Thursday, June 4, 2015

You Cannot Find Peace by Avoiding Life

This week's writing prompt is - "Ten Things That Make Me Really Happy."

So, here you go:

1) Mornings where I can sleep in. It's rare for me to get more than six hours of sleep, and lately I've been trying to push myself closer to seven.  It has been a struggle because I have programmed my body to function on minimal sleep.  The body is dependent on sleep for recovery, and while it doesn't hurt me to get less than the recommended eight hours, I wish my body would naturally relax and allow me to get more rest.

2) My cats Mozart and Daisy. My babies adore me so much so that it gets frustrating.  Mozart is a clingy little monster, and he thinks I am his bed, but he is also the first to comfort me when I get scared.  I would probably say that he is a safe place for me.  He brings to me a sense of security and normalcy.  Daisy is my little fat-o.  She needs to stop eating; she's really heavy, but solid, it's weird.  She steals Mozart's food, pushing him out of the way when I feed the two of them.  She is so afraid she is going to starve to death, and I know that has something to do with the way I found her.  While she has her fears, she is the most affection little chatterbox.  She loves getting attention, especially from men.  Both my babies share my bed with me, and they both have their spots curled up against me.

3) Going for my daily runs.  I find running to be relaxing.  Exercise in general relaxes me.  I'm a naturally active person and I enjoy movement (I'm a fidgeter), but I also enjoy the way exercise opens my mind and calms me.  It is interesting, lifting weights requires you to focus; if you lose focus, depending on your weight load, you run the risk of hurting yourself.  All the years of training have taught me how to keep my attention centered on the activity at hand.

4) Reading books.  Anyone who knows me knows I love books.  I have time constraints, so I try to allow myself the luxury of reading a book a week (I used to read a book a day, sometimes two).  I don't always achieve this goal, but I do read something every day.  Sometimes I read blog posts.  Sometimes I read news reports.  Sometimes I read up on ways to improve as a writer.  As long as I'm reading, I'm happy.

5) Seeing my friends and family. I love my family and I love my friends, and although they are scattered across the country, I still cherish the times and memories I have created with each person.  I wish I had more time to visit with the people that live closer to me.  I miss my bestest... she's in the early stages of a happy, healthy relationship that's basically a marriage, and I am in the early stages of building a business.  We both have our own things going on, and as a result, I don't get to see her near as often as I want to, but I love her to pieces.  That said, she and I need to have a meal together soon.

6) Eating good food.  By this I mean food that tastes good to me.  I don't like overpriced fancy food.  If food looks weird to me, there is a good chance I won't eat it.  I probably won't even try it.  When I take my trips to Dallas to visit my sister, she always tells me these stories about how she and Ron (my brother-in-law) first met, and about their first date.  He took her to a fine dining, overly expensive, restaurant, and when she looked at the prices on the menu, she couldn't eat anything.  She could not justify the price tag to what was being served.  She wanted to leave immediately.  It didn't matter that someone else was paying for the meal.  This is a trait my sister and I have in common.  My brother-in-law will often, in good humor, look at my sister and I and say “You Cheairs girls are the same.” because we are.  My perfect date would not involve a fancy restaurant. 

7) Creating something. I'm a storyteller/creator. I love working on new stories.  I love outlining new stories.  I love writing.  I love creating characters, and breathing life into them.  I am happiest when I'm working on a story.  Unfortunately, I have to broaden my horizons and work beyond storytelling, but, in the end, I am happiest when I am creating something that is more personal to me.

8) Traveling.  Nothing makes me happier than jumping on a plane and going in a direction opposite of where I live.  Nothing makes me happier than jumping in a car and hitting the road somewhere other than where I am right now.  I love to travel.  I love to see random things; I love to experience new cultures.

9) Pictures. I'm not the best fashion blogger out there because I don't go out and take a billion pictures of the outfit I'm wearing today.  I do love pictures, but I also love words, and I think the two go together.  For me, I love going out and taking random pictures.  I love creating memories of moments.  I love documenting my vacations.  I have a webinar coming up in two days on what it takes to be a travel writer, and one of the areas travel writing emphasizes is getting comfortable capturing pictures of the places that you see.  When writing an article or blog post, images help to draw your audience in and gives them an experience through your eyes, but words are just as important as pictures because words explain those experiences.  I love pictures because they remind me of the wonderful places I have seen.  I also love them because they remind me of the people I've shared memories with.

10) Getting a blog post done on time.