I've been crushing through some podcasts lately. A friend recently recommended the Mountain & Prairie podcast. And since I was wallowing in wild disappointment about Winston Churchill and the the untold truths of history after listening to Malcolm Gladwell's Revisionist History (highly recommend), I couldn't wait to hop on that Mountain & Prairie horse.
The first interview I listened to was with Jillian Lukiwski, mostly because it was the most recent. I was also drawn to the fact that Jillian is a writer, photographer, and silversmith. Jillian captivated me with her work and life in the woods. At one point during the interview she said, "Identify 5 things you must do everyday to feel alive." Because I love a good call-to-action and challenge, I found my five!
1. Drink black coffee out of a good mug. I may have to invest in an extreme teeth-whitening procedure in 10 years, but it's worth it. There is nothing like that first sip of piping-hot coffee that burns your tongue. Also, I cannot drink out of paper cups. I just can't.
2. Must go outside. I spent my summers outside in the mountains of West Virginia. Most of the time, I would sit in my grandmother's apple tree and sing to myself because, well, only child. As an adult, I find inspiration when listening to the wind blow through the trees. (I'm not weird at all!)
3. Tell someone I love them. Quite often, I have a random burst of love for someone and need to express it. Life is too short to keep your kind words to yourself. Am I right? People just need to know that they are deeply loved!
4. Sing out loud. I would say that along with writing, singing is something I'm halfway decent at. When visiting my Maw-Maw and Paw-Paw in the summers, I would stare at my reflection in their toaster and sing to the top of my lungs. No big deal. When I sing, I truly feel it. There is a reason why I love musicals. You ever wonder why a character explodes into song mid-conversation? It's because they feel their emotion so deeply that it can only be expressed via song. I. Get. It.
5. Write at least a paragraph. "It's very important to write things down instantly, or you can lose the way you were thinking out a line. I have a rule that if I wake up at 3 in the morning and think of something, I write it down." // Mary Oliver is one of my literary heroines. I recently told a friend that I wish I could wake up at 4 in the morning to jot something down, but I always tell myself that I'll remember it when my alarm wails for the tenth time. I always forget. *insert eye roll* Words are little vehicles that can carry much good, and I can drive them better than I can my literal car. I don't always share what I write, but I try to write a paragraph a day. Sometimes it's just a line scribbled in my journal. Regardless, the written word gives me life, and I need it on a daily basis like I need that black coffee.