Beardie’s guest blog got me thinking about self reflection and how and when I reflect.
Knitting the Moody Blanket means that I’m taking a bit of time at the end of each day to reflect and think about what my mood has been throughout the day. But I’m also finding myself reflecting whenever I have some quiet time…perhaps whilst driving or brushing my teeth!
I often find I need a nudge to give myself some quiet time and stop my mind racing around. I recently started using head-space and I find the guided meditation a really effective way to clear my head and get a good night’s sleep – particularly when I’m away with work.
I tend to use reading as a way to quiet my mind and I’m currently enjoying escaping to Hogwarts each night! I also enjoy reading books which are not an escape as such – but have made me reflect, altered the way I view the world and in some way ‘changed’ me.
One of these books was Yes Man by Danny Wallace. I haven’t seen the film because it sounds pretty awful and nothing like the book! And when I re-read the book a few years back it was nice to read but not as amazing as I remembered. But it had such an impact on my life at the time and continues to do so.
I think the effect this book had on my life was a lot to do with timing. Yes Man begins with Danny Wallace sitting around playing computer games and making excuses not to go out. Then, after being told by a stranger to ‘say yes more’, he decides to say yes to everything for a year…and much hilarity ensues! At the time I was not long out of uni, feeling rather negative, a bit overwhelmed by life and could very much relate to the finding excuses not to go out part of the book. I didn’t take things to the extreme of saying yes to everything, but after reading Yes Man, I started to say yes more, go with the flow more and go out more. This influenced a lot of big decisions I needed to take at that point in my life ultimately shaped my life as it is now.
Recently in our book group – it was my turn to choose, and I went for The Year of Living Danishly by Helen Russell. Denmark is the happiest nation in the world and with the Moody Blanket Knit-along approaching I was interested to know why and if there was anything I could take on board to make my year more yellow.
The most interesting thing for me was hearing the response from the other book group members. The general consensus seemed to be that it wasn’t a book they would have chosen to read but they enjoyed it. Whilst reading the book we had all reflected on our own lives, happiness and work/life balance, and as well as our normal rating of the book out of ten – we also decided to rate our own happiness out of ten!
This book reminded me a little of Yes Man in the sense that it was a true story of a year long challenge. Both books are wrapped up in witty anecdotes but ultimately have a vibe of positivity and the message that we have the power to make ourselves happy.
After reading The Year of Living Danishly – one of my friends really took on board some of the things which supposedly make the Danes happy, such as trusting people and having lots of candles! I love our little book group and the fact that my choice of book may have had the positive impact on others that Yes Man had on me is a lovely thought.
Have you ever read something which has made you look at the world differently without expecting it?