March 31, 2011

Starting the day with a smile

I called my friend Tami recently, and when I asked how she was doing she replied, "Living the Dream!"

The slightly tongue-in-cheek reply is one we have been using for a while. I believe it originally came from a barista at Tami's normal coffee stop. To the innocuous question of "how are you doing" tossed back and forth without real meaning, the barista replied that she was "living the dream". And on that morning, she was entirely serious.

She went on to list the good things going on in her life (health, family, friends, etc) and reiterated that she had nothing to complain about. Life was good.

It reminded me of another barista from several years ago. As I have mentioned several times, I am not a morning person. I stumbled into this Seattle's Best Coffee looking for a cup of joe for the drive to work. Like now, our job sites were scattered around the area, so my morning route was always a little different. I had stopped into this particular SBC a few times before, and the same gal was always running the show.

She was a ball of enthusiasm and radiated energy. It was not forced or superficial. She was also "living the dream", focusing on the positive and appreciating all life had to offer. She had been up for hours by the time I stumbled in, including a stop at the gym before work. I may have said this elsewhere, but it is amazing the affect of a smiling face first thing in the morning. I think I got as much of a boost from her positive energy as I did from the morning shot of caffeine.

I am still not a morning person, but I getting a better appreciation for that time of day. I had always preferred to run in the evenings after work, and do my homework late into the night. But things have changed down here. During the summer, I have been running in the mornings to avoid the heat of the day, and I have also been trying to write first thing in the morning before the day gets started.

It is still a struggle to get out of bed, but it is a great feeling to accomplish your daily goals before the day has a chance to go sideways. I have been up early the last couple of days to take care of some things before heading off to work. I have been grabbing my breakfast on the run again, and my local Starbucks knows my name from all the visits. And I am starting the day with a smiling, friendly face.

I am trying to return the favor and smile and wave to the first people I see each day, knowing that it could make a small difference. I may not be morning person, but I am trying the fake it 'til you make it method in the meantime.


Holly Linden said...

I don't think actually making that effort when you don't feel like it, is "faking it." I think it's the real thing. Pretty great!

SeanH said...

I'm with Holly! It's called "behaviorism," and it works. Act one way, and your emotions will follow.

By the way, when you smiled and waved from your car when I pulled up to the job site today, I nearly spit my gatorade on my windshield.

tami said...

Does this mean I can be myself next time we meet for a morning run? I don't have to be 'weally, weally qwiut'? Ha, we shall see next week.