Facebook Pixel

Throw Some Cheerios--How Doing Something Spontaneous and Silly can Help Us Feel Better

By Blogger
Rate This
Emotional Health related image Photo: Getty Images

If you have too much on your plate (which is just about every one of us), it’s sometimes downright impossible to find that happy face of yours. You know it’s in there, but it’s buried under the weight of that plate. Sometimes you’re so busy and so pressured that you don’t even think about looking for it, much less actually finding it.

This is a true story. A friend of mine has a husband with cancer and two children, 12 and 14, one of whom is having emotional problems because of his dad. That’s just the beginning--she is also dealing with major flood damage to her home, insurance companies, repairs, making a living, and family matters as well. Then there is the normal “mommy” stuff, taking care of the house, food, etc.

The other night she was in the kitchen pouring some Cheerios into a bowl. Her two sons walked in and one of them said “You wouldn’t dare…” Oh, but she did-- she threw a handful of Cheerios at him. Right there in the kitchen! That started a mini-food fight which released a lot of tension and got all three of them laughing.

It was a small thing, really, except that it was “against the rules.” It was mischievous. It was spontaneous. Most of all, it was an impulse and she acted on it. But what about the mess it made? Who’s going to clean it up? You just aren’t supposed to throw food. All of those were good reasons: good reasons to do it! Sometimes it’s good for you to just throw your hands up and say, “What the heck?” and go for it.

Go ahead, walk on the wild side. Do something mischievous, spontaneous, impulsive, “against the rules” of acceptable behavior. Naturally, I’m not encouraging you to break any laws or put yourself or others in physical danger, but rather to do some harmless thing that is both minor but yet out-of-character for you. It’s fun! It will break the tension you feel, it will part the clouds even if only for a few moments.

Here are a few ideas:
1. The next time you are mixing anything in your mixer (cake batter, pancakes, cookie dough, etc.), stop the mixer, remove the bowl with the mix...and stick both hands in it! Smoosh it around between your fingers.
2. Walk in the rain without an umbrella. Slowly.

Add a Comment1 Comments

This really helped me understand how to have fun again. I had finals last month and I was so stressed out! I felt like I had nobody to talk to, but I did. I felt like I had too much going on, but I didn't. Then I took the time to just "mess around" with some of my closest friends, and I felt so much better! Thank you for posting this!

February 19, 2011 - 9:54am
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

Emotional Health

Get Email Updates

Emotional Health Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!