Do one thing off this list each day, and see if you feel happier after 3 weeks. Or try to keep as many up as you can and check in at the end to see if it makes a difference to your happiness level.
#1 Drink A Glass Of Wine In The Afternoon
Obviously make sure you don’t have to get to a big meeting or work after, or drive to pick up the kids, but why not enjoy a leisure glass of wine on a Sunday afternoon with lunch. A treat my husband and I are sure to enjoy now and again. It relaxes, is full of antioxidants and proven to lower blood pressure too.
#2 Start Off By Stretching
Wake up and start on the floor and stretch out your whole body before taking on the day. Start with arms over your head body stretch, and make your way to your limbs stretching each in turn, and don’t forget your neck. Breathe deeply as you go and try to relax into your stretches. You will know when to stop your stretch, your body naturally lets you know, 15-20 seconds in. It feels good, and also gets you ready for an active day.
#3 No Meat For One Day
Our family has decided to reduce our meat intake. After reading an article about how our bodies process red meat and how it turns acidic during long digestion. Not only are we cutting out red meat completely or only infrequently for special occasions but also switching to fish and chicken only. Friday’s we eat fish and will be increasing to two days.
Mondays we have allotted as our vegetarian day, a digestive cleanse.
Start with one day a week, where you cut out meat completely, and see how you feel. If you are not ready to even think about a day without meat, try a meal without it. You will be surprised at the positive effect it has on your system.
#4 Start Your Day 1 Hour Earlier
I love waking up before anyone else in the house. My morning coffee with my computer, catch up on grocery lists, and get all my prep done before anyone even knows I am awake. It could make for a more organized you!
#5 Compliment A Stranger
I try to do this each and everyday, but if this is outside your comfort zone, try it one day. It has to be genuine. What I have found is that I get more out of it than the person I compliment.
#6 Go Out Of Your Way For Someone
Do you know someone that might need you? No time? Make the time for them. Maybe you know a person that works with a charity, or someone without a car or an elderly person that could use help carrying their groceries, try to make time. You will be happy you did. A favour that takes you a few minutes, can mean the world to someone in need.
#7 Finish Off Your Day By Stretching
Finish off your day with some gentle stretches can help you sleep better. While you stretch your muscles you can think about any nagging tasks from your day, plan tomorrow and deal before bed. A fabulous way to tie up loose ends mentally, and finish your day right.
#8 Focus One Day On Your Posture
No slouching! My mom would bug me when I was a child, and now I wished I listened. This one is a tough one for me. In the car it is the easiest, tightening your stomach muscles, and elongating your spine, pulling the top of your head as far as you can, and tilting your chin in. Put your shoulders back and when you breathe make sure they are deep breathes all the way down to your lower diaphragm. If you keep this up, you will find you have more energy for the day when more oxygen finds your muscles.
#9 No Chores For One Day
One day each week do absolutely nothing around the house. No cooking, eat leftovers, no laundry, no floors, or even shopping. Take the day to enjoy the outdoors, the company of family and friends, or sit and watch a good film. Whatever you choose, take the day for yourself. We work so hard in our lives, and stress is everywhere we turn. You deserve a day off.
#10 Play With Your Kids
You know when the kids come to you and you are in the middle of cooking or cleaning a toilette and they ask, can you play Wii or chess or draw with me, and you push they aside and continue the pressing job. Well the news is just in! It isn’t a pressing task at all, and one day you will realize this and it will be too late. They won’t be asking anymore. Take a moment to just sit with them. They don’t need fancy toys or Play Land or Disneyland, they want you!
If you don’t have kids, go play anyway! Get the basketball and shoot some hoops, go swimming, take your dog for a walk. Just playing in general makes people happy.
#11 Wear Bright Colors
Look around at your friends in a group and 90% of them are wearing black or grey. Why not be the bell of the ball and wear a fabulous slash of color. It could make you happier to feel bright on a dreary winter day, and believe it, people notice. Step outside your color palette and spread some joy with a scarf or tights, or be very brave and wear a loud jacket, and smile confidently while you do it!
#12 Visit Or Call An Old Friend
That special friend that you couldn’t live without when you were kids, or someone that moved away and you lost touch, ever wonder what happened to them? Why not take a minute on Face Book to find them or give them a call? I have reconnected with some pretty amazing people from my past, and although occasionally it doesn’t pan out when they are not on the same page, usually people are just as curious about you. Be brave, be bold, and maybe reconnecting will give you peace or happiness and if you are lucky, putting yourself out there, you will find an old friend. You will never know unless you try.
#13 Try To Make Something New For Dinner
Experiment in the kitchen by putting something new in front on your family. For us it is hit or miss but an adventure every time. Maybe make Indian cuisine and put traditional Indian music on or make a theme and watch Bollywood after. Try Italian food and serve wine or grape juice for the kids. Being creative can be fun, and your family will be better for it, trying things from around the world.
#14 Buy A New Book
Go to your nearest book store and ask what is new. Browse around and take sometime to find the perfect book. And enjoy it. Escaping to another time, learn about a far away land, or an imaginary place. It can be an adventure to happiness.
#15 Slightly Change Your Look
Ever want to cut your hair, or get bangs, change your hair color or get some streaks. Especially in the winter, it feels great to change it up slightly. If you are not that brave, try a bold lipstick or blue eye shadow, something you wouldn’t normally do. For men buy a different style shirt or shoes, just a little bolder than the ones you keep buying over and again. Stepping outside your comfort zone will make you feel alive.
#16 Invite Someone New Into Your Home For Coffee
Is there a new face at school? Why not help them feel welcome and invite them to your house for coffee and get to know them. Maybe make a play-date for the kids with the intension for the parents to stay. It is always nice to reach out to people. You will be happy you did. If they are not a good fit, I am sure you can connect them to someone that is.
#17 Try A New Hobby
Think you might be good at painting? Why not buy a canvass and give it a go. Or you always dreamed of picking your own warm tomatoes from your garden, why not look up gardening online and see if you can try a new hobby. Most people stop themselves from new things, thinking they won’t be good at it. How will you know it you don’t try?
#18 Surprise Someone With Flowers
It is your mom’s birthday? Try sending her flowers! It will brighten her day and make a nice surprise. Or maybe someone lost a loved one at work? Pool your money with coworkers and show that you care and get a condolence card and some fresh cut flowers to them. A little sentiment can go along way, and making them feel special, will brighten their day.
#19 Smile At Everyone You Meet
It might feel strange at first, especially if it is not in your nature. A smile is an open door for positivity to come to you. A smile at someone that says pardon me can defuse anger. ‘No problem’, and smile. I find smiling is contagious, and the more you smile, the more happy people are around you and it is a vicious cycle. It works if you are always miserable too, so why not use your powers for good!
#20 Have A Bubble Bath
A great way to take sometime for yourself, try a warm relaxing bubble bath, to soak your cares away. A sure way to finding happiness!
#21 Buy A Bouquet Of Flowers
Why not during your grocery shop add in a little bouquet of flowers. I hear friends complaining, how he used to buy me flowers. Buy them yourself ladies. It will brighten the mood in the house, a slash of color on a winter’s day, and he might appreciate it too. And even get the hint! When I was single I bought myself flowers every payday!
It is our job to find happiness; no one can make you happy. The power is in us and if you are waiting for your partner to do it, you could be waiting a long time!
I know that some will only do a few things on our happiness list; others will try them all, and maybe continue with a few each day until things start to brighten up.
Attitude determines your altitude in life, so stay positive and keep searching for what makes you happy.