I was born in Florida. I do not do well in darkness or cold. I am happy to be Texan only when the sun is out. Winter is to me what water is to fire. Lucky for me, winters in Texas have commitment issues.
Any week in a Texas winter might contain both freezing temps and brilliant sun.
Days so beautiful even nature is tricked into believing that spring has come.
When sun is on your face, there is only possibility. As much a gift in the dead of winter as a day at the beach, without actually going to one.
We had a day like that last week. So we made the most of it. My granddaughter Smarty Pants and I traveled a hundred miles of country roads for what she proclaimed the Best.Day.Ever.
If you’re still looking for resolutions for the new year, let me help.
Fake Spring and a nine-year-old taught me ….
5 Ways to Make the Most of Your Days
1) Strive for your Best Day Ever
I first heard Smarty Pants’ new mantra just before winter break. I picked her up from school. As she climbed into the back seat, I asked how her day had been.
“Best day ever,” she proclaimed.
“Yep,” she continued, “I didn’t get in trouble in any of my classes. And I think I made a new friend.”
“Wow,” I remember saying again. “It can’t get better than that.”
“Of course it can,” she quipped. “I have lots more days left.” And she explained that if every day she tried to make her day better, she could. The end.
‘Best day ever’ is not superfluous to her. Her day ended well because of what she put into it.
Best because of what she could control.
Best days are not measuring sticks of perfection, but reminders that something good can always come of trying. And each new day is a chance to try again.
2) Make a list
Smarty Pants always makes a list. She is a list maker. She makes a list of everything she is going to do when she has sleepovers at my house. She includes things like staying up till midnight and being nice to the cat. She makes one for anything that is important to her. It’s her map. Her guide.
Putting your desires and expectations onto paper is the important part. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t achieve them all. But having something to look forward to is sometimes all it takes to have a better day.
3) Don’t confuse fun with goofing off
Fun is good for us. It puts us at ease. It makes us laugh or smile. Goofing off, while distracting and time consuming, is not always fun.
You can spend hours doing nothing and not enjoy yourself at all. Consider the hours we spend online. Unwinding, maybe avoiding something, does not guarantee fun. Fun is an attitude. A mindset. It’s important to know the difference.
4) Believe it is never too late
Every day offers another chance. Just when you think that winter has beaten you, the sun rules a day in the middle of January. Sun on your face and wind in your hair is a divine feeling of rebirth. Of course there will be bad days. But, as Adam Duritz sings in the Counting Crows song “Possibility Days”, ‘the best part of a bad day is knowing it’s okay’.
5) Remember there is more than one way to look at something
I have a very wise friend who says “When you change the way you look at things, the things you think about will change.”
Every situation, no matter how painful or bitter has another side that you are not seeing. A piece of the story you may never know. It’s point of view. However we see something is never all there is to be seen. For me that glorious fake spring day in the country was a long and romantic trip that ended with ice cream. But when Smarty Pants tells the story, it is the day we drove the longest way ever just to get to Double Dip!
Listen to Counting Crows- Possibility Days