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The Orange Jumper

Today I bought an orange jumper, from a charity shop in Nottingham. I have never been to Nottingham before. I have always longed for an orange jumper, just like the one I found today.

Why? Because orange, the colour orange, makes me feel good, vibrant, uplifted, energised, motivated. I generally feel quite motivated and excited by life in any case, but this, I believe, is because I have this perspective on life, such as, an orange jumper helps things along nicely (and only £7.50, so much happiness for a total bargain price!)

Its all about perspective. Optimist I am, I am also human. I do have days where I don’t feel so great, but  most of the time I know what I need to do to feel ‘better’. Isn’t that the case with most of us? We know what we need to do to feel good, but we feel almost guilty for doing it.

Why do we feel guilty for caring for ourselves? If we don’t care for ourselves first and foremost we are not in a position to care for or support others. Our self care is like the foundations of a house or the plants in a garden, if we don’t ‘water our own garden first’ (Thank you to my wonderful first Yoga teacher Jenni), our plants will die. We need to tend to ourselves first.

Last time I talked about change. This year has brought about massive changes for so many people, in many cases totally life altering and incredibly challenging to deal with. Change is the only certainty in this life. We can fight it and create ‘Dukkha’ (a feeling of unsatisfactoriness with how things are) within ourselves or we can swim with the tide and aim for Sukha (happiness with acceptance of how things are).

The serenity prayer (below) summarises so well what we inherently know but often forget. There is so much we can’t control. There is little point concerning yourself with these events or people whom you have no control over. In reality the only ‘thing’ you have any say over is yourself.

So consider, what makes you feel good? Really good? Smiling, love, laughter, time with friends, time outdoors, reading, knitting…..whats really important to you? Do you have enough time for this feel good factor in your life right now? What can you do for yourself today to ‘feel better’?

Sometimes things that create that Sukha feeling come unexpectedly, I never thought I would find my orange jumper in Nottingham today (I wasn’t even looking for it), but I did, and it feels so good! So be on the look out for the simple things, the everyday ordinary things that make you feel good, because when crisis happen and we don’t experience normality we really can take time to appreciate the Sukha feeling when things settle once again. Don’t let a crisis create this appreciation, appreciate now what you’ve got today. Practice gratitude for your life.