May 15, 2012


Do you have any idea how hard it is to give yourself a spiritual makeover? You would think a snip here, a tuck there, a trip to Bali, a few exercises in positive thinking and... drum roll please! Out comes a fantastic new you.

I wish. Have you ever seen a snake molt? No? Well, me neither, but somehow I have the image buried deep in the recesses of my mind where all my 5th grade science lessons live that when that old, flaky skin peels right off the snake, he has all the same spots and stripes and snazzy colors that he did before. I suppose there's a lesson in that.

I'm currently on Day 9 of a 21-day positive psychology experiment that requires me to exercise, meditate, perform an act of kindness, note down something positive that happened and feel grateful about three things... every single day. Seriously. Every day. That's 21 acts of kindness. 21 days of something positive happening in between going to work, spilling coffee on yourself and eating too many of those chocolate nougat candies that have been sitting on your desk since the Christmas party. And 63 distinct and unique things to be grateful for. I mean come on. Can anybody actually do that? For 21 days in a row? Really. Really?

But I have learned something very important about myself in the process. Something you, dear reader, probably already knew. That's right. As it turns out, I like complaining. I'm a complainer. I'm just more Avenue Q than Sesame Street. And while I recognise the importance of positive thinking as a concept and a great facilitator for world peace, it just isn't very realistic to expect it from someone like me every single day.

And that's alright. I believe it's healthy and terribly grown up to own up to one's shortcomings. It's the soul's equivalent of professional development and 360° feedback. It's cleansing. Like this tidbit from a certain professor a few weeks ago (and a bit of a mentor of mine), who looked me straight in the eye and said "Sure, I get it. You want to feel like you belong. But first you're going to have to commit to something." Touché.

Can't commit. Loves to have a good grumble. God, I sound like the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. And green is so not my color...

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