Happiness and Living

Seven tips for making yourself happier IN THE NEXT HOUR

What Day is Today, does it Matter? : Seven tips for making yourself happier in the next hour.

You really can make yourself happier ~ and this doesn’t have to be a long-term goal or ambition.  You can (should, MUST) start right now.  In the next hour, check off as many of the following items as possible.  Each of these accomplishments will lift your emotions, your positive mood, as will the mere fact that you’ve tackled and achieved some concrete goals.
1. Boost your energy: stand up and pace while you talk on the phone or, even better; take a brisk ten-minute walk outside in the fresh air.  Research shows that when people move, their metabolism increases, and the activity and the sunlight are good for your focus, your mood, and the retention of information.  Plus, because of “emotional contagion,” if you act energetically, you will help the people around you feel energetic, too.

2. Reach out to friends: make a lunch date or send an email to a friend you haven’t seen in a while.  Having warm, close bonds with other people is one of the keys to happiness, so take the time to stay in touch.  Somewhat surprisingly, it turns out that socialising boosts the positive emotional moods not only of extroverts, but also of introverts.

3. Rid yourself of a nagging task: answer a difficult email, purchase something you need, or call to make that dentist’s appointment.  Crossing an irksome chore off your to-do list will give you a big rush of energy and cheer you up, and you’ll be surprised that you have been just procrastinating for too long.

4. Create a calmer environment: clear some physical and mental space around your desk, work area or even at home, by sorting papers, pitching junk, stowing supplies, sending out quick responses, filing, even just making your piles neater or creating your own space at home, your own physical comfort zone.  A large stack of little tasks can feel overwhelming, but often just a few minutes of work or effort can make a sizeable dent.  Try to get in to the habit of using the “one minute rule” ~ i.e., never postpone any task that can be completed in less than one minute.  An uncluttered environment and mind will contribute to a more serene emotional mood.

5. Lay the groundwork for some future fun: order a book you’ve been wanting to read (not something you think you should read) or plan a weekend excursion to a museum, hiking trail, sporting event, gardening store, movie theatre ~ whatever sounds like fun. Studies show that having fun on a regular basis is a pillar of happiness, and anticipation is a very important aspect of that pleasure.  Try to involve friends or family, as well; people enjoy almost all activities more when they’re with other people than when they’re alone.

6. Do a good deed: make an email introduction of two people who could help each other, or set up a blind date (or not hahaha), or send someone a piece of useful information or gratifying praise.  Do good, feel good ~ it really does work.  Also, although we often believe that we act because of the way we feel, in fact, we often feel because of the way we act.  When you act in a friendly way, you’ll strengthen your feelings of friendliness for and towards other people.

7. Act happy: put a smile on your face right now, and keep smiling.  Research shows that even an artificially induced smile has a positive influence on your emotions ~ it turns out that just going through the motion of appearing happy can brighten your mood and lift your emotions.  Why?  Because to have thought, you have a sense of the happiness you want and need to feel and having a ‘happiness focus’ brings happiness in itself.  And if you’re smiling, other people will perceive you as being friendlier and more approachable.

Some people worry that wanting to be happier is a selfish goal.  On the contrary, studies show that happier people are more sociable, likeable, healthy, and productive ~ and they’re more inclined to help other people.  So in working to boost your own happiness, you’re benefiting others as well.

Feel happier yet?

Emotional Happiness ~ Recognise and Name Your Happy Emotions

Although many happy emotions arise spontaneously, part of the experience is the realisation that we feel them.  When you are joyful, you are aware that you are joyful in and at that moment.  Since consciousness of joy is part of the experience, it stands to reason that the more we tune in to the joy in our lives, the more of it we may feel.  Did you know that we can attract things into our lives just by focusing on them?

Although we have plenty of words to describe happy emotions, our brains (adult or child) tend to spend more time thinking about problems and negative states than positive ones.  We need to find the problem and fix it.  How often have you heard that admitting the problem is half the solution?  We human beings are creatures of habit.  Once we think in certain ways over and over again, our brains develop special pathways that make it easier to think that way again.  When we spend a lot of time looking for problems, the brain pathways that look for emotional happiness gets rusty and it becomes harder to navigate.

