Everyone wants to be That Girl – cool, calm, collected without ever trying too hard to be cool, calm, or collected. But nobody is as laid-back and effortlessly cool as a bossa nova song playing in a hotel lobby on a warm summer’s day: the ultimate definition of smooth and self-assured. If you’ve ever been in an elevator or on hold with your internet provider and thought “Wow I love the vibes this music is putting out,” here’s how to channel your inner bossa nova – even though you’ll never unwind or be as mellow as the lovechild of soft samba beats and American jazz.
Step one in being effortless? Stop putting in effort. Tune out your thoughts and let your inner beat drive you. An ex texting you after ghosting you for eight months? Shut it off. Intrusive thoughts about whether you left all four burners running in your kitchen? Cease and desist. Existential realization that your parents’ emotional neglect is the root cause of all your relationships ending? Push it down. Instead, try to embody the relaxation of rhythmic Latin drums and hypnotic dulcet guitar. And yes, swaying is encouraged.
Lounge. Lounge everywhere.
The key to emulating the easygoing nonchalance of bossa nova is lounge. As a verb, as a noun, as an adjective, lounge is key. Lounge everywhere you can – at home, at cafes, at bars. Lounge like it’s your goddamn job because it is now. And if you’re asking, “What does that even mean?” you’re not lounging hard enough.
Embrace the lifestyle.
Even though you can never fully emulate bossa nova’s effortless je ne sais quoi allure, that doesn’t mean you can’t encapsulate the lifestyle it connotes. Panama hats, Hawaiian shirts, cotton shorts – all essential in the bossa nova lifestyle, preferably worn on a beach or open patio somewhere.
So maybe you’ll never be as carefree as a breezy Latin-inspired melody, but that doesn’t mean you can’t curate your vibes to imitate it as closely as possible. Even though by reading this you are putting in too much time and thought into it, hey, even bossa nova musicians have to work to sound effortless, right?