ARCHIVE LIBRARY

The Sunny Side

by Ron Cook

During times like these, we must struggle to keep our hearts safe. We must remind ourselves that life can be difficult even in the best of times. What we find joyful when we are happy, may also bring us joy when we are not. By now, many of us may have exhausted our sense of, “oh, this will pass soon.” We may have gone through our short list of mindless activities that shore us up in the short run. It may be time to review our checklist for joy and hope and, perhaps, add a few new items. Sometimes we may even need to remind ourselves of the simple pleasures we have overlooked in our cloudy outlook …

Here are a few things to consider that may bring you happiness today:

Reading is a wonderful outlet. When we read, we can only focus on one thing at a time. Pick a book that holds your attention, then dedicate time to reading it when you don’t allow distractions. Pick a book with a story. Stories tend to hold us in, and cause us to look forward to the next event.

Naps are a great break in the day. Short ones are best so they don’t interfere with our nighttime sleep.

Sunshine gives us that wonderful vitamin D we need to enhance our good attitude. Walking, sitting or riding a bike in the sunshine can remind us that the sunshine always follows the dark night.

Our spiritual practice can be continued at home. Even if we can’t congregate, we can still find a place to pray and meditate.

The seasons are still with us. Spring has sprung and summer is a comin’!

Music is available on our phones, laptops or cd players. Listen to what you like. Try some new stuff. Whistle while you work or play. We seem to always have a tune in our heads. Make it a joyful one!

Relationships and conversations are still there for us. Reconnect, write, text, blog, keep in touch with those you love.

Dancing and singing are definitely good. If you exude joy, it becomes contagious, and, pretty soon, you are joyful also!

Imagination and kindness can spark an act from you that brings joy to others as well. My sister has learned how to make sourdough bread. She has used her imagination to create wonderful variations of culinary joy for her family.

Kindness, love and, of course, hope are all still here for us. If you seek them, you will find them.

Keep looking on the sunny side of the street. Life is still filled with wonderful possibilities.

Ronald Cook

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