Every day, you have the option to make it a good or bad day. Sure, sometimes things will happen outside of your control, but for the most part, your attitude and the way you react to a situation will determine the type of day you are going to have.
It’s amazing that some of the simplest things that can help you feel happier, are also the things that come free!
Laughing is so simple. It’s so easy, it’s actually easier than frowning. Find someone to laugh with every day. Or laugh at yourself, or maybe with yourself. Watch a funny show, read a funny story, tell a funny joke. If you have kids, laughing with them is the best!
You don’t have to be a great singer, but turn on some fun upbeat songs, crank up the volume, and sing it out! I love to put music like that on when I am cleaning, or doing housework, or out in the garden, and especially in the car! If you don’t like how you sound, turn it up loud enough so you can’t hear yourself. Singing in the car is a great way to pass the time and put yourself in a better mood. Tyler loves to sing and is always making up songs, often with made up words, and always ends up laughing in the end!
It’s no secret that I love to read. I read a little bit every day, usually before I go to bed. In fact, I typically fall asleep reading and Justin has to come take my kindle from me. For a while, I stopped reading, and noticed I wasn’t sleeping as well. Once I started to read again, I felt more rested. My brain needs that down-time at night to not think about anything else except the story I am reading. Everyone has their own genre of books they prefer, mine is always modern-fantasy, all started from the day I picked up Harry Potter. I have since read those books more times than I can count. My love for reading has also seemed to extend to the boys, especially Ryan. He loves to grab a few books and read.
Hope. Dream. Aspire. Believe. Desire. Wish. And then, pursue. Every day, take a few minutes to set your intentions for the day. Maybe this is your to-do list for the day, or your one goal to get done. Maybe you are working towards a larger goal, and you remind yourself of what you are working towards and decide what you can do today to put yourself closer to that goal. Think positive, be positive. “A negative mind will never give you a positive life.” -Ziad K. Abdelnour
5. Count Your Blessings
Sometimes it helps just to sit back and realize all the blessings in your life. This can include everything from having a roof over your head, shoes on your feet, food in the pantry, and the love of your family around you. I am blessed to be mommy to my two wonderful, crazy, loving little boys. I have an amazing, supportive husband by my side. We may not have it all together, but together, we have it all. As long as I have these three boys with me, I can conquer anything.
6. Hug Your Family
It may seem trivial, but a good, long hug can put you in a better mood. And the best part, it’s a two-way action, which means it helps the other person too. My boys are great huggers, and are constantly grabbing us, giving us hugs, and saying “oh I love you” and you can’t help but smile.
Your body needs exercise. Your mind needs exercise. Find ways every day to exercise both and you will have a better day. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as “euphoric.” That feeling, known as a “runner’s high,” can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life. (Source)
8. Walk Barefoot Outside
First of all, this gets you outside. I always feel better on the days I get outside than on those I stay indoors all day. Even just half an hour outside, especially in the sun, can raise your mood. Now take it a step further and walk barefoot through the grass. Feel the ground beneath your feet. Connect to the Earth through your body. Is it a rainy day? Go out and play in the rain, jump through puddles, be silly and laugh (point number 1).
9. Give Thanks to Others
Similar to counting your blessings, give thanks to the people in your life. I try to remind the people in my life that I am thankful for them. I am thankful to Justin for being such a great husband and daddy to our boys. I am thankful for my boys and the joy that they bring into our lives. I am thankful for my parents and in-laws for the support and love they show us. I am thankful for my sister and her family, and my brother-in-law for always being there for us. I am thankful for my family for shaping me into the person I am. I am thankful for my friends, and for everyone in our lives that help create a positive life. But it’s not enough to just be thankful, tell them. Tell these people what they mean to you. It will make you feel good to acknowledge it, and you will help make their day better by letting them know they are appreciated.
10. Take Deep Breaths
When raising kids, I often find myself taking deep breaths. Parenting can be overwhelming, so just sit back and take a deep breath. And you don’t have to have children to get overwhelmed. Try to make yourself take a few deep breaths throughout the day. I started yoga this year, and we start and end the hour with deep breaths. It helps to make you more in sync with your body, and helps to ground you when you need it. When taking these deep breaths, try to focus only on your breath and let all other thoughts leave your mind. Just for a minute. Meditate. Take a deep breath.
Most important of all, love. Show love, not hate. We can all use a little more love in our lives, and less hate. Again, negativity doesn’t help make you happier, so try to throw those thoughts out. Show those around you that you love them, don’t forget to tell them now while you can. And most important, love yourself. When you look in the mirror, don’t criticize what you don’t like, but love the body you have. No one is perfect, and you will always find something you don’t like. Instead, focus on what you do like. Like almost every woman, and almost all moms, I wish I had a better stomach area, but I focus on the fact that I love the look of my upper body, my shoulders and arms, which is why I almost always wear sleeveless shirts. Love yourself. Everything about you is a reflection of your life. Love it all.