By Amy Kernan
I had someone tell me the other day that they enjoyed my show because I always sound so happy on the air. This was a huge compliment and accurate because when I’m on the air, I’m immensely happy and always moved by the people who take time to call in or text me throughout the show. Even when I’ve had a rough start to my day, I’m still excited to get in the studio and talk to the people in the community and hopefully make them laugh and smile so their day goes a little better.
With that being said, I’m not always so cheery and full of sunshine. I go home each day and sometimes I just stare out my window and think about things in the past or present that don’t make me feel good. Sometimes I’m that person with road rage who just wants to get around the corner to my apartment and not have to wait for the person in front of me to pick up the pace. Sometimes I’m that person with zero patience when it comes to bad customer service or with people who call me ‘hon’ or ‘sweetie’ when my own mother never even called me that… Sometimes I’m just a massive WITCH!
Over the years though, I’ve learned how to curb the nasty voice inside of me by telling it “HEY! I don’t want to be a witch today! I want to smile and enjoy the day!” It took a lot of patience for my rational brain to come my rescue before I said or did something very stupid or downright cruel. Eventually it got easier to tell myself to knock off the crap but that’s also thanks to getting older and growing up. The older I get, the more grateful I am to be here and the more I appreciate those around me and what they’re going through.
As a matter of fact, that’s how I curb my grumpy attitude most of the time; I ask myself “what if they’re having a bad day too?” Once I ask that question, I snap out of the bad vibe and that’s so important.
We live in such an ugly time right now. Some people don’t have a care in the world as to whom they hurt. Social media is divisive and at times downright mean with group threads turning into verbal assaults even if it’s merely someone innocently asking a question. I’ve left Facebook over the years because of trolls and concerns for my own mental health and though it really does help, I always end up coming back to it and seeing the same intolerance, anger, and unbridled cruelty… why do I keep coming back?! Because I like being connected to the kind people, the nice people who post pictures of cats or funny memes. I try to stay away from comment threads now because I can’t stand trolls (and I often wonder how they can stand themselves!) Seriously, stop reading the comment threads on major stories! It’ll change your life!
We tend to mimic what we see throughout the day. The hardest part of living most days is just trying to maintain a positive attitude but it can be done. For me, I just try to get some quick perspective and then slap a smile on my face and try to nudge others to do the same. I try to mimic what happiness looks like in my mind’s eye. From there, it only takes a little effort and soon enough, I’m meaning what I say and saying what I mean and I’m smiling on the inside as well as the outside.
I realize some people really just want to remain negative. I avoid those people whenever possible. Feeling good and spreading positivity feels as good as a great workout or a long walk with a good friend. I highly recommend trying a little positivity at least once a day. I’m no doctor but I promise you that it works.
Amy Kernan is the morning show host on KWPC-The Voice of Muscatine.