I meet singer-songwriter Dermot Kennedy this morning. Afterwards, I type his name into Spotify and admire his voice, lyrics, and most of all, his passion.
Listening to his music ignites something deep inside of me. I have the urge to dance. To write. To spill technicolour all over a blank canvass.
I welcome the first day of summer by attending a yoga and music workshop with musician and yoga teacher Jack Harrison.
We lie down and begin with some breathing exercises. Jack strums his guitar, recites poetry and sings.
Today, I decide to spend the whole day chilling out at home. I have a lie-in, I meditate, I eat breakfast.
I reply to a few text messages. I attempt to get cheap car insurance. I have lunch. I read emails. I watch Whip It for the second time.
The last few days have been strange. I went on a date that ended horribly. A man from my hometown was assaulted and later died. I visited a woman I know in hospital who was badly injured in an accident. And a client of mine passed away. She was a really lovely 36-year-old woman who is leaving behind a loving family, including three small girls.
What I’ve realised over these past few days is how much I’ve changed, how different my reactions are, and how grateful I am.
Yesterday morning, I walked. The wind stirred the leaves, mimicking a melody of foaming sea to shore.
Yesterday evening, I received very sad news that had me sobbing.
Tonight at an Amber Run gig, I watch as the band becomes immersed in playing. There’s something riveting about witnessing other people express their creativity and passion. It’s exciting to be invited to share the experience.
The vibration of the music pulses through my body. The beat of the drums pulls me in and spurs me on. My hips begin to sway. I raise my arms and close my eyes.
Some of you will be familiar with a popular song of the moment, “Cheerleader” by OMI. Well, up until Sunday night, I thought the lyrics went something like this: “Oh I think that I found myself a cherry air.”
Which makes no sense at all but I happily sang along anyway while enjoying the sunshiney sound of the trumpet.
“We’re supposed to be different. Thank goodness.”
I posted these words on my Facebook page yesterday evening along with a quote from Susan Cain’s insightful book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking.
This morning, I arise at 5am to bring my brother to the airport. We embrace at departures and I drive away.
An evocative song plays on the radio and tears slide down my cheeks. Life is painful, I decide. No sooner have I had that thought when I have another: But it’s also beautiful.
Yesterday evening, I watched a documentary called Happy. This film explores what makes people happy. It was a welcome reminder of what happiness really is and all the ways we can work on and maintain happiness in our lives.
Interestingly, our genetic makeup determines 50 per cent of our happiness. Some of us are just born happier! Circumstance (where we live, our job, life events) only contributes 10 per cent towards our happiness. So we have a whole 40 per cent to work with. We have the power to boost our own happiness. It’s a personal choice. And one well worth making.