Monday, March 07, 2011

Eight Ways to Get Happy

You know I think the Partridge Family might have been on to something when they sang the song, "Come On Get Happy." Sounds like a relatively simple thing but sometimes it becomes a monumental task to pull ourselves out of a dark rut of unhappiness. Now I do not necessarily equate unhappiness with sadness. I think a person can be unhappy and can turn it around with just a few minor changes in attitude, where as sadness sometimes runs fairly deep and might just need a wee bit more attention than a mind shift.

I was reading a couple of different articles on happiness and really liked a point made on the pluginid site he stated that 50 percent of our happiness is related directly to our genetics. which he notes that means that 50 percent of our happiness comes from what we can control.

I've pulled some ideas from several different places into what I think are some great ways to lift your spirits.
1. Mingle With Amazing People
Surround yourself with positive people, making a positive impact on the world around you. It doesn't have to be a major mover and shaker or someone traveling the world, it can be someone in your small circle of influence. Someone that makes a difference in the life of the child around the corner can be as uplifting as someone who works to better the life of a child half-way around the world.

Wasting our time with people who just want to bring us down, is simply that, a WASTE. We need to surround ourselves with people who want us to succeed and believe in us. The quality of our life is directly related to the quality of friends and family around us.

You are a product of your environment.

2. Accept What Is
We tend to waste so much time worrying and wondering, what if, what about this? WHAT IF we just moved on? We need to stop concentrating on past mistakes, past choices, and the past in general and focus on the now and plan for the future. One of my favorite quotes is, "Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending." - Carl Bard. We need to learn to embrace our imperfections and learn from them instead of just living in the punishment phase forever.

Never borrow trouble.

3. Befriend Failure
We all know someone (a boss, a co-worker, team mate, teacher, mentor, etc) that isn't exactly our best friend but we keep them around because they do teach us things. Failure is like that, although not the most pleasant person in the room, it is often the wisest. Instead of concentrating on our short comings we should use those as a spring board for growth.

Make the laughter outweigh the tears. 

4. Do Something You Love
We all have activities that we enjoy, something that just brings us pleasure. There is that one, that single little activity that just makes us smile or relax, we need to find that. Often times we let friends or family dictate what we should or should not enjoy doing. So if the activity is legal, we all need a little selfish time to indulge in the simple pleasures of life.

Be yourself.

5. Choose To Be Happy
Although we are surrounded by things that we cannot control, we have made many choices and decisions that bring us to the point we are right now. So we need to learn to accept that we've messed up and our present state might be a direct result of either taking or not taking certain actions. One of the most stifling things is to be paralyzed with the fear of making ANY decision. We need to learn that indecision is, in fact, a decision - a decision to not make any kind of move and usually because we fear the outcome. It's like walking through the house in the dark, we may finally arrive across the room but it may be with a bruised shin or stubbed toe. We should boldly choose to walk forward, inching ahead in the dark and eventually emerging on the other side.

Learn to find pleasure in the simple things.

6. Sleep
We all need plenty of rest. I know for me, I can always tell when I need more sleep, when something doesn't go right, I feel defeated. Most times a little sleep and I awake with a new zeal for life and a bring-it-on attitude, ready to face the problem head on.

A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor's book.  ~Irish Proverb

7. Sing Out Loud
There is nothing like just finding some tunes you like and belting them out like you are the newest cast member of Glee. I have a small folder of songs that I refer to as my "attitude songs" when I feel down or even if I just want to smile, I crank those up and sing to my heart's content. However, I must admit, I have to be somewhat selective when I do this because dog's for miles cover their heads and howl at the sound of my voice.

Sing like no one is listening, Dance like no one is watching, Love like you've never been hurt.

8. Sit in the Sunshine
You know if you'll watch a dog or a cat you'll see they often times find a little spot in the sun to curl up and take a little nap. They know the secret to being content, find a sunny spot, let the sunshine cover you and just breathe. Contentment is buried beneath those beams.

In the words of the late, great, John Denver, "Sunshine, on my shoulders makes me happy......"


Mackenzie Garst said...

Love this post! Good work Aunt Lori. :) Happiness is a choice.

Anne Armstrong said...

A very good read!! Thanks Lori!