Have you ever noticed how subtle things like color and music can affect your mood?
As part of the gradual transition my life seems to be going through, I’ve been tuning into some of the things in my world that used to play in the background, so to speak.
For example, I’ve always been an avid reader on the hunt for my next title. At one point, I even listened to books on tape while exercising each day. But my mind has been so cluttered for the past year that I haven’t really been able to read much of anything besides a newspaper or quick hitting online publication. Magazines stack up at my bedside. The list of books I want to read someday grows.
In place of words, I’ve plugged music. I always liked music. It just wasn’t something that played a big part in my daily routine. These days, however, music is key. Depending on my mood and what I’m doing at the time, it could be mellow tunes such as Josh Groban or Five for Fighting or it might be Rihanna or Eminem or Coldplay playing at top volume. Music, I suppose, drowns out the need to think. And sometimes it just makes me feel better.
With color, it typically takes a little longer to figure out what’s bothering me. My office at The Daily News is a good example. White walls, funky fluorescent lights. After struggling through my first migraine in years two weeks ago, I realized the walls reflect the light and make me feel a little nutty. Sterile. Blah. Thankfully, walls can be painted and I’ve had good time figuring out what color will create the best mood. I landed on a shade of gray.
On one hand, it doesn’t always take a lot to taint my mood. Things like crowded spaces, that loud whistling noise people make with their fingers, or negative attitudes tend to rub me the wrong way. On the other hand, simple things like a walk around Baldwin Lake, an extra hot nonfat chai, or time with my kids and dog can turn my day for the better.
In this world where we all have to work a little harder and dig a little deeper to see the bright side of life, figuring out what your mood boosters are is key.
Julie Stafford is publisher of The Daily News. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (616) 548-8260.