Laura Grace Weldon, author of Free Range Learning (what a great term – free range learning) recently came up with yet another inspiring verbal coinage: “Delight-Driven Willpower.” (Not that the majority of her posts aren’t brilliant and chock-full of inspiring verbal coinages – just that this one was, for me, especially delightful, profoundly delightful, even, worthy of every fun coach that ever coached fun). She writes:
We often associate self-discipline with the loss of short term pleasure (lose weight, save money, stop wasting so much time on Facebook). But for some of us with pretty decent impulse control, self-discipline can too easily tip into self-berating. Negativity gets us nowhere. It’s essential to be attuned to the positive, to see how we’re making progress rather than focusing on where we’re going wrong.
I think we should use willpower to cultivate delight to our lives rather than seeing it as a way of dropping bad habits. Those lovely new joys we’re practicing may very well nudge out what we don’t want in our lives as a side benefit.
Here’s her exemplary list:
Delights to Cultivate
1. Be a person who wears interesting hats.
2. Lie in the grass whenever possible.
3. Lean toward single-tasking. (That means you Pinterest.)
5. Keep ice water by my desk to inspire hydration (not to inspire klutz moves that might dampen my keyboard or phone).
6. Say positive things about myself (no more predicting future klutz moves).
7. Sigh whenever I want to, because it stimulates the vagus nerve. Ahhhh, that feels good.
8. Go barefoot more often.
10. Use gifts given to me rather than setting them aside for “good.”
11. Develop life lists.
13. Be happy with what I’m getting done rather than focus on what I haven’t accomplished.
14. Go on out-of-the-ordinary dates with my beloved. Maybe I can talk him into glassblowing lessons!
15. Dye my hair pink. Okay, maybe a few streaks.
16. Honor the wisdom found in doing nothing.
Lovely, yes? Fun, no? Delightful? Completely.