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Hear me scream

​​​​Step by step. Welcome to the child's world of happiness and energy.

Check out this short video of my screaming.

Related links:

Enchanting

Undoing fear

Who and how are the happiest people?

Who are the best and most natural screamers in the world?

Who are, as a category of people, the happiest and most energetic people in the world?

Same answer: young children (think mostly between the ages of 18 months and five years).

Starting around the age of five or six, children begin to get the message, "It's not good to scream. You should start paying attention to how others will think of you when you express yourself." Low and behold, by the age of seven, children have become these young adults. They have learned to self-censor, to keep whatever inside, unless it's able to satisfy their internal censor.

Generally, children above the age of seven (that includes all us adults) are not nearly as happy and energetic as those under five.

How can we be as happy as children?

We adults are not able to revert to being kids again. Even if we could, we would be giving up the many benefits of being an adult. 

Fortunately, we can tap into those benefits of being a kid by using (in a measured way) those natural behaviors that help keep kids so happy and energetic in the first place. Screaming is one of those ways. (Also see Enchanting.)

How to scream it out

My current routine is to scream three minutes a week (in nine, 20-second bursts). I do three each day on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

Let me be clear. I'm not talking about namby-pamby screaming. While taking care not to damage your throat, give it all you've got for 20 seconds. For many of us, this will be a choice of courage, regardless of whether anyone may hear you. Scream as if your life (or someone else's life) depended on how loudly you screamed. Personally, I challenge myself to scream using only one deep breath (not taking another breath during the 20-second scream). To help you get started, you might use undoing fear with the sentence, "Holy cats and jeepers creepers, I am so scared I will feel silly by doing this screaming stuff."

Don't believe me. Check this out for yourself. Super scream for 20 seconds and then notice how you feel better after than you did before.

 

I know that you've been thinking, "But what about the neighbors? What about the people I live with (if you do)?"

Here are some ways (or a combination of ways) to handle this issue. But note, even after you handle the other-people-hearing-me issue, you'll still need to choose courage to do this, especially at the beginning.

 

  • First, use a pillow; scream into a pillow. This will muffle the sound considerably.

  • Second, choose times for the screaming when others are out of the house or neighbors are likely to be away.

  • Third, tell you housemates about the practice and ask them to indulge you, maybe by giving them a heads-up when you're about to scream.

  • Fourth, for any neighbors who might overhear you, either speak to them in person or on the phone, or put a note under their door. Explain that you're doing a "health assignment" that involves making a loud sound for 20 seconds from time to time and that they should give you a call (make sure they have your number) in case they notice it and it bothers them. It goes without saying, that consulting with your housemates or neighbors in this way can also be a choice of courage. Honor yourself for that.

PS. If you're sometimes willing to "go that extra breath," it's well documented that we can enhance the health of our lungs and body by occasionally "exhaling to the limit." On occasion, I've been able to scream (using one exhalation) for up to 35 seconds.