I’ve never been one to get easily caught up in things or emotions. To put it bluntly, I’m actually quite the pessimist. Realistic is what I like to call it. However, I always consider that “x-factor” – that nameless thing that somehow changes you even just for a moment from a pessimist to something a bit lighter. Let me explain. Sometimes it’s hard to put into words what you really think, why you do things a certain way, or why you feel so strongly about something. If someone were to question you on it, you just stumble around trying to find the right words, but they don’t come. But every so often, you’ll encounter the x-factor. It can be something so simple, so magical that it all seems to make sense, even though you can’t explain it and you don’t care that you can’t explain it.
I’ve had two encounters with the x-factor lately. One is Christmas. I absolutely love this time of year. It’s as if the string of white lights around your door changes your entire approach to life for just a short time. What is it about lights that is so mesmerizing? They’re so beautiful, and they make everything look happy and bright. People even seem nicer and more cheery during the Christmas season. Every year I think of my fond childhood memories of the holidays filled with Disney characters, staying in your pajamas all day, and loads of excitement. Things weighing heavy on you seem lighter, natural joy and happiness come a bit easier, and you generally take things less seriously. It’s nice to have that break period. I think I would like to keep my Christmas lights up all year. There must be something magical within them.
The other encounter with the x-factor came with the simple phrase from a friend I heard this week, “Music is the closest thing to magic we have in this life.” I was taken back by the simplicity of the phrase and yet how it carries something so strong. Think about how you feel when you’re favorite song is played. It changes you for the moment. You know what I’m talking about. You’re driving down the road, frustrated and busily trying to sort through your thoughts. Then all of a sudden, a song you love comes on. Maybe it’s a classic song, an oldie but a goodie. Perhaps it’s a jazz tune that calms you down. Or maybe it’s a new pop song that you just can’t help but love even if it’s just for the moment (such as “One Time” by Justin Bieber – I totally dig this YouTube sensation turned teen pop star). There is some magical factor that creeps in completely changing your thought process, mood, and even cares at the moment. Things you had been obsessing about seem simple, and you breathe a a little easier. I think there’s something totally awesome in music for this fact. Wouldn’t it be cool to carry around a playlist of all your favorite songs and cue them at the right moment for when you needed them most? Sounds a bit like something out of the movies. Or maybe that’s why the iPod was really invented.
So my question to you is, what is your x-factor? What offers a little magic to your life?