I’ve never considered myself to be an unhappy or troubled person, but we could all be a little happier, couldn’t we?
About 2 years ago I wasn’t completely happy. I wasn’t completely sad, either, but I decided to challenge myself with the task of becoming happier.
You might recall, if you’ve been reading for years, my Happiness Project. It was similar to that, and absolutely inspired by Gretchen Rubin, but it was also a project that I wanted to have an immediate effect.
Today I’m sharing 5 things I did which made me happier in an instant!
I know that for some people happiness isn’t necessarily a choice, and if your unhappiness stems from more than just general bad vibes then there are tons of professional resources available to you. Here is a good starting point.
These are things which help me to feel happier!
1. Don’t Complain.
This is different to not being assertive – and you absolutely should be assertive (see 2) – but if you often find yourself in an environment where moaning, complaining or general negativity is rife, do not partake. It might be a nice indulgence in the moment, but it won’t do anything to benefit you in the long run. Negativity breeds negativity. Surprisingly, it doesn’t take long for people around you to notice you aren’t being negative, and join you in positivity. Stop complaining, pay it forward.
2. Be Assertive.
Sometimes it feels easier to just get on with something when you feel it’s unfair, but that can hurt your happiness! If you internally question why you’re allowing something, then you should have a conversation about it. For example, if you feel something at work is unfair, or you think a friend has taken advantage, speak up! Be respectful of course, but sometimes its a case of crossed wires. Clearing the air right away stops bad feelings lingering, and will usually result in a better compromise being reached where everyone’s satisfied.
3. Say Yes More.
Until I made a mental note of how much I said “no” to, I had no idea how much I was missing out on. Sometimes it will be simple things and other times it’ll turn out to be a huge opportunity. For example, a few weeks ago Mr K and I said yes to a 5 hour drive to South Wales – it was a ridiculous idea for just 2 nights, but also ended up being a lovely little getaway. Say yes more.
Not only that, saying yes fosters having plans. Having something to look forward to is a massive mood boost when you’re having a down moment.
4. Use Up the things you Love
Ok if you have a work uniform you’ll find this difficult but for me, getting up on a rubbish day and putting on something colourful, listening to a favourite musician and having a coffee can really boost my mood. It might be as simple as wearing your hair in a way that makes you feel good, or having a little spritz of your favourite scent. Give yourself a little treat every day, and when you do, remind yourself why you deserve it.
We all have things we save for “best” but, as Gretchen herself said, if it’s your best why wouldn’t you want to use it every day? Enjoy it!
Similarly for relationships with partners, friends and pets etc – soak up all of that love whenever you get a chance. Send a nice message, remind someone of that time when…
5. Eat & Sleep Well
Until you pay close attention, you have no idea how your diet and sleep can affect your mood. Hangry is a real thing and it’s coming for you! Make an effort to eat breakfast within an hour of waking and then stay fed and hydrated all day with the right foods.
Try to get enough good quality sleep each night too, because sleepiness can bust your mood in a moment!
So there you have it – I paid special attention to these few things and it wasn’t long until I noticed I was happier and more carefree than I’d been in a long time. Sometimes just paying yourself a bit of attention can be really good for you.
Do you have any great tips for boosting your mood?