There are dozens of ways. These are just a few of my favorites…

Every now and again, mostly again in these damn Covid days, we all need a pick-me-up, a reason to feel good about ourselves and the world. When you start thinking about running your mask over with your car or drowning your phone or laptop in the tub if it brings you one more piece of bad news, here are a few ideas for bringing yourself back from the brink.

One: Go watch a Special Olympics soccer (or basketball or bocce or….) game. The unbridled joy on the faces of the players will fill you with a pure happiness that lasts for days. My husband and I just returned from watching my son play in the Special Olympics soccer championship in Virginia, and every time we talk about it, we get choked up and giddy. It’s awesome.

The Greater Prince William Special Olympics Soccer Team. Photo by my wonderful husband, Robert

Two: Pay for someone’s groceries at the supermarket, a child’s toy at Target, or for someone’s order at Starbucks. The first time someone did that for me, I was stunned speechless (not a situation I usually find myself in). I felt as if I won the lottery. My whole day was made. So, I got right back in line and paid for the person behind me, and that feeling made my week.

Three: Stock your car with bottles of water and packages of socks and distribute freely to those who approach your car at stoplights.

Photo by Johnstons of Elgin on Unsplash

We might not be able to save all those who are homeless, but we can help keep their feet warm and their bodies hydrated. More importantly, we can let them know we see them, and we care. And that feels good.

Four: Call someone you haven’t spoken to in a long time.

Photo by Hannah Wei on Unsplash

Sure, sure, they could call you too, but so what? Pick up the phone and say hi, how are you, you’ve been on my mind. I do this and yes, I’m frequently hesitant at first, but after five or ten minutes of reconnecting and catching up, I’m refreshed and smiling. And the person I called is, too.

Five: Jot down five things you’re grateful for. Big things. Little things. Funny things.

Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

Sometimes my list starts with “I’m grateful for the fact that I can drown my phone if it doesn’t stop bringing me news that makes me cry.” Whatever it takes to get you started. Because no matter how bad life is, we all have things to be grateful for. Writing them down and rereading them is probably one of the most perfect pick-me-ups in the world.

Like I said, these are just a few of the ways I make myself feel good, fabulous even, when life’s weighing me down. I hope you’ll tell me what picks you up, too.