I’ll be honest–I bought an actual drone. It probably arrived around 5 months ago and since then, I got it out of the box, fired it up once and then, just haven’t had the time to sit down and learn how to use it.
Oh, I have plans. It does cool things and has a built-in camera. That means, for clients or whatever reason, I can get aerial shots of a business or even my own home. Before the end of the summer, I plan to teach myself how the darn thing works.
In the meantime, as I glance over again at that device collecting dust on the office coffee table, I thought, “You know, we all have the opportunity to fly a mental drone over our memories. Shut off the news, turn off all your devices and go up for a spin. Take that 3,000-foot-level look at your life’s events and see which ones pop up in your mind. We’ve each had thousands, perhaps millions of incidents and experiences, good and bad. Every single one of those played a part, no matter how small, in how you became the person you are right now.
I just fired up my mental drone and looked down. I see the time our radio show traveled to Japan and got to broadcast live from there for a week. What an experience. It’s cool to see Alice again. There was the time I got to interview one of my idols, the late Steve Allen and ask him questions about how he did what he did. Because his mind was always going 100 mph, he carried around a mini-cassette recorder so he could capture a passing idea or revelation. While I’m in the KOMO building, there’s Lar–Larry Nelson–and the weather guy, Ray Ramsey!
I push down the forward handle on the remote control and find myself over a campground in California around the year 1970. I was going through the teenage thing and old enough to wander away from the family trailer and explore. More than once, I heard some campsite playing music, cranked up enough that we could all enjoy that year’s song of the summer, The Carpenter’s “Close to You.”
For fun, I go back a little further and see the old neighborhood gang, with whom I spent hours playing tennis ball baseball. It was a time when the currency was baseball cards. A nickel a pack and you’d get 10 cards plus a stale piece of bubble gum that lost its flavor after three chews. If the modern day me could just go back and talk to that 14-year-old kid one more time, I’d say, “Look–enjoy this! You have no worries at all right now. Don’t be in such a hurry to grow up!”
I heard an interesting concept the other day on the radio and I’m doing my best to implement it into my life. John Curley on KIRO was talking about this speaker who encouraged you to think often about the moments in your life that made you really happy. The idea is, when you go back to that moment of real happiness, it triggers a chemical change in your body. So, while you’re mentally enjoying happy thoughts, your body is enjoying the physical benefits of what happens when you’re positive and in a good place. Conversely, if you think negative, it does not do your body any good.
In other words, do everything in your power to keep it positive. Think positive. Be positive. At first, like water skiing, it could take a while to get up there, but I can tell you–once you’re there, it’s pretty easy to stay there. However, you do have to make an active effort to keep it going.
Man, you look around and there are SO many negative influences surrounding us–on the news, the media, the Internet, our world…and they’re all waiting to take you down with them. The bad is definitely there, but also, so is the good. And if you think it might take a mental drone to help you find it, I’ll lend you mine.