April Jeppson: 3 more doctors to bring health to your life

Published 8:45 pm Friday, July 29, 2022

Every Little Thing by April Jeppson

Last week I wrote about the six best doctors: sunshine, water, rest, air, exercise and diet. After some consideration, I’d like to add a few more to the list. I’m a highly sensitive extrovert with a creative nature, so what I need, might not be the ones you need — but maybe they are.

April Jeppson

When I described myself in the previous paragraph, I only used seven words. Two of those words were highly sensitive. I’ve known my entire life that I’m sensitive and get my feelings hurt pretty easily. However, what I’m talking about is a different kind of sensitivity. 

When I first moved into our home, the family room walls were a pleasant beige with wood flooring. We were given a brown leather couch and my mother had purchased neutral tan curtains for us. I needed a rug for the space and found a really cool shag one for a reasonable price. I wasn’t tickled with the color (it was brown), but I loved how fluffy it was under my feet. 

Six months into this setup, I found myself not enjoying my time in this space. It took awhile to realize that the colors in the room were literally bumming me out. 

I started looking at rugs online and was drawn to a certain style. I loved the bright flowers that almost looked like they were painted with watercolor. Looking at this rug actually made me happy. I purchased it and almost immediately enjoyed the space more. I got lighter curtains and eventually painted the lower half of the walls a gorgeous raspberry shade. It’s now my favorite room in my home. 

Ever since then I’ve been very aware of my surroundings. It isn’t just the color of the room. It’s the music in the background and the volume it’s set at. It’s the conversations people are having and the tone of their voices. Smells, textures — all of it affects me. Since I can’t control how others decorate, their style of music or even the things they talk about, I do my best to control what I can. 

Music is a huge mood changer for me. Upon further inspection, I’m actually surprised that it wasn’t on the original list of doctors. If I’m having an off day or need a pick-me-up, music is the first thing that I go to. I have multiple play lists on my phone for various moods that I’m in or trying to get into. Happy, energetic, party, get ready, sing loud, shower songs. Sometimes I need to listen to a cheesy pop song from the ’90s to turn my frown upside down. Other moments I need to sing as loud as a can without fear that anyone will make fun of me. 

Another that helps is having a creative outlet. Sometimes this means that I actually have to draw or paint something. Other times, I need to journal. Having this weekly column is actually really therapeutic for me. It forces me to use my creative energy on a regular basis and sometimes that is exactly what I need. I found something as simple as rearranging furniture or polishing my nails also helps. 

Lastly, time with friends and loved ones. I have individuals in my life that fill my cup. When I’m feeling depleted, these relationships always help replenish my soul. It can be a phone call or a lunch date, but the result is the same. I feel better. 

Albert Lean April Jeppson is a wife, mom, coach and encourager of dreams. Her column appears every Saturday.