Let’s talk about positivity for a moment. Most of us could use more of it. The atmosphere I face at work every day has been so negative that it has become a daily struggle to combat it with positive vibes. This may have perhaps led to an
unhealthy obsession with Life is Good® products. (Believe it or not, I’ve actually been growled at for wearing my Life is Good® sweatshirt by a coworker having a grumpy day, and clearly wanting to remain in a foul mood. Now we’ve all had those days, but I’d much prefer if someone tries to pull me out of a funk.)
I’ve also picked up the habit of exercising after work every day by doing an hour of Blogilates to release some of the stress. Of course it helps when your workout tanks remind you to spread “Good Vibes Only”.
And when all that doesn’t work a girl eventually results to pampering herself with a lovely shade of green and purple glitter nail polish. (You know things have reached problematic level when you look down at your polish bottle and find it is happily reminding you “Everything’s going to be fine!”)
When none of this works, what’s a librarian to do but break her no-more-buying-books,-your-to-be-read-pile-is-too-big rule… I broke down and bought Life is Good: How to Live with Purpose and Enjoy the Ride (Goodreads link)! I figured it was worth a shot. It turns out, this book is amazing. It’s a guidebook for living optimistically. It will teach you how to run your life and a business happily. Everyone should read it. I want to reread it and internalize all of it. I want to carry it around everywhere and refer to it when I’m not sure about a situation. It’s part story, part text book. I couldn’t put it down. It’s a quick read so there’s no reason not to read it! And then read it over again!
Each of the book’s chapters pertain to one “Superpower” the founders of the Life is Good® company have identified as necessary for living optimistically and staying positive. The 10 Superpowers are:
So this week things at work turned nasty. Like I found out a co-worker is attempting to ruin my career with false statements kind of nasty. While positive statement apparel and motivational prints at my desk can get me so far, nothing compares to the advice I found in Life is Good. I determined that the appropriate “Superpower” for this situation was: SIMPLIFY. (That’s why their shirts have such simple designs but yet they say so much!) Simplify life, unplug, go outdoors.
“Fresh air and a bit of unmarked time can do us all wonders. Imagine uninterrupted time: you and the people you love outside, just talking, roaming, playing. Physical clutter, mental clutter: gone. That’s what nature can do for us all. (Pg. 85)”
So this weekend I did just that. Rather than spend my weekend finishing some books, writing blog posts, or starting a new knitting project, I gathered some friends and hit the trail.
In a surprising turn of the weather, I awoke to an inch of snow on the ground, but then further precipitation held off in favor of a partially cloudy day. We had a lovely time walking, chatting, and lunching in the cabin at the top of the trail.
While our steady stream of girly chatter surely kept the newly awake bears away from us, as well as seemingly all other wild animals, we still enjoyed the views offered by the pristine wilderness. All the while I felt the stress of the last week begin to fall away. There’s nothing like friends, laughter, and a reminder of how small a piece you are in the wide world to put things in perspective. Friends are indignant for you at the right times. Then they manage to turn the frustration upside down and make you laugh. And a little fresh air and wilderness helps too.
This is what traveling can do for you too. And you know what would make a great travel book? Life is Good: The Book. It is such a quick read that you could finish it during an airplane ride and then leave it somewhere for another person to pick up. Perhaps they could use a little optimism advice. You could even turn the book into a Bookcrossing copy and follow its trail, spreading optimism in its wake! So go wild! Spread happiness! But go to the bookstore first.