A friend once told me this wonderful story. Her three-year-old son came home feeling defeated after a rough day in preschool. In response, his mother asked him, “If you could do anything you wanted to right now, what would it be?” The little boy answered, “Make banana bread.” So they went to the supermarket, bought the ingredients, and made banana bread. My friend believed that being elbow deep mushing the ingredients by hand and then enjoying the final results lifted her son’s mood.
When I’m having a bad day, I often ask myself the same question: If I could do anything at all, what would it be? (As an adult, I exclude activities that I can’t afford or that will make me gain weight.) Sometimes taking a moment to ask myself this question is useful. If it’s practical, I set aside any matter that can wait and simply try to take care of myself. I’ve said it before: everything important gets done eventually anyway.