How to Inject Some Fun and Wonder Into Your Regular Routine
If you’ve been trying (and failing) for a while to break out of your humdrum daily routine and seize life by the cajones (thank you high school Spanish), you might want to start smaller and see how everything already around you is already interesting and wonderful just the way it is.
In the spirit of those “1,000 Reasons to Be Happy” lists that were all the rage in the 90’s, here’s my simple list of how you can add some oomph into your day, even if you have no special plans or special funds to give your life a jump start.
1.) Start Your Day With Positive Vibes
I know what you’re going to say. Positive people are smug and annoying. You know what’s even MORE annoying? Negative people running on an endless loop spewing why everything sucks, everyone sucks, etc. and poisoning the space around them with angst and woe. You can’t always control who’s standing next to you and what mood people under the same roof are in, but you CAN control how you react and what you say to yourself.
The most important times of the day to think positively (aside from all day) are right after you wake up and right before you go to sleep. This is when your subconscious mind is at its most fertile/responsive. Try to make sure that your first thoughts of the day are how amazing the day is going to be, that you are going to accomplish what you set out to do, connect with loved ones, paint the town red, etc. Do this even if it feels weird at first. Read more about the power of your subconscious mind here-> The Power of Your Subconscious Mind
2.) Add Some Color to Your Life
It’s gray outside this time of year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t put UP some festive lights in your living room (like all the coolest restaurants do year-round), wear a ridiculously bright technicolor scarf outside, put up a bright orange Indian tapestry in your office (it increases productivity, creativity, and energy), or treat yourself to a bunch of flowers for no reason. The weather may be gray, but you don’t have to be.
3.) Put Some Toys in Your Work Space
You mean to tell me that you take yourself SO seriously that you can’t have, say, a little bobble-head of your favorite rock star/TV character on your desk? Or a lava light in your favorite color? Or a little stress reliever squeeze toy? How about a small bowl of candy or mints that anyone who visits you can grab? Do you at least have photos of your loved ones or a calendar up that speaks to your passions and interests? Love your workspace more and you will love your time there more, even if every hour you’re secretly updating your resume to find a better job. I won’t tell on you.
4.) Make Your Wish list
When I was a freshman in college, I read a lovely little book called Living Your Life Out Loud: How to Unlock Your Creativity and Unleash Your Joy. You are now rolling your eyes, but at that time I was surrounded by negative people in a negative city and this little book opened my mind to all the possibilities I had before me. One of the tasks was to write a wish list of all the things I wanted to do in life, no matter how insanely impossible they were to me at the time.
Things on my list included volunteering in India, going on a safari in Africa, making animations that would play in a movie theater, marry someone I loved deeply at a beautiful location by the ocean, and live and work in foreign countries… all things I have now done, albeit quite a few years later. Some happened right away like, “learn to cook” and “become friends with my brother” and others I’m still working on twenty years later like taking that trip to space! What’s nice about this list is you can make one right now and then be on the lookout for all the little ways life tries to grant your wishes. You just have to be observant and take action when opportunities arise.
5.) Just Add Music
Psst. Did you know that your positive thoughts are 1,000 times MORE effective when you are feeling intense positive emotions while you are thinking them? So, if you ARE updating your resume to find a better job, why not do so to your favorite tunes? (I’m assuming you don’t listen to a lot of death metal or pissed-off rap.) If it doesn’t upset your concentration, add music while doing work that doesn’t require extreme focus. If you have a long commute, this is also a great opportunity for music, audio language learning (for that amazing trip on your wish list), or a good audio book.
6.) Focus on What You Already Have and Where You Already Are
So, I’m a Professor of Digital Media and yet I refuse to do internet on my Smartphone. The reason is I already am so focused on the online world and my place in it when I am at my desk, I don’t need to take that world with me when I’m walking around with my two young sons or people I want to have an actual conversation with. I know I’m a freak for saying this, but consider unplugging and walking around your neighborhood sans glowing screens.
For at least fifteen seconds a day, focus on your feet touching the pavement, the tree that still has a few leaves on it, the dog wagging its tail at you, the blue shutters that just got painted, etc. Sure, you might also notice someone flipping out in a fit of road rage (hopefully not at you). Just see it as a dramatic show put on for your own amusement. When you intensely focus on the now, suddenly the whole world comes alive. No joke. Notice how colors seem brighter, textures more vibrant, sounds are more clear. Also, watch out for that dog poop on the sidewalk or you’ll ruin your new-found inner calm. (In some countries it’s good luck though, I hear.)
7.) Watch My Short Video to Learn More Easy Ways to Inject Creativity Into Your Daily Life (5 Minutes)
This is a sample lesson from my online course, Skyrocket Your Creativity and Get Better Ideas: 7 Easy Ways. You can preview more lessons and get a special launch discount for the full course here if you’d like to learn how to get more and better ideas in just under 1 hour.
Well, those are my best tips for rebooting your routine. May your blah days become more merry and extraordinary!
If you have your own secret tips to help others turn a boring day into something extraordinary, please leave them in the comments.