My favorite mood enhancer is – hands down- movement. I’ve always been active and welcoming endorphin rushes since I was a kid. Back then I was a tree climbing, kick-balling, bun-headed ballerina. As an adult, I became a professional dancer, aerial artist and Pilates teacher. But I don’t move for the feel-good hormone hits alone. I do it for the confidence boost too. Any movement practice that requires progressive skill-building through repetition, dedication and time creates an “I can” mentality. And nothing fuels my mood more than feeling like a badass. Plus, my movement practice allows me to completely shut out the external world to focus on learning, growing, and transforming. And I always re-emerge with a positive and productive growth mindset that’s ready to face the world.
As much as I love moving my own body, I get ridiculous amounts of joy from teaching Pilates and helping others explore their own movement potential too. Every time my students have an “Aha!” moment there’s a little victory dance that takes place inside of me too. Seeing them light up from that “I can” feeling is absolutely incomparable. And to be a facilitator of that is da bomb!
But before teaching or my own movement practice happens, my first pick-me-up of the day is a hot cup of cacao. Nope, not coffee – cacao; which is roasted, ground, and brewed just like coffee and packed with superfoods and natural mood enhancers. Another fave is mid-day breaks in Fort Greene park to people/dog watch or chat with a friend. I also look forward to FaceTime chats with my out-of-state BFFs.
And I will always turn to the pages of my journal to enhance my mood. Even on days when the stuff that emerges seems dark, negative and hopeless; it’s no longer there to fester inside. Writing usually gives me the freedom of clarity.