Singing in the shower. Dancing as I prepare for my day. Jamming in the car on my way to work or on a road trip. Hearing myself randomly singing a line from a song I heard earlier. All of these things that make me smile and bring a feeling of fun to my days recently made their reappearance in my life. Last spring I wrote about another way that music is important to me. I use it as an anchor when I have a goal. Why then, did I forget for a while about how much music brings a sense of playfulness and even productivity to my days?
Over a number of months I have spent a lot of time listening to podcasts. It became the new normal of my morning routine. It was what I would listen to on my commutes to the middle school where I teach and to the studios where I teach yoga. I even listened to a line up of podcasts when I traveled to my last Pranakriya training.
The podcasts created a new opportunity for me to learn and grow, which I love. They added depth and thoughtfulness, new ideas to contemplate and share with others. One led me to attend two workshops at a local yoga studio with the host of a podcast I was listening to regularly. Some of the podcast episodes even led me to subscribe to other podcasts – more knowledge. All of this was fantastic, yet somewhere along the way, something was happening that I didn’t even realize until quite by accident one day.
I was on information overload!
Caught in my new routine and unaware of how it was affecting me, one morning I connected my phone to my bluetooth speaker and went to open the podcast app, when I accidentally clicked on the Pandora icon. Maybe this was a Freudian slip of the finger rather than the tongue, reminding me that too much of even a good thing can be counterproductive.
I paused, recognizing that it had been a decent amount of time since I started my day with music. I decided to leave Pandora open and listened to a station I had saved. I was singing in the shower again instead of turning my brain on full speed right away to pay attention to what someone had to say. I bopped to the music as I brushed my teeth and hair. The start of my day felt so different. I felt energized. I felt light. I felt free. I was smiling. It was fun!
After reclaiming that fun in my morning, that is exactly what I brought into my work day and how I related to the tasks I needed to complete. Instead of feeling tired and like I had so much to do, I was more awake, playful, and vibrant, better able to bring my best self to my students.
I forgot for a while to make space for these things amidst learning and putting so much energy into the work that I do. I got so focused that I forgot to have fun! I became reinvigorated by my accidental click that morning and reaffirmed that this is how I want to feel moving into my days. The podcasts have their place, and I’ll reintroduce them after a short break. Sometimes, though, when we let a little fun in, the work that we do is much more likely to feel like play. And bonus – we become even more productive!
These days my mornings are a dance party, and my commutes are like a concert in my car. I’m also taking back time to get lost in reading fiction by authors that I enjoy, or watch a bit of mindless TV (I love sitcoms).
What makes you feel lighthearted and lets you find fun, even among your work? When was the last time you let that fun and play into your days?
Hello and thanks for reading! I’m Amy, and like you, I am both a teacher and a student every day. I am grateful to teach a variety of subjects, including yoga, mindfulness, essential oils, and Spanish. I am a Pennsylvania native and have been practicing using all of these empowering tools for many years. I’m a constant seeker of balance in my own life and enjoy nothing more than weaving all of these passions together and sharing them via classes, workshops, writing, and more to serve others as they bring balance to their lives, too. I also love infusing these gifts into my work as a public school educator. I would love to share more with you – connect with me at www.balanceformylife.com