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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

How to Get Out of Life Laughing

To Darling Sue with Affection

The Lord begets, and the Lord begot,
A Lower Ott and a Higher Ott,
But of all the Otts that the Lord begot,
The best of all is a Meyerott.
Who? Sue!

Mack David

Take Life Seriously and Yourself Lightly

Ever since the late 1970's, when American lyricist and songwriter, Mack David (who was sitting in a workshop of mine at UCLA) popped out this silly ditty and gifted it to me I've had an amusing image of two characters--a 'Lower Ott' and a 'Higher Ott'--residing inside me dictating whether I take a 'higher' or 'lower' view on myself and life. 

The 'Higher Ott' is my easy-going and empowered adult self who is gracious, generous, trusting, lighthearted, forgiving, creative, compassionate, kind, and smart. She doesn't take herself too seriously and she is amused by life.

The 'Lower Ott' is my childish 'chastised-by-life' self who takes herself seriously, holding on to feelings of betrayal, bitterness and disappointment as she holds onto the past chastising her for mistakes, failures or wrong-doing. 

The 'Lower Ott' is not amused, period. Living as the 'Lower Ott' is serious business with serious consequences. It is clearly a non-productive and not-fun stuck state of mind. 

Luckily I don't like residing in my 'Lower Ott' for long so I jump out as quickly as I can and this makes all the difference in my enjoying life more.

The key to getting out of life laughing is to take life seriously but yourself lightly. 

As we all have times when we retreat into our lower 'take-ourselves-too-seriously' selves this means we must find ways to step back up to functioning as our best and higher selves.

The minute we drop down into our 'lower-base-selves' we'll see life as dangerous, unfriendly and unforgiving and we react in kind.  Not a very easy or empowering place to live. 

So what is the key to finding a way to get out of our lower self sooner into the more empowered, higher functioning self? Create an amusing picture.

Who should I put in charge of my life--
the Lower Ott or the Higher Ott? 
Hmm...that's a hard one...

Create a Simple Amusing Picture of Your Lower and Higher Self 

You might say Mack David, who I only met briefly, became one of my life muses helping me take my life seriously but myself less so. 

In five minutes of musing he wrote something that went on to influence and amuse me for the next 40 years. With the flip of his pen, he provided me with a simple amusing picture of my lower and higher self I can clearly envision when I fall into my less-than-desirable serious and stuck self.

I laugh at myself every time I find myself reciting the ditty. And when I fall into my 'Lower Ott' self, my personal poem from Mack faithfully appears in my head and I find myself singing it, smiling and lightening up. 

Frankly, it's hard to take my lower self too seriously when I think that the man who created the 'Lower Ott' image for me is also responsible for writing such silliness as 'Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo' for Cinderella and 'The Unbirthday Song' for Alice in Wonderland. I share his silly view of life so imagining the difference between my two Otts lightens my outlook so I can move on.

To make it easier to move from taking yourself seriously to taking yourself lightly create a simple amusing image of your lower and higher self.

Look Outside Yourself for a Muse 

If you aren't naturally inclined to taking a lighter view of yourself, it helps to look outside yourself for a muse to spur you on and inspire you to see differently and with amusement.

What is a muse and why should you have one? 

A muse is a person or being who acts as a source of inspiration for a creative artist. But before you disregard that as not applying to you, consider we are all creative artists looking for inspiration for the best way to get out of life laughing.

We are all creative artists looking for inspiration for the best way to get out of life laughing.
Mack made the perfect muse. He was a funny, creative and silly man--writing lyrics and/or music to over 1000 songs to uplift  and help us access our sillier, more trusting HIGHER selves. 

As I was a forever lover of musicals and Disney animated cartoons who has always had a musical living in my head I was already susceptible to his influence when I met him. 

But I was also open to looking for muses--or people who could inspire and influence me--to be my best and who would help me access the lighter side of life even when I'm down.

Stay open to muses to guide you to a lighter way to do life. They are all around you.

A Musing on Muses and Amusing

"The Muses were the nine Greek goddesses who presided over the arts (including music) and literature. A shrine to the Muses was called in Latin a museum. An artist or poet about to begin work would call on his particular Muse to inspire him, and a poem itself might begin with such a call; thus, Homer's Odyssey begins, "Sing to me of the man, Muse" (that is, of Odysseus). Today a muse may be one's special creative spirit, but some artists and writers have also chosen living human beings to serve as their muses."
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Be on the Look Out for Your Muses

We all want to get out of life laughing and living from our higher, better selves. We all can benefit from the Muses inspiration to help us figure out how to take life seriously but ourselves lightly. 

Our Muses are out there, but we must keep an eye out for them. 

💓Who or what would you like to influence and uplift you? 
💙Who would your Muse(s) be? 
💚What kind of influence would you like in your life? 
💛What makes you laugh? Who or what amuses you?
💜Who or what keeps you from taking yourself too seriously? 

No matter where your past has led you so far--take time to find a muse and allow yourself to be influenced to lighten up. 

Choose to accept an outside source of inspiration that helps you keep an upbeat attitude and inspires you to find ways to take positive action to move your life forward. Be forward looking and acting to become the person you desire to be, living the life you wish to enjoy.

A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes

From Cinderella

'A dream is a wish your heart makes when you're fast asleep.

In dreams you'll lose your heartaches; 
Whatever you wish for, you keep. 

Have faith in your dreams --
And someday your rainbow will come smiling through. 

No matter how your heart is grieving 
if you keep on believing the dream that you wish will come true!'

Mack David

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For more than 35 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes letting go and moving forward with life easier than ever before.

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