Small daily tweaks to make big happiness gains

happiness

Happiness is influenced by our actions.

We can choose to live in a way that makes us feel happy, or not.

But, the reality is, we get too caught up everyday day life, to sit back and cultivate our happiness.

For example, travelling makes me happy but, can I do that every day? Not right now. So, does that mean I am subjected to a life of depression? Of course not.

Luckily, for you and I, there are some simple tweaks – that can significantly boost our daily happiness.

1. Write a “control pad”

Write a paragraph, in your note pad, on how you honestly feel about your present place in life – cover work, love and family alongside anything else important to you. Below that write three things that are within your control to change in the next 6 months.

2. Take a warm bath with your favourite scent 

“You time” is crucial to your happiness and overall wellbeing. Even if it’s just 20 minutes, take it and protect it with your life. Your mental health relies on it.

3. Wake up ten minutes earlier and drink your tea or coffee slower than usual

Try to do this facing a window, preferably with daylight and take in your morning without rushing or flooding it with nervous energy.

4. Cook your favourite dish for lunch or dinner

Cooking food can be very therapeutic. If you don’t enjoy cooking, as much as others, maybe involve your friend, partner or children to make it more fun. However you decide to cook, the end result of eating delicious food will certainly boost your happiness.

5. Drink one more cup of water than you usually do

Instead of reaching for a coffee to help you break through the afternoon slump, drink a glass of water, you’ll be shocked at how energised you will feel after.

6. Write down your favourite quote and frame it 

Recognise words that motivate and inspire you. Use these words as your mantra. Reading your favourite quote, each day, will help you to stay on track with your personal goals and also remind you why you are pursuing them.

7. Learn one new thing a day

This doesn’t have to be huge. It can be something as small as an animal fact (if you want to learn more about animals!). Try to point your daily learning towards a large concept that interests you, this way all your learning will have a purpose.

8. Accomplish one small goal a day that’s dedicated to personal development

This can be anything from reading more personal development literature, exercising more or start meditating. Whatever your personal development goal, make sure you start chipping away at it, each and every day.

9. Spend at least 20 minutes walking outside, per day 

Nature is mother natures remedy for stress. Just simply looking at trees can make you feel more at ease and peaceful. So make sure you spend at least 20 minutes per day, in green nature to feel the benefits.

10. Give something back 

This can go from complimenting a colleague to taking on a young mentor. Either way, make sure that you acknowledge the fact, that the world isn’t all about you and give something back.

11. Look at old photos and reflect on how much you’ve grown and changed over the years

It’s always nice to see how far you’ve come. Really study yourself and learn about how you have grown. Remember what it was like to be you all of those years ago. Were your worries ever necessary? What have you learnt?

12. Give yourself five reasons why you’re glad to be alive

This allows you to stay grateful and humble. Two things integral to our happiness.

13. Sit in a dark room and do absolutely nothing for 15 minutes

During this time try to focus on your breathing and take yourself to your happy place. It’s worrying how much our digital distractions destroy our inner peace.

14. Create a bucket list of all the things you want to do before you turn a certain age

This will challenge you to seek new experiences, dream boldly, and stop holding yourself back. Hold yourself accountable to this list.

15. Reach out to a few people you admire

Tell them how your life has changed for the better because of them. This helps you to understand the value of others and the importance of a strong network. It also helps you to solidify existing relationships.

 

How to stop negative thoughts taking over your day

negative

We all have days where negative issues or thoughts start to overtake our minds. So much so, that we can’t focus on our priorities. When something’s bothering us, getting it off our mind is easier said than done. In fact, research shows that when people tell themselves to not think about a certain topic, it makes the thoughts even more intrusive. But rehashing negative thoughts over and over in your head is unpleasant and adds no value whatsoever— it can even pave the way to chronic depression.

Luckily there are some proven strategies that help you to expel negative thoughts from your brain ASAP;

1.Take a step back

Sometimes we have worked ourselves up to such a degree that we start to think in absolute extremes. For example, “I’m definitely going to lose my job” or, “Shes definitely cheating on me”. Where is the evidence? How did we get to this extreme point? When we get to this extreme place we’ve lost all rational and the only thing we must do is take a step back. The thing we absolutely must not do is take any action when we are in this, “extreme thought” space. Take deep breaths and bring yourself down to your rational thinking point, this is the only way you can begin to focus on other things.

2. Don’t read into things too deeply

When we have negative theories or anxieties it causes us to read into every little detail, far too much, with little accuracy. They say that The Idle Mind is a Devil’s Workshop. So, if you don’t get replies from someone, or shorter answers than preferred, your brain starts over-thinking why, especially, if you have a negative theory – by doing this you exacerbate your negative thoughts. Just stop. Stop drawing assumptions without evidence, it doesn’t benefit your mental health. Just be as rational in your thinking as possible and when you start to jump to assumptions you can assume your emotional thoughts are driving you.

3. Maximize positive thinking and minimize negative thinking

Regardless of your thoughts at any one time, always ensure you have more positive thoughts in your head than negative. If you can’t reframe a certain thought, think of everything else you have in your life. Be grateful. Always try to keep your attitude in the positive zone. This mindset becomes a way of life – the glass can be half full or half empty, it’s your choice. A quote I like to remember if I feel in a bit of a slump and want to regain control is “It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves”. – William Shakespeare

4. Reframe negative thoughts

Nothing is ever black and white. If you’re stuck on a negative thought, that involves a person, thinking with empathy instead of anger gives you a totally different perspective. Don’t be so set in your negative theories, people often don’t deliberately go out of their way to hurt others. Another way to reframe is to see the silver lining. How can this negative incident make you a better person? How can you grow from this? They say there is no success without failure, for a reason.

5. Don’t let negative thoughts become beliefs

Self-awareness is key. If you didn’t perform properly at work and you start to believe your own self-criticisms you will eventually believe you are incompetent. Positive people, instead believe they will do better next time. These tiny tweaks in your thinking, preserve your self-confidence and performance ability over time. Don’t be self-defeating. Monitor your negative thoughts and make sure you are not crushing your own confidence.

 

 

 

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