‘If only I wasn’t so stressed, I could be so happy.’ Sound familiar? Even when you count your blessings, there’s always a ‘but..’.
I try a lot of things to de-stress, but there’s little that has the power of music. As I settled down to write this, my background listening was the old Scottish folk song ‘MacCrimmon’s Lament’. Truly beautiful. A little mournful, perhaps, as MacCrimmon died in the Jacobite uprising. If I have one regret in life, it’s that I can’t play a musical instrument. I have a gut feeling I’d be quite good, but play more with my heart than my head. Technical prowess would be forgotten in the moment, a bit like when I was ballroom dancing as a child. All pouting features and wavy arms but no footwork. So I listen, I consume.
For the podcast, I interviewed a friend of mine last week. She holds down a full-time job, but spends hours of each day crafting and making. She was very clear that it relieved stress and made her happy. No mere consumer, Emma. You can see and even buy some of her work here: https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/EmmaLucyMakes
How do we create the virtuous circle that makes us happy enough not to be stressed, so we can do the things that make us happy? We’ve just got to push through and make those changes. Right now, apart from being busy getting the podcast ready, I am really working on making life changes. And that in itself can be stressful, but with the potential for great rewards.
Do read fellow blogger, Patti Clark’s, latest post: https://patticlark.wordpress.com/2015/07/31/happiness-is-good-for-your-health/
Of course we know that being happy is good for you, but the research quoted here shows just how detrimental unhappiness can be. Now I’m stressed thinking about that! No, seriously, it’s really inspiring.
So, what can we do? Consuming culture is a good place to start. Music lifts the soul. Art can do that too. Even a good bit of telly. But Squatting Toad is about being creative, so let’s create. You’ll hear more from Emma in a podcast soon. But let me know what you’re up to, what’s taking the stress away, and what’s making you happy.
In the meantime, a couple of tunes for you. The aforementioned MacCrimmon’s Lament
And one that really does lift my spirit
Enjoy and stay happy and creative.