to Out on a Limb,
a monthly newsletter from Martha Clark Scala. This free e-zine
is meant to invite and inspire you to maximize the joy in
Ainít Nothiní Like
For years, each monthly Out on a Limbhas provided two links to a humorous, touching or inspirational video clip that is intended as your Prompt for Joy. If you would like to see some of the oldies but goodies, go first to this page at my website, and navigate your way to all of the links that, as far as I know, are still active. Guaranteed entertainment! You may also see funny, moving or motivational clips if you are involved in social networks such as Facebook or Instagram as folks post links to all kinds of media as part of their sharing. But what if you live your entire life on a computer and the last thing you want to do when it is time to have fun or access some joy, is stare at the computer? Well, I have another Prompt for Joy for you.
How would you complete a sentence that begins with “Ain’t nothin’ like?” There is something about this phrase, poor grammar included, which announces expression of something that gives us joy. Try it. Start first by completing the sentence with just one word:
Ain’t nothin’ like lilacs! Ain’t nothin’ like brownies! Ain’t nothin’ like mountains! Pasta, swimming, grandchildren, reading, painting, dancing! (Exclamation points intended!!!) See what I mean? I guarantee you will finish that sentence with something joyful.
Moving on, how about completing the sentence with more specific details?: Ain’t nothin’ like a vase of fresh lilacs on the dining room table. Jan’s awesome brownies with espresso in them. The amazing Alps. Seafood linguini with lots of garlic. Swimming at a not-so-turbulent ocean beach!
It may be hard to replace or reproduce a more specific “Ain’t nothin’ like.” For example, Jan is not in my kitchen right now, I am not in Switzerland, and I no longer live where I can step outside to pick fresh lilacs. If that specific joy is unavailable to you right now, it might induce joy just to imagine or picture it. It also might help you identify what you would like to do soon! To stay with the above examples, I could use Jan’s recipe and make the brownies in my own kitchen. Or I could consider a trip to a location where ocean swimming is more of a possibility. The purpose of the “Ain’t nothin’ like” prompt is to help you remember the sources of joy that are specifically unique to you because no one is a better expert on what will work well for you. You might love Jan’s brownies, too, but you also might be allergic to chocolate, or diabetic, or on a serious diet.
There are endless variations on this Prompt. You could finish this sentence with places, people, things, food, or activities. If you want to embellish, you can attempt a sentence that incorporates many of these categories. It will more than likely add up to a scenario that pleases.
Ainít nothiní like a warm summer afternoon by the ocean with family or close friends, a comfortable beach chair, chilled lemonade in the cooler or accessible nearby, and a long swim in rolling waves. The longer the sentence, perhaps the harder to replicate, but it really helps you identify where or how to go about getting more joy back in your life. Whatís your Ainít nothiní like ?
Your June 2015 Prompts for Joy
Click here for an “Ain’t nothin’ like” scenario for a moose family. (Thank you, Claudette Bergman!)
Click here because there ain’t nothin’ like a mud bath. (Thanks, Akaya Windwood!)
All previous Prompts for Joy (PFJs) can be found at my website, unless the video url is no longer functional.
Joy-Gram for June 2015
Ain’t nothin’ like: finish the sentence! And then see if you can give yourself the gift of what you have written or remembered.
By no means
do I have joy “figured out.” Please do not assume
that I do! I write Out On a Limb as much as a meditation for
myself in the ongoing pursuit of joy, as for you. I think this
pursuit is a lifelong journey and that the full experience
of joy is, at best, episodic. May we all have more episodes!
Martha Clark Scala, MFT · 721 Colorado Ave., Suite 201, Palo Alto, CA 94303 ·