When I heard, as a child, that our brain cells were constantly dying if we didn’t think about something for a long time, I resolved to protect myself by periodically thinking about something I didn’t usually pay much attention to.  To this day, the thought of slimy frogs still comes to mind once in a while ~ just to keep the slimy frog neural net alive. Here are five motivational tips for using these words to increase your emotional happiness:

  1. Pick one word and spend a whole day looking for that emotion in yourself and others. Notice who has it, who doesn’t or where you see more or less of it that day.
  1. Spend some time brainstorming more happy words and add to the list. I have found that most people feel happier just by reading the list of happy words.
  1. Pick your top ten positive emotional words. Again, the time you spend thinking about and evaluating happy words will tend to focus your attention on the happiness around you.
  1. Write one or two of the words on a piece of paper, or make a poster. Post it somewhere you see frequently like the bathroom mirror, your computer monitor, or the dashboard of your car.  This is also called goal or mind mapping especially if you plot on the poster routes towards goals or happiness events/results.
  1. Write each word on a card and pull one at random when you need a little boost. Then spend a moment thinking about whether that emotion applies to you now or could apply to you now.

120 Words for Emotional Happiness ~ Can you think of more?

Exhilarated Celebrate Accomplished Pleased
Expectation Cheerful Adoring Pleasure
Exultant Climax Advantageous Polite
Fascinated Compassionate Affectionate Positive
Fair Competent Agreeable Proud
Faithful Content Amazing Rapt
Fantastic Contentment Amorous Relish
Favor Delight Amused Satisfied
Favorable Eager Amusement Serene
Fervent Ebullient Animated Skilled
Festive Ecstasy Anticipation Spell bound
Fine Elated Appreciative Spiffy
Forgiving Energised Ardent Sunny
Fulfilled Engaged Astonishing Sunshine
Fun Engrossed Attracted Superb
Glad Enjoyment Awestruck Talented
Gorgeous Enthralled Beautiful Tender
Grateful Enthusiastic Beneficial Thankful
Gratified Euphoric Blissful Thrilled
Great Exalted Breathtaking Tickled
Groovy Excellent Brilliant Triumphant
Gusto Excited Captivated Virtuous
Merry Helpful Joyful Well-mannered
Mesmerised High Joyous Whole-Hearted
Nice Hopeful Jubilant Wonderful
Noble In high spirits Keen Worthy
Happy Interested Kind Peak
Occupied Involved Lovely Zealous
Optimistic Jolly Loving Zest
Orgasm Jovial Magnificent Joy

Think of these words often, notice how often they describe how you feel at that moment, and watch your spirits soar.

Now, make a habit of thinking of more positive and happy words/phrases through frequent self-examination during the day and night and write them down

Workshops ~ Brain Chemistry

The brain, as with every other part of our bodies has certain functions but it can be trained or educated or changed when things aren’t going right or going well for us.  For instance, when we say “we can get into a rut” it means we are habitually following certain pathways and of these pathways lead to negative effects the term ‘rut’ can be quite apt and descriptive.  So, we have to get out of the ‘rut’ and to make our own path in life and to do this, we need to change our habits and the way in which we think and act and react to life.  To do this, we have to change the way our brain acts and/or reacts.  To enable this change, we have to consider the brain chemistry and composition.

To change our brain chemistry in this regard, involves looking at belief patterns which prevent people from being happy.  These include:

  • encouragement in and of positive thinking
  • sharing good news, maintaining contact with friends and good relatives
  • smiling into the mirror for two minutes at a time; okay, this sounds a little off the wall but you will be surprised at how some people are positively affected by this
  • doing up to 30 minutes of physical exercise to produce a naturally high feeling by releasing endorphins in the system
  • regular prescriptive meditation; we say prescriptive because it is very important to use meditation as a serious aide to wellbeing, mindfulness and happiness
  • drawing up future life plans, ranging from a month to five years

Our workshops investigate and examine all the above and more.  Results from very many studies have shown brain scans that are altered dramatically when happiness returns to a person.

“The experience of the workshop was enjoyable because I found I was being motivated again. My self-esteem was raised, I gained a more positive outlook on life and I think I have become a better person.  Now I can recognise lots of good sides of myself. In many ways it was a revelation”.  And what she has taken from the programme can be adapted into most people’s lives.  “I am just enjoying life, befriending people and having fun with my family and grandchildren,” she says.  ”Life gets shorter as you get older, so you have to make the most of it while you can.”

If you would like to learn more or attend happiness and positive emotions workshops contact Lambda Mi today.

If you want these workshops in your workplace for the benefit of your staff (because happy staff are better staff) then get in  touch with Lambda Mi today.

Michael Boase

EQ Consultant

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