Over the weekend at the SIBA conference, where publishers and bookmakers displayed their wares, I saw a lot of beautiful adult coloring books (apparently those are very in right now) and a lot of beautiful writing journals. One such journal was called The 60-Second Memory Journal: A Yearlong Happiness Chronicle. Each page was divided into Morning and Night with morning questions such as “I will make it a good day by…” and evening questions such as “Today I really enjoyed…”
I thought this was a nice idea, and similar to the daily exercise of “three happy things” described by Shawn Achor in his book The Happiness Advantage. (See my post about that.) For a while I was trying to jot down three things that made me happy each day, but for some reason, I wasn’t able to stick to the habit. Maybe because I was typing them in a Word document instead of writing them in a beautiful journal…
The 60-Second Memory Journal made me decide to try again. I like the idea of setting a positive tone for the day, and I like the idea of flipping back through a year and seeing all of the little things that made me happy. So I took a mostly-empty journal and put it on my nightstand, next to my retainer. The plan is to write one or two sentences in the morning along the lines of “Last night I dreamed…” or “Today I’m looking forward to…” and then a few more at night like “Tonight I am thankful for…” or “Something that made me laugh today was…” As of now, I’ve done it for two days, and I’m hoping to make it a habit.
On Tuesday evening I wrote in my 60-Second Journal, “Today it made me happy when Ally said I have a nice voice and should host a podcast.”
Let me back up. On Tuesday I met my friend Allyson (“Ally”) in downtown DC, and we headed to dinner. She was telling me how she needs to buy a new car and is not looking forward to the stress of car shopping. “Sorry,” she said. “This is all I can think about. It’s all I’ve been saying to anyone – just moaning about having to buy a new car.”
“No, that’s good,” I said. “You should tell everyone, and then maybe someone will have a good lead or be like, oh, here’s a car for you.”
(This really can work. Back when I lived in New Orleans, I was moaning about how my car was dying, and a girl I worked with said, “my dad has a car he’s looking to sell,” and that was that.)
“Yeah, exactly,” Ally said. “I just need to put it out there.”
I was about to say “the squeaky wheel gets the oil,” but that wasn’t exactly right. Is there an idiom that means “how can anyone help you if you don’t say what you’re looking for?”
Later, as Ally and I were walking back to the metro and giving each other podcast recommendations, she said, “I was thinking the other day that you have this nice, soothing voice, and you like to tell stories. I could totally see you hosting your own podcast.”
I literally started jumping up and down with excitement. “Oh my gosh! You are not the first person to tell me this, and maybe this is a sign — maybe this means I really need to do it!”
I had been told essentially the same thing (soothing voice and all) over the summer, and since I’ve always secretly wanted to host a radio show or podcast, I started looking into it. I even had a great idea for what my podcast would be about.
But then I realized there’s technology involved. And research. And marketing, especially if I want to try to get sponsors and possibly make a little money. It seemed like too complicated of a venture for me to try on my own.
But now, with Ally bringing it up out of the blue… maybe I shouldn’t toss out the idea altogether. Maybe, what I need is some help. A partner, perhaps. It’s too overwhelming to jump into podcasting on my own, but if I had a partner who knew about technology and could help with the research and the marketing. Or even if I helped someone else with their podcast for a while and learned how it was done.
“I mean, I love stories and I love to talk,” I told Ally. “It’s a great fit.”
And that’s when I realized: I just need to put it out there. And what better way to put something “out there” than to put it on the Internet?
So, universe, I have an announcement: Ally needs a car, and I would like a podcast partner.
After all, how can anyone help us if we don’t say what we’re looking for? Maybe this should be one of the morning prompts in my 60-Second Memory Journal: “Today I am looking for…,” and start out the day with the assumption that someone, somewhere, will help me find it.