At times, we all feel the pressure of life’s stresses and worries on our shoulders. Sometimes it all gets to be overwhelming, and we struggle to find the joy in our busy existence.
What most people don’t realize is that happiness is everywhere around you, but when you aren’t practicing regular healthy self care, you are blinded to it.
When you get to the point of being utterly physically and emotionally drained and you’re neglecting all of your own needs, it’s impossible to appreciate those small joys that might bring some light into your life otherwise.
Here are 6 simple ways to boost your happiness and keep yourself open to receiving joy.
1. Get some sleep
It might seem like a simple answer, but the large majority of working people out there are suffering from a severe lack of sleep.
Your body goes through multiple cycles or stages of sleep throughout the night, it needs to complete enough of those cycles and reach all of the proper stages in order to re-energize and rebuild itself.
When you miss hours or nights of sleep, that lost time is added to a life long sleep debt that will keep growing so long as you never get caught up on your rest.
You can work on this by listening to your mind and body, sleep when you’re tired, don’t fight your exhaustion when it arises.
Even a quick power nap in the afternoon of between 10 and 30 minutes can jump your batteries and raise your alertness.
Watch out though, sleeping too much more than that during the day can lead to that slow, groggy feeling which is sometimes referred to as “sleep inertia”.
2. Spend some quality time in nature
Not only does a good nature walk give you a chance to enjoy the Earth and all of it’s simple wonders, it can be grounding and provides a peaceful ambiance perfect for self reflection and meditation.
Recent studies even suggest that all of the colors of living plants we find in nature, particularly various green hues, can help to lighten your mood and lessen your anxiety.
Soaking up the sun is also good for vitamin deficiencies that can otherwise affect your mood negatively.
3. Share a good laugh
It may not always be easy to get a hearty, genuine laugh going out of nowhere, but we all have those friends or films, music or shows that we just can’t help but find hilarious.
The physical act of laughing actually stimulates a part of the brain that is linked directly to happiness and your pleasure centers.
A little laughter makes everybody feel better, and it seems to be infectious once you get going.
4. Stand in the sea breeze
Salt water is an intriguing solution. It is currently being researched what the various health benefits of the ocean are for the body, but the mental and emotional benefits are already well known.
Listening to the cyclical patterned noises that the waves make crashing on the shore can have a calming or soothing effect.
The rhythmic audio stimulation can be almost trance-like and at the very least tends to give the sea side visitor an overall feeling of peace and contentedness.
5. Practice deep, mindful breathing
“If I had to limit my advice on healthier living to just one tip, it would be simply to learn how to breathe correctly.”
Sometimes the best answers are the most basic.
Breathing isn’t something we even think about most of the time, simply an involuntary physical action that happens on a constant basis, but if you can take the time and make an effort to pause occasionally and take a few deep breaths, you’d be shocked at how much it can change your mindset.
Practicing purposeful breathing, filling your lungs as full as you can and slowly releasing that air helps to oxygenate your brain and body and clear your mind of panic.
6. Take a shower
Some people prefer hot steamy showers and others like a cool rinse after a hard day, but no matter what your temperature, hydrotherapy is a powerful and wonderful tool for calming and evening out your mood.
Cold showers can refresh you and even assist in lowering blood pressure, whereas a hot shower will alleviate aches, pains and tensions.
Your needs may vary depending on what type of week or day you’ve had, but a comfortable shower, perhaps with some aromatic soap (aroma therapy can be very helpful in mood boosting) will do you wonders.
It’s easy to forget these small things, these little bits of self care, when we are caught up in the chaos of a busy life, but all it takes is a few minutes out of the day and it could be just the infusion of calm and joy you need.
If you can manage to make a habit of a few of these suggestions, you may find that your daily life is wholly changed and you’re smiling more than ever.