When was the last time you had a party in your mind? When was the last time you entered that room that is your mind with a bouquet of balloons, put on some salsa music, and invited all those sad guests slumped here and there to get up and dance? When, that is, did you have some fun in your mind? Not very recently, I’m willing to bet!
We need more mind parties. Most days our mind is a workaday place, a gloomy place, a steam kettle, a piston-driven engine, and not a party venue. Wouldn’t it be fun to decorate? And order a cake? And select a play list? And games! Lots of games! Not just another round of solitaire or a crossword puzzle or a game of Sudoku but something lively, tumultuous and over the top. Like, for instance, mind spin-the-bottle …
Picture someone you loved to kiss. Get that champagne bottle out of the fridge, spin it, and where it points, there he or she is! Permission to kiss granted! Spin it again—oh, now it’s that person. Excellent. Can you do too much kissing at the party in your mind? Not hardly!
Or try this mind party favorite. Invite everyone to tell a story. Select a theme: maybe a great childhood moment, a first travel adventure, or a strange starry night full of awe and wonder. Have the storytellers pass around a talking stick or maybe a talking pretzel. Let anyone pass who is too shy or entranced to speak. Thank each storyteller; and then bring out the cake!
Who will you invite? The lovely thing about a mind party is that no one will turn you down. Invite whomever you like and they will be there! Invite some couples who dance the tango. Invite a top mind in a field you’d love to learn. Invite a hero of yours. Invite an ancestor, maybe that one you’ve heard all those stories about, the one who stole horses or invented the cream puff. Invite you from different epochs and lives. Invite a whole mime troupe or maybe a performance artist who’ll wrap your room in pink yarn. Mix and match to your heart’s content! If anyone bores you or disappoints you, send him or her packing.
A fellow I know is writing a book about lightness. He believes that lightness will save us. We are all so heavy, he feels, we live so heavy, we communicate so heavy, we work so heavy, we even love heavy. Where is the lightness? Where are the marshmallows? Where are the giggles? Where are the summer afternoons? It appears that in order to have that lightness we must create it. It is perhaps a bit of irony and more unfortunate heaviness that we have to create lightness in order to have it, but so be it. Dance time!
You may have some objections. Oh, a party in the mind is too silly. A party in the mind is too frivolous. A party in the mind is a pathetic self-indulgence. A party in the mind is just too goofy. What’s the point? Well, a party in the mind isn’t silly, frivolous, self-indulgent, goofy or pointless. It’s a golden opportunity to lighten up, to smile, to get off the treadmill of mild sorrow that each of us is treading daily.
Then there’s of course that most objectionable objection of all, that somehow you don’t deserve it. As if because you’ve made some messes and tripped here and there you aren’t entitled to joy. What an idea! Who sold you that bill of goods? Imagine a child saying to himself or herself, “I am too bad to deserve a birthday party.” Doesn’t that make you want to weep? Never think such a thing again. Parties in the mind are our eternal birthright!
What’s the favorite party that I throw? It’s a quote party where I invite my favorite quotes to visit. There’s a Tchaikovsky quote about inspiration that I love, a Pavarotti quote about devotion, several Camus quotes (and whole passages), and, well, some of my own quotes, too, where I’ve turned a phrase that I’m happy to remember. I bring out the folding chairs, put up bunting, make cupcakes (quotes love cupcakes), and greet each quote at the door with a really heartfelt greeting, as they are very much cherished. What a lovely time we have!
Your mind needs more joy. Every mind does. A party may be just the ticket. Throw one soon and enjoy the festivities!
This lesson is part of the Your Best Mind Ever series. In this groundbreaking program Dr. Eric Maisel teaches a brand new way to get a grip on our minds.
About the Author
Dr. Maisel is the author of more than 40 books and teaching nationally and internationally at workshop centers like Esalen, Kripalu and Omega and in locations like San Francisco, New York, London and Paris. Learn more about Dr. Maisel’s books, services, workshops and training at www.ericmaisel.com.