kristina leonardi
Feb 1, 2019 · 4 min read
Photo credit: Kristina Leonardi

While making a purchase last week, I must have been subconsciously but overtly enjoying Pharrell Williams’ snappy tune which was playing on the store’s sound system. The cashier, a young gal probably not more than 21, asked me “Why do all adults love this song?

Ahhh, youth. First off, I needed to comprehend the fact that I was one of those “adults” she was referring to, which took me a minute because I think I’m 25…She continued, “Yeah, my mom and aunts and all their friends get into it whenever it comes on.”

The uplifting, catchy anthem could not have been released at a better time, after one of the harshest winters on record and accompanying the spring forward of our clocks signaling the imminent arrival of brighter days and warmer weather.

But I think the real gift is its simplicity — its airy, carefree, innocent vibe and powerful lyrics. It cuts through all the heavy stuff we deal with and are responsible for and asks our inner child to dance a little inside and out. Because let’s face it, we all need a break from the warmongering, negative TV shows/movies/video games, political bickering, and multitude of challenges modern life presents us “adults” with on a daily basis — even if it’s for only 3:52 minutes.

A friend of my mom’s who I’ve known over 25 years saw me recently, and with a very perplexed look and completely serious tone asked, “When are you going to start aging?”

I just chuckled. I suppose good genes and moisturizer play a part, but I really attribute it to my frame of mind and lifestyle — I have learned to take care of myself physically and spiritually, and have the tools and discipline to manage my stress (trust me, there is plenty!). I honor and process my emotions, think positive thoughts, and do my best to live in the present and go with the flow, listening to my deepest self and paying attention to the world around me. I operate from my heart (and gut) not my head and value quality over quantity in relationships.

I realize that I am on a journey, and as long as I’m learning and growing and being of service, I am doing something right. I am creative and know how to relax. I’m a practical idealist. I laugh often and cry just as much, if not more. I love. I am committed to being as authentic, balanced and centered as I can be, knowing I’m not “perfect” and that’s OK: I take one day at a time and understand that every problem is an opportunity in disguise, as hard as that might seem to believe in the moment. I am grateful. And lastly, I shake my booty to groovy tunes as much as possible. So yes, I choose to be Happy, because happiness is the truth — and one of the keys to youth.

Need a little help figuring out what happiness is to you? Give me a buzz and I’ll have you clapping along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do. I’ll be there to guide you one step at a time, and make it so can’t nothin’ gonna bring you down! Yeah.

[Fun fact: I had a truly magical interaction with Pharrell (my number one celebrity encounter, and I’ve had a lot) on a NYC sidewalk exactly 6 months after I wrote this PGG and got to give him a HUGE hug and thank him for the joy he inspired all over the world, since it became a global phenomenon that you can see on YouTube.]

Originally published on www.kristinaleonardi.com on March 11,2014.


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