Here are my personal tips to instantly feel happier on a day that, well… just isn’t going your way.
This June I was invited to speak in the picturesque town of Salisbury, by a lovely, entrepreneurial young lady called Louella, (she’s the superstar gorgeous, glittery gal in the main image by the way) who had got in touch with me because she had attended one of my talks at our partner retreat with YogaFit, the year prior – did I instantly feel happier? Yup!
It’s always wonderful to hear how someone has progressed because of working with me or attending a talk, and in this particular case, even more exciting that the event I had been invited to speak at by Louella, was in fact, the outcome of her progression and attendance of my talk.
Each year at YogaFit I run my Six-Step Life Cleanse programme which helps you to press pause on your life and hit reset. One other way that you can instantly feel happier too. The first session is about figuring out what you really want from life and creating a big exciting vision. For Louella, she left with the confidence to set up her own motivational talks, called Mental Mondays.
It was a really special night with over 30 attendees, and in this article I want to share with you the same points I shared with her keen and welcoming audience, that balmy summer evening.
If you have been to one of my talks before, you’ll know that I’m committed to finding happiness in the now and helping others to do the same, but I know that it’s not always easy, especially on the difficult days. Just because I’m The Happiness Explorer and a trained life coach, it does not mean that I do not have difficult days – I have to use these tips to help myself feel instantly happier too. That’s life! What changes however is how you respond to those difficult days and when life throws me a curve ball, I have a few practices I always turn to.
Here are 7 practices I personally use to instantly feel happier on a difficult day. All of these tips are practical and easy, plus they all create that extra awareness you need in the moment, to remind yourself to be happy in the now. I list them from the easiest to the hardest – not that they are hard at all, they just take a little more getting used to.
If you’re reading this, then you’re already doing this, thank goodness! However how are you breathing? On difficult days our breath can become short and shallow which is exactly what happens when we feel anxious or worried. Taking just three long breaths in for the count of 5 and out for the count of five, whilst releasing a sigh on the out breath, will calm you down and help you to become present.
2: Get outside
Yes this is obvious, but how often do you actually do it when life gets difficult? We can all easily embody Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music when the sun is shining and you feel like a character out of Glee, but the days you need this the most are the difficult ones. When life gets tough we need the support of nature to reground us and remind us that everything will be ok. So you need to get your ‘hippy’ on and make friends with a tree (or just go for a walk) and allow nature to reenergise you.
3: Move your body
The days we feel sorry for ourselves are the days we are least likely to say “I can’t wait to get to yoga” or “I’m getting up a 6am to go to Spin”, more often than not, we’d rather cocoon ourselves on the sofa and binge watch Love Island. I’m not judging, those days are needed too, but what I don’t want you to forget is that you don’t need to rely on the mind to feel happy, the body can do this for you. You can use your physical state to affect your emotional state. It takes at least 15 minutes of cardio to begin releasing happy hormones, however I find even a 5 minute stretch can help me along.
You don’t have to be an expert at meditation to reap it’s rewards, just ten minutes (even if your mind wanders), will be an an additional support when you’re feeling low. My way is to not over complicate it. Just sit down, close your eyes and be still. Don’t try to not think, it’s pretty much impossible unless you make like a monk and live on a mountain for years. Instead, just try and stay in the room, if your mind takes you out of the room to where you’re going out for dinner that night or to an argument you had with your partner and hour ago, just acknowledge those thoughts and come back to the present. Focus on the sound of your breath and you’l be well on your way.
I use gratefulness every single day, I even have “I am grateful” written on my living room wall to remind me to be grateful. Why? Because it instantly brings you into the present so that you can be happy in the now, instead of worrying about the past or the future. To get started with this, I recommend 30 days of gratefulness which involves writing down three things you can be grateful for every morning as soon as you wake up. They can be as small or as big as you like, from having a roof over your head, to the fat promotion you just got.
When life feels like it’s pushing back at you from all directions, it’s time to surrender. This is just a deeper way of saying, let go. Don’t try and paddle up stream when life is calling you to go with the flow. Be more like water and take the path of least resistance. It doesn’t mean that you are giving up, it means that you are open to seeing another way of doing things and it also allows for an intervention, or miracle to occur. When we push too hard, we stop life from surprising us. This may look like stepping away from a project, not worrying about money or just trying to not do so much.
The most important for last, love. This should be the easiest but it isn’t. I am talking about giving love, receiving love, being love, loving love, sharing love and opening to love. Think “Love is all around us” by Wet, Wet, Wet. When life is a shit storm, ask yourself “Where is the love?” It starts with you. Are you giving yourself any? Probably not. We are always the first to beat ourselves up when life gets tough, when what we really need is to be our best friend. Secondly, think about someone you really, really love and who really, really loves you for who you are, without condition. Close your eyes and bring this person to life in your mind’s eye, then place the image of their face on your heart and just be grateful for them. The love you have for them and they have for you, will give you strength and remind you that life is not all that bad.
DO SOMETHING TO OVERCOME YOUR PROCRASTINATION TODAY, THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE FOREVER.
- Are you a 30-40 something woman?
- Are you a successful professional?
- Are you smart and hard working?
If you answered yes to the above, keep reading…
- You’re confident and happy on the outside – life is good – but inwardly, you feel lost, stuck and directionless?
- You want to be doing something that is more fulfilling, more exciting and…well…more, YOU?
- You’re going around in circles trying to figure it out, which drives you crazy, because ordinarily you’re an action taker?
- You’re sensing that you were MEANT to see this post today?
Then you were, because I wrote it FOR you and I’m here to HELP.
- I have eight years of experience in the self-growth and development industry.
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- I have spent over 2500 hours helping smart and ambitious women just like you, accelerate change in their lives.
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- I want to move forward
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