We’ve all read the articles describing how to find a happier and peaceful you. And we’ve all more than likely taken an internet test to discover whether we’re some light and carefree animal like a bird, or an angry animal like those screaming goats. They usual all say the same type of thing – To be happy look inside yourself and find your best you. (Huh?? Like seriously, what does that even mean???)This list is different, I swear! Here are 10 actual specific tips you can use to incorporate a little more happiness into your world. ..
1. CLEAN: Yep, clean. For many women, I know cleaning is one of those chores we wish had been left behind in the 20th Century. Seriously, though, cleaning (as unattractive as it may seem) can indeed bring happiness. There’s a saying – “Cleanliness is next to Godliness”. Whether or not you believe in God, having a clean atmosphere can bring about a sense of peace. When your living space is cluttered, there is a strong chance your mind is as well. Bringing about order to your personal environment can bring about order to your mind and spirit, and can be very therapeutic. Plus cleaning doesn’t have to be a complete drag. Make it fun! Have some stress you need to burn off? Turn up the radio and rock out with your vacuum! Have an issue you know you need to sit down and sort out? Turn off your phone, the tv, and any distractions, and think about it as you wash the dishes. Clean out and organize your closets as you watch a marathon of your favorite tv show. Sing and sweep. Gab on the phone with a good girlfriend as you dust… I know for many it may seem farfetched, but cleaning is a good thing. Plus, being dirty isn’t cute! So roll up those sleeves, ladies, and get to cleaning!
2. INDULGE IN A HOBBY: No matter what type of lifestyle you lead, everyone needs a hobby. Everyone needs something that they enjoy that is purely recreational. You may enjoy reading. You may enjoy cooking. You may enjoy working out. WHATEVER it is, make time for it at least once a week. But I don’t have the time, some of you may be saying. Well, honey, find the time. I know in today’s world of overextending ourselves and constantly being on the go, it may be hard to find the time to just stop and relax, but it’s necessary! Find a night, an hour, a few minutes to just take time for you and indulge in that hobby. But I don’t think I really have any hobbies, some of you may be thinking. Well then explore and find one. Try something new every week until you land on a new hobby. Which brings me to my next point….
3. LEARN SOMETHING NEW: Life is way too short to be complacent. If there is anything you have ever wanted to try – DO IT!! Take a chance and learn something new. Learn a new language, or take a cooking class. Learn to play chess or to knit or to dance. Make it fun! Involve your friends and family. Learning something new can be a fun group thing with friends or a bonding experience for your family. Whatever it may be and whether you do it with a group or alone, learning something new can be enriching and bring new satisfaction into your life. I’m learning French.
4. DATE YOURSELF: Yep, I mean exactly what it sounds like I mean. Take yourself out on full-fledged dates; just you, yourself, and…you. This works for all women. Straight, lesbian, single, married – it doesn’t matter. I know it may seem a little weird and corny, but hear me out. I was down in the dumps about being alone and lonely when a good friend of mine, Crystal, suggested I date myself. It sounded odd to me, but I trust her so I tried it. Boy was it amazing!! I took myself to the park, to the theatre, and to nice dinners. Any date I had ever wished someone else would be wise and fun enough to take me on, I did it myself, and three major things happened. First, I realized I could do things on my own. I could eat alone; I could go to movies alone. All those taboo things we never want to do by ourselves, are NOT THAT BAD alone. Actually, they’re kinda fun! Secondly, I learned new things about myself. The same way you go on a date and learn all these new things about the person you’re dating; it works the same when you date yourself. I found all these new interests within myself that I didn’t even know I possessed, and I learned about preferences I didn’t even realized I had. Dating yourself may seem corny, but boy can it be an eye opener. Lastly, it made me happy. Date Days with me were fun and ended up being something I looked forward to. So go ahead and get dolled up for YOU! If you’re single, go for it! If you’re married, go for it! There’s nothing like good quality me-time!
5. BE AWARE OF WHAT’S HAPPENING IN THE WORLD: There is so much happening on a daily basis in our local communities, in our country, and in the world. There are wars happening overseas, natural disasters hitting parts of the world, and hate and injustice happening right here in our own backyards. I know a lot of it may be scary, but be knowledgeable. Do not be one of those women content with living in a bubble oblivious to what’s happening around her. Watch the news! Maybe not every day, but often. Knowledge is power, and in a world where things can change for the better or for the worse in the matter of seconds, it’s good and necessary to be aware of what’s happening in the world around you.
