Thursday, 23 June 2011

10 things M. should do to feel alive again

A good friend of mine confessed a couple of weeks ago that he’s having a not so good time at work and it saps much of his energy. It’s difficult to dissociate work from the more important parts of life. He asked me to suggest 10 things that could make him feel alive once he’d done them. Here we go:
  1. Remember that delicious dish you had at a restaurant in some big city last year? Learn how to cook it. Research and practice until it looks and tastes perfect.
  2. What are the skills you poses? Are you good at what you do? Look around and pick an absolutely (or almost) new skill for you. Knit. Solder. Plaster. Master it.
  3. How does your home reflect your personality? Did you put a lot of thought in furnishing and decorating or did you rent your apartment fully furnished? Craft something for your home. A lamp, candlesticks, ingenious bookshelves – anything goes!
  4. Read that book!
  5. At your age with your life and professional experience you carry a load of priceless information that others need. And the gross of that information is just sitting there at the back of your head, doing nothing all day. Put it to use. Write an article on any topic. Then publish it.
  6. Help someone. For real. Don’t just give them a good advice (however useful). Go into trouble of actually doing things for them. Provided they’ll be really better off if you do it for them - solve as much of their problem as you can by yourself.
  7. Have you lost contact with somebody? Somebody who you’d rather not lose? Invite them to come and visit you. Make sure you have enough spare time to show them as much of the country as you can. If they cannot come, go visit them.
  8. Art gives you energy, you knew that, right? Look up an art exhibition or a theatre play you’d like to see. Think of the art first. The place doesn’t matter. It could be anywhere in the world. Book a flight, arrange a hotel and go.
  9. Carnivals make you feel alive! Choose one (Italy, Brazil, wherever), arrange the trip AND a costume! Go!
  10. Fall in love.
Dear M.,

I hope you feel inspired by this list and even if you choose to do just one thing, please do it with dedication. Put your hart to it. And I hope you’ll feel refuelled and happy just like your old self.



The Shins - New Slang


  1. Sasja (or Sahsa?)

    Many thanks for a beautiful post. It's a great lesson in how writing for a single person can provide content which touches many. I've used 1,3,4,5,6,7 & 10 to great effect (as well as something very similar to #9).

    And as I feel the euphoric echoes of echoes of these actions, I'm a little emotional. In a really really good way. And I'm reading this after a busy 12 hour shift.

    I really hope M. heeds your list.

    Thank you.


  2. I enjoyed this... it's definitely not just another list post... you encourage empathy with your friend and your words really hit home... it's easy to forget that these relatively 'quick fixes' are at our disposal when we're feeling sapped of energy.

    Thank you for sharing this.

    ~Nikki xo


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