The past few days have been rainy and cold in Sweden, and today it is beautiful and sunny. Reflecting on the last few days has reminded me of many years ago when I was in the modeling world (almost 15 years ago now); I met a really interesting guy. He was from The Netherlands, and we were both in Milan for the show season in January, sharing a small flat in a basement. I should point out that I have a Master’s Degree from a top US university and some coursework on a PhD completed, and I can say that I had more meaningful intellectual conversations while modeling than any I had in academia. In other words, be careful about stereotypes.
Anyway, I was talking with him about how the weather was really nice that day, and it really helps you to have a good day. He said, “why do you need nice weather to have a good day? A good day comes from your outlook, and it can happen no-matter what.” Back then as a guy in my early 20’s finding myself all alone in the world, this was a really poignant statement. So true.
After that, I went about putting those words into practice. A “good day” or “bad day” is about what is internally happening and how that translates into your outlook. I believe with all of my being that you can decide the moment you wake up if the day is going to be good or not-so-good. It is all about choices.
Those choices lead to your outlook about happiness, and it is all about looking for the things that you need in order to be happy (and the bar for what you need to be happy should be set really really low). For example, if you need good weather to have a good day, and it is rainy and cold in the middle of July, then you can see how beautiful the rain is when it is crashing down, and how cozy it is when you are inside. But even better than that is not relying on external things (like weather) that are beyond your control – but instead to say to yourself (literally or figuratively), “today is a great day” when you wake up.
A day is neutral when it starts – it can turn out however you want it to – so by saying “today is a great day”, you are saying to yourself that today already exists as a good day, with nice things to experience. It takes the power away from other things or people or events to control how you experience the day. Let’s say you are feeling really down or overwhelmed by something (or life in general) – if you repeat “today is a great day” to yourself as soon as you wake up, you will eventually convince yourself of the goodness of the day, and you can overcome those challenges easier. Over time it will not take repeating, it will just be a natural mindset you have when you wake up.
We all have good days and bad days, and it would be silly to try to have 100% good days, because we are human, and part of being human is having emotions. Emotions can have a way of building up and can then have a way of cracking through and clouding your vision. So, again I refer to my friend who said, “you control if your day is good or bad.” Don’t let the world you experience be clouded by a little rain – remember that behind the clouds there is always sunshine, and you control which one you see. 😉