The miserable Arctic weather and lack of sunshine is making me feel, well, miserable. Thankfully I recently bought Albert Espinosa’s fabulous book, The Yellow World and life suddenly looks a whole lot brighter.
Espinosa wrote the book after surviving cancer, and many of his inspiring points can apply to anyone, not just people living with a serious illness:
Ask 5 good questions each day – silly ones, practical ones, emotional ones. No matter what the question is, having answers will empower you.
Keep a life record – keeping things that are important to you at the time can help you look back and realise how unimportant they are now. The embodiment of the ‘but will it matter in a years time?’ rule. Also keep things that remind you of good times – the heart-shaped stone you found on a beach, the drawing your nephew made just for you.
Find the positives – life doesn’t go to plan, but your reactions to it can. Even if it’s only small, try to find something positive in everything.
Take 20 minutes out every day – Espinosa learned this from having to stay still during scans. Shutting out life for just 20 minutes can free the mind.
Look at things – so often we rush through life not noticing our surroundings. Try to make a conscious effort to see the details we often miss.
Finally, collect Yellows. You know who they are – the people with that certain energy, that goodness about them that just makes you want to be in their orbit. MS has taught me to turn away from the negative people I used to know, the energy-sappers, the fair-weather friends, the doom-and-gloom merchants. I just don’t have the space or time for them in my life any more. Their ‘void’ has been filled by people I can’t wait to spend time with. If anyone else has read this book, let me know what you think?
Those are wonderful tips. I am going to try them — especially the last three. Am looking right now at two bumblebees buzzing around the spring bulbs that have popped out very recently. And a lovely pink flowering magnolia. Nice to have the laptop right here so I can see the pretty world right outside my window.
Now please excuse me while I take 20 minutes (husband woke me up at 5am crashing out of bed).
I think they’re lovely and simple but effective. I tried ploughing my way through The Power of Now, but all the long words and tangled ideas proved too much for my tiny brain!
I too have taken my own advice, and truth be told, I have had a lovely day. Nothing to do with having a day off work, of course. But I have tried to look a lot closer at the details all around me.
I am currently looking at Bubble the cat, who is very perplexed to see an ant and doesn’t know quite what to do with it.
Your post even inspired me to take my 20 minutes and sit outside (rather than staring slack-jawed from the confines of my house). It was even more spectacular out there. Lovely and quiet and flowery and bee-ey.
Suspect Bubble will figure out how to dispatch that ant! I’ve had to rescue many a sad little insect from Proper Squeaky, who seems to like to torture them rather than kill them outright.
Bubble once brought a tiny little mouse into the house and we lost it. Found its body in a shopping bag MONTHS later. My mum’s cat (who thinks it’s a dog and is called Yoda) once brought home a guinea pig. Sad but true.
OMG, a desiccated little mouse chip! How dreadful!
It was GRIM. And the smell. Crikey. Took me ages to work out where exactly it was coming from. And there was me blaming The Teenager.
p.s. Of COURSE your nice day had nothing to do with being off work!!
Definitely not. And of course, nothing to do with my lovely mum popping down soon with a bottle of wine….
Concise, practical advice — even for the not-so-blue days. Thanks for sharing those thoughtful take-aways from the book!
Thank you. Love your blog btw. Another miserable day here in the UK, so still trying to think yellow!