Making the most of your 365 days
Do your best to do something different every single day, like collecting rocks, wearing mismatched socks or befriending a strangerBy Hannah Nolasco
Philippine Daily Inquirer
It’s no surprise that a majority of us fervently wish for a more thrilling life, one with adventure at every turn, with every single day as unpredictable and astounding as the next. It may sound exhausting, but it also seems a lot more fulfilling and rewarding than living life in a routine manner.
Each year may end with us grateful for the memories and experiences, but deep down inside, are we truly satisfied with how we spend our 12 months every single year?
The highlights of an entire year can often be counted using one or both hands, but hardly ever more than that. The rest of the 365 days are a blur of mundane and identical scenarios that we take for granted, because what’s the use of focusing one’s attention on a day that was just like the rest?
Even occasions as simple as going to the mall and spending time with loved ones become mediocre to us, in spite of the fact that they are considered a break from living each day. I can barely remember much of the details of a year; even the days spent with my friends and family are cloudy, as if my mind has deemed them insignificant. I only recall around four or five events clearly, and a few snippets here and there, but the rest were too uneventful for me to retain.
A friend of mine once advised me to treat each day like an adventure. Do your best to do something different every single day, like collecting rocks, wearing mismatched socks or befriending a stranger. You could fall in love for two hours, change your handwriting for a week, or tie your hair for a month when you usually don’t—anything silly or unusual that can lead to more spontaneous, great things.
That two-hour infatuation could lead to years of romance and happiness, your brand new handwriting could be much better than your previous style, your mismatched socks could be the ice-breaker when you speak to that certain stranger, and maybe your brand new hairstyle will attract the right people.
I tried to do what she had recommended, but I found myself forgetting after a while. It’s quite difficult to remember to do something different every day and turn it into a natural impulse, but what I did realize while trying to add color to my life was that the days that all seemed the same meant me simply functioning on autopilot; I was simply acting on a whim, because I already knew what I had to do, since it had already become an ordinary thing for me.
The days were a blur simply because I was never all there to begin with. Part of me was somewhere far away, wishing for something exciting to happen so that I could feel whole for at least a moment, or hopefully even for the rest of the day. We switch to autopilot on days that are so routine, so regular that there’s nothing new for us to do or react to, and we’ve grown accustomed to so many different routines that hardly anything surprises us anymore.
Life is a lot like a thick blanket of dust; at certain points, something will cause it to rise up and fly wildly in swirls and circles until finally, it loses its momentum and sinks down onto the nearest flat surface. Just the same, from time to time we come across certain situations that make our lives a little more exciting or a little more frightening, events that come in between the normalcy that we’ve been so used to for such a long time. But once that moment has passed, we inevitably return to our daily routine, our nearest flat surface.
Some of us are content with living life on this flat surface, while others purposely create a mess of things in order to refrain from keeping still. But we’re all quite familiar with the notion that all things are best done in moderation, and that’s precisely what I advise you to do: Find ways to create momentous occasions that’ll stick with you for years, or even for the rest of your life.
You can start by trying out new and different things each and every day, or by learning to appreciate every single thing that comes your way, no matter how small they may be. Do your best and relax, while at the same time avoiding succumbing to the boredom of mediocre days; the highlights of life are meant to be rare in order for them to be truly valuable to us, but it doesn’t hurt to try and make every single day eventful, so that every year could be a kaleidoscope of fond recollections.
Sooner or later, as time goes by, you won’t be alternately flying and sinking—you’ll be perpetually floating.