Lifting Spirits

If you’ve read my latest novel, Murderous Means, you may be thinking the title of this post has to do with other-worldly, occult happenings. Not so. This post is about lifting one’s spirits, literally, as we kick off 2024. 

There are many of us eager to make positive and meaningful changes in our lives; to achieve personal growth and transformation and to move forward in a better way. It doesn’t take all that much to make this happen. Just a little will and mind power. It starts by finding little things that bring us joy. 

Our eight-year-old shepherd, Chico, did just that recently. A sweetie pie and nonathletic fellow, he prefers lying down to practically anything else. After a short walk around the yard, if I dare pause for any reason, he’ll hit the ground…lying.The other day however, Chico grabbed a toy that he hadn’t played with in a long while, and thrashed it about with great enthusiasm. For about eight seconds. We’d adopted him when he was four, and have only seen him thrash and shake a few times and that was a while ago. What prompted the burst of joy? 

He’d just finished eating (his first and foremost reason for being) and enjoyed his meal immensely, which gave him an instant lift, which he displayed by thrashing. Ah, the simple pleasures of life!

If we each take time, daily, to pause and contemplate the beautiful experiences in our lives, we too can become happy thrashers. We have the ability to manufacture our own joy, which can change our present experiences as well as our attitudes. 

I visited the local library today. After I’d checked out my books and returned to my car, I didn’t leave right away. I paused and spent a few minutes appreciating my surroundings; the air that flowed through my open window, the pure blueness of the sky dotted with silvery, puffy clouds, as well as the tall oak trees whose widespread canopy gave me shade during my pausing. It was an instant spirit and mood lifter.

I read that we should picture the New Year as a garden we are responsible for planting. If we sow the seeds of good thoughts and habits in the soil and weed out the worries and troubles of the past, we can create our own happiness right where we are. How easy is that? 




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