The first thing that happened is that one of my co-workers proposed that we start a Happiness Project at the office. Despite the fact that I'm generally pretty goshdarned happy, I joined up right away. In our first meeting, I put together a list of some things that I think would improve my life. I also stole a few things from other people that I hadn't thought of. Here's my list:
- Health - Start my morning walks again, do one yoga class per week, have as many vegetarian meals as possible and schedule one deep-tissue massage each month.
- Free time - Set aside at least one weekday evening per week and one full weekend day per month and keep them unscheduled.
- Work - Become more engaged with my co-workers and the company culture. I've gotten into a bad habit of just working, working, working and then going home, sometimes with nary a conversation all day long. That needs to change.
- Home - Spend more time with my husband and pets. Get (and stay) caught up on household chores and projects.
- Self - Less time online, more time hanging out with friends and family. Read the ever-growing stack of books on my coffee table. Find more activities to do out in the world. Bring more creativity into my blogging.
One of ones I stole from someone else was: commute in silence. I've been driving without the radio on for a couple of weeks now and it's really been relaxing and peaceful. I'm exposed to enough sound and fury the rest of the time, so it's nice to get a break and have a more visual driving experience.
Not long after I made my list, one of my favorite bloggers, Alice Bradley, offered an online class called The Practice of Writing, designed to "jumpstart your creative life in five weeks." I didn't even have to read the whole page before I was ready to sign up. And I did.
If you're one of my loyal (long-suffering) blog readers, I think you'll agree that my writing isn't exactly inspired these days. When I read back through my early posts, there's just more personality and humor and spark. If anyone can help me rediscover that voice, it's Alice.
I'm making baby steps toward my goals, but just the mere fact of having them written down makes me more aware of them and more likely to see them through. Let's hope we all reap the benefits.