A Little Reminder

Last Friday I had a little reminder of the beauty that surrounded me the entire week I was in Hawaii this past January. I was out at Vintage Villas on Lake Travis. The catering staff used gorgeous small orchids to decorate the different plates of food. One look at those orchids took me back to the welcoming lei of orchids I received upon arrival at the Sheraton Maui Resort.

My little reminder of Hawaii and my incredible week in paradise.

My little reminder of Hawaii and my incredible week in paradise.

My co-host for this past January’s trip and our upcoming second visit to Maui in ’09, Monica, was with me last Friday. We both exclaimed over the beauty of these delicate flowers and launched into a discussion of ideas for making the 2009 trip even better. One small detail – one little flower — became a transport back to an incredible event. With all of the negative news around us, we all need a little reminder of a joyful experience.

What’s your joyful event? What happened this past year that brought a genuine smile to your  face, a light in your eyes, and a warm glow to your body? Now that you have an image of that experience in your mind, find a little reminder that when your eyes light upon it, you’re immediately transported back to all of those good feelings. The antidote to worrying about the upcoming elections, the financial crisis, the natural disasters, and accidents is very simple. It’s the ability to break the chain of fearful thoughts that have nothing to do with what’s going on now.

You can effortlessly bring yourself back to the present moment and into a more positive frame of mind by giving yourself a few moments in the past — in the joyful past. Be choosy about just what memory you use. Your mind will want to go back to worrying, so it might try to find a negative memory associated with your positive experience! Pick a joyful memory that you can easily turn away from any inconsequential negative things that happened on that trip, with that person, or in that space — whatever memory it is, keep feeding it with positive emotions. So, the next time you glance at that orchid, rock, picture, feather, or whatever your “little reminder” is, you give yourself an instant jolt of joy juice.

When I flew back from Hawaii, I carried a bottle of Hawaiian spring water on the plane. I’ve saved that bottle and pull it out to look at the image on the front. It’s another goofy way for me to remember that trip. As far as I’m concerned, my silly insistance on keeping that plastic bottle isn’t silly at all. It’s a free and simple way to bring back a joyful experience. Do you have any silly little reminders? I’d love to hear about them — after you’ve spent a few moments in bliss again.

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