Even though the sun is shining, and we can see a light at the end of the tunnel, are you struggling to get your happy on? That is normal. We’ve spent many months with our guard up, on high alert and in a constant state of hyperarousal. It will take a little bit of effort to tear down some of the walls that have been built to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe. While many people have been vaccinated, and we are making strides, the crisis is not yet completely over, and no one can say for certain what comes next. However, though it may not feel like it, we HAVE A CHOICE in how we manage our feelings and how we spend some of our time. What are you doing to own your happiness? Have you tried everything? Here are some suggestions that just might help you own your happiness.
Quiet The Noise
1. Name that feeling! Acknowledge the negative emotion(s) you are having.
2. Brain Dump! Get ALL your worries and concerns down on paper. Then throw it away.
3. Detox your news diet! Get the current facts, but limit how much time you are spending reading and focusing on the pandemic. Set a time limit and get on with your day.
4. Catch yourself speaking negatively! How we speak is important! Our brains are listening, and our moods will match what we are saying.
Get Your Happy On
1. GRATITUDE! Spending daily time focused on what you are grateful for changes your brain, reduces stress, and breeds a positive attitude.
2. BREATHE! Flood your body with oxygen and help quiet your mind. Breathe in to a count of 4, pause for 4, breathe out for 6 and pause for 4. Practice for 5 minutes daily. Use whenever you are beginning to feel anxious.
3. MUSIC! Start with music that matches your current mood and slowly change it to music that matches the mood you are wanting. It works!
4. DANCE LIKE IT'S YOUR LAST CHANCE! Dancing brings joy. It's a brain chemical thing. Try it!
5. MOVE YOUR BODY! You can control how much and what kind of exercise you do. Make it fun. Make it easy to do every day. Explore online resources. Get outside. Need ideas? Call me!
6. EAT GOOD FOOD! While the habit is to reach for the quick high that comes from empty calories, eating delicious, healthy food will fuel your body and brain in a way that sustains energy, supports a calm and controlled mood, and will make you happier with yourself in the long run.
7. REACH OUT TO OTHERS! Whether by phone, zoom, letter, or shouting across a yard - we are still practicing physical distancing to protect our health, but staying social will keep you happy.
8. HAVE FUN! With whomever, doing whatever, in any way possible. Make it a daily habit.