we can also choose our lens on the ever-shifting sands of that thing called life. Attitude has more to do with joyful living than anything else. There will always be good times and bad times, but how we approach the bumps in the road is directly equivalent to the quality of the journey as a whole.
As it turns out, rose coloured glasses aren't such a bad idea after all. In study after study, those who experience long and healthy lives are found to share common traits: optimism, adaptability and gratitude (check out this great short video on three ageing all-stars).
And so, in 2019 I plan to continue my Quest for Awesome: fresh ideas, inspiring people, fabulous food, and things that make you go ‘hmm'. I hope you’ll join me on this crusade to find the gems out there. I don’t doubt there will once again be highs and lows along the way. But I will do my utmost to remember that the lows are opportunities for growth, and to remember that they will pass.
Here’s to a New Year full of fabulous possibility, one in which YOU pursue your bliss.