Monday, February 1, 2010

Monday Motivation: More energy drainers

Last week we talked about energy drainers within our own bodies. This week the Monday Motivation is all about external energy drainers. You know, those things surrounding us that suck us dry.

I'll list them according to the five senses.

Sight: What our eyes see when we walk into a room affects our mood. Color, lighting, texture, proportion, scale. Our eyes take it all in and process it. Even when we don't purposely think about it. Harsh overhead lighting is unpleasant whereas warm lamplight or candlelight make us feel cozy. Certain colors can make us feel happy, hungry, angry, or peaceful. Slick surfaces make us think of clean, cool, and organized. Textured surfaces can seem warm, cozy, or rough. Proportion and scale are hard to describe, but definitely affect our senses. If items are too large or too small for the room, we feel out of balance. Clutter all over the house affects our emotions too. It can make you feel like too many things are left undone. Things don't have to be perfect, just picked up.

Sound: Every one's personality dictates the kinds of sounds they enjoy being around. With sound options we often think of music. Some like it soft, some like it loud. Some music is energizing, some is sedating. Some homes have the television on all of the time. After a while the noise blends in to the background but for some it can be very distracting. My favorite sound in our home is in the spring when I open the windows and hear the bird's (wren's) singing. Well, actually that is my second favorite. My all time favorite is the sound of my family's voices.

Smell: The scent of dinner cooking is one of my favorite smells. Unless I'm cooking collards or fish! Scents arouse emotions in us. Depending on the person, a scent can be pleasant or unpleasant. Smells can transport us back to our childhood or other events in our past. There are certain smells that still make me feel sick because they made me sick during my pregnancies. I just can't stand them anymore. Other scents irritate us for other reasons. Stinky garbage or diaper pails mean we need to take care of something immediately! On the other hand, who doesn't love the smell of a freshly bathed baby. There's nothing like it on the face on the earth.

Touch: Touch can give us comfort or leave us feeling cold. Stepping out of the shower into a fluffy towel, wrapping up in a quilt, or enjoying the smoothness of your favorite pearl necklace bring different feelings than stepping on a cold tile floor or sliding between rough sheets when you get into bed. The touch of our family is also important. Some families are more "touchy" than others but never be afraid to reach out and touch those you love. Even when your children become older, they still need hugs and pats on the back. If you have furniture you don't like, think about what you don't like about it. Is it how it feels on your skin? How about your bedroom? Do the fabrics you use in your bedroom make you feel good?

Taste: My favorite! The foods we provide for our family nourish their bodies as well as their emotions. We've heard people say "this is just like my mom use to make". You don't have to be a great cook to provide good taste and nourishment for your family. Food is only a part of what your family will remember about dinner time. They'll remember if you sat down together and if you complained about having to prepare it for them. Taste and smell are closely related. Just the smell of something cooking makes people anticipate the meal ahead. Greet your family, if you can, with good smells from the kitchen as they arrive home at the end of the day.

Let's recap. . .

Sight: orderly or chaotic
Sound: pleasant voices or blaring television
Smell: stinky garbage or clean smelling
Touch: soft towel or cold floor
Taste: comfort food or bland meal

Whatever choices you make for your home, choose ones that mean "home" for you and your family. After all, home should be our place of rest and rejuvenation.

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