6. SELF-HONESTY: This one may be a little hard, but get honest about you. Notice I did not say “with yourself”. Being honest with ourselves tends to lead us to exploring more emotional aspects about ourselves. Honestly, I don’t like… If I’m honest with myself, it’s true I feel… Get it? However, when we’re honest ABOUT ourselves, we explore our character. Honestly, I procrastinate… Honestly, I tend to tell lies a lot… Honestly, I can probably be a bit nicer to those around me… Being honest about yourself will require you to take a real nonbiased look at yourself and admit things that you will not like. When you’re honest and aware of your flaws, though, you can begin to change them. About two years ago, I realized I was a horribly negative person. I softened my negativity with a lot of jokes and sarcasm, but pessimist – I WAS! Once I got honest about myself, though, I was able to begin changing. It’s been a tough journey, but I’m definitely more positive now than I was, and I’m SO happy I was honest about myself so I could make a change. It’ll be hard, but you’ll be happy you got honest!
7. STOP COMPLAINING: If you are one of those women who is constantly complaining about any and everything, you’ll never be happy. Think about it! It’s simple logic. If you’re always complaining, then you’re never satisfied. If you’re not satisfied, then you’re not happy. So cut it out right now! I know it will be hard, but seriously, just try to stop. Complaining about things you have no control over will do nothing but set yourself up for a negative personal aura. And complaining about things you do have control over is pointless as well. Stop complaining about them and simply fix them. FACT: The words you speak can and will shape the person you become. If negativity is constantly coming out of your mouth, then “Negative Nancy” you will be.
8. REEVALUATE RELATIONSHIPS: This is another tough one, but it’s necessary. Everyone you call friend, may not be so. Not to say that they are bad people; I’m sure that they are great people. However, a true friend is a very special ally in life and the title “friend” should not be given away so freely. You may have more than a few people you enjoy hanging out with and enjoy talking with and generally have awesome times with, but learn to decipher between true friendship and those you simply have great times with. A true friend will be there with you for those awesome times, but also for the not so awesome times. A true friend will be honest with you about things you may not want to hear. A true friend will defend you but will also tell you when you’re wrong. Simply put, a true friend will take you for your good, your bad, and your ugly! Being able to recognize a real friend is a definite step to overall happiness.
9. DON’T COMPARE YOUR LIFE TO OTHERS: As we get older, our Facebook timelines become endless presentations of wedding announcements, new born baby pictures, and exotic travel statuses. When you’re looking at all these statuses of lovestruck newlyweds and vacations in Bali and Costa Maya, don’t you feel that teensy bit of jealously turning over in your stomach? Yea, you do? WELL CUT IT OUT!!! One sure fire way of ensuring you remain unhappy is to spend your time comparing your life to someone else’s. So what you’re 30 and unmarried and everyone around you is engaged or already hitched! And so what that guy you interned with in college now has his own business and you’re just glad you’ve been at the same job for over a year! Their life is just that – theirs! So stop obsessing over your former fat friend’s new fit body. If you want one, work out and get one. Your life is yours and yours alone. Know that no matter what your situation, you are right where you are supposed to be in life. What is meant for you is meant for you, and there is not a single person or thing out there that can change that.
10. FIND A SPIRITUAL BALANCE: I am a Christian. I believe that God sent his son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross, defeat death, and rise again on the third day so that I may be saved from sin. I’ve held this belief my entire life and dedicate my life and lifestyle to that of Christianity. Now I understand that there are numerous denominations within the Christian faith and also numerous other religions out there, but all I’m saying is – Believe In Something and Dedicate Your Life To IT. Whether you’re Christian, Buddhist, or one of those people who simply believe that there is something greater than us all out there in the universe, take your belief and incorporate it into you daily lifestyle. Finding a spiritual balance brings peace and harmony to the mind and spirit. Believing in God has given me the strength to endure heartbreaking and tumultuous times in my life. Believing in God has given my life meaning and direction. Believing in God’s unconditional love for me, has brought me out of many a dark place where I would have otherwise met my demise. Finding a spiritual balance can do all this and more for you. This is my most important and the most relevant tip I have for you.
So there you have it! Ten not-so-typical tips that you can use to find a happier you. Some are easy, some are hard. Try a few or try them all. Whatever you do, choose to be happy…. Hmm, I guess that’s a tip I left off the list. So tip #11 – Happiness is first and foremost a choice. Choose to be happy!
Cheers to a Happier You!