Every day for two years, I listened to the song Proud, the 2001 worldwide hit by Heather Small and M People. When Heather sang the lyric, What have you done today to make you feel proud? I answered. Each time with something I’d done that day, which made me feel that way.
At first, I floundered. She’d sing, What have you done today to make you feel proud? And I’d choke. Which is precisely why I persisted in the practice.
I first heard the song in 2010. Its message lifted me. And that voice. All silk cocoa and rum. I bought the MP3. Played it over and over and over again while recovering from a long-term bought of clinical depression. When I stumbled after each of Heather’s queries – What have you done today to make you feel proud? – my hesitancy inspired daily focus on doing just that.
By the time I was able to answer – 11 times – in a span of the song’s three and a half minutes without falter, I had already entered a newly rewarding stage of life.
Every time Heather sings that line, answer. If you can’t, you’ve learned something about how you’ve spent your day, and how you might live it the next.