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I like pretzels but I never wanted to be one. However, I have always admired folks who took yoga classes. I tried yoga once and it triggered a nasty migraine. My mind might be flexible, but my limbs are not.

Not one to give up, I decided to try again. This time I signed up for a yogalates class at the Red Mountain Multi-Generational Center in my home town of Mesa, AZ. The class is a combination of yoga and Pilates and I love it.

On one of my recent visits the instructor passed out ways to find your “happy place.” Since I’ve written numerous articles about happiness and erasing negativity I’m always  latierrademisamores looking for new insights in the pursuit of happiness.

The article gave six, quick points.
• Smile.
• Stay in the here and now.
• Choose good company.
• Enjoy water surroundings such as a pool, lake, ocean, stream etc.
• Use daily, positive self-affirmation.
• Sing.

When I was younger I sang a lot. I was in an all-girl rock and roll band, I sang in chorus in junior high and high school and even performed in a couple of talent assemblies. As I aged, I continued to sing, but not in public. The exception was when I’d pull out my guitar and sing for my children. One of our favorite songs was an original composition I wrote with my neighbor Debbie Odom about a Little Green Man. I occasionally sing it for my grand daughters, Rosannah and Briannah.

The day I received the article with the six tips for happiness I decided to sing with my favorite preschoolers. However, rather than simply strumming and singing, I joyfully belted out the tune with abandon.

Rosannah and Briannah must have felt the difference in my attitude because they asked for me to sing it again and again. After the third rendition I distracted them with another musical treat. We put away the guitar and banged away on the bongo drums and piano. It was a cacophony of noise, but it was fun. I’m sure we’ll have a repeat performance this week.

No one is going to record our music, but it’s fun to play. Unfortunately most of us become more self-conscious as we grow older and we refuse to sing and perform thinking we are not good enough. While I encourage everyone to sing and dance, I know that is unlikely, so I have an alternative suggestion. Go to a concert. Most communities have free outdoor concerts if you read your local paper or go online.

Hopefully while you are enjoying a concert you will sing along, or at least tap your feet to the beat. That doesn’t exactly count as exercise, but if you smile while listening to the music, that is a very good start.

Sally Marks is a screenwriter, television writer, public speaker, personal coach, author and public relations professional. Visit her website at


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