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Need A Mood Booster? Here’re 5 Ways To Get Happier Within 1 Minute

Need A Mood Booster? Here’re 5 Ways To Get Happier Within 1 Minute

Let’s face it – everyone hits rough spots. (Unless you are Mary Poppins, she never seemed to get upset…) You might be sailing along, happy and content and then bam! Something out of left field gets you upset. Maybe you stub your toe. Maybe you get bad news. Maybe you spill your coffee on your favorite pants. Little or big, there are times when you need a quick way to get back to happy, pronto.

Over the years, I’ve tried lots of things to help me take life’s setbacks less seriously. I’ve asked my friends what they do to cure the doldrums and many times their suggestions simply take too long, too much planning or too much money. I can’t jet off to Tahiti because my performance review didn’t go well. I can’t take the day off to have a spa day and soak in mud with cucumbers on my eyes when my feelings have been hurt. I have responsibilities, time constraints and sometimes I just want to be happy NOW! I am, after all, part of the instant-gratification generation!

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Here are 5 of my go-to techniques to get happier in a minute or less!

1. Close your eyes and take a few slow, deep breathes.

Deep breathing is a great way to lower your blood pressure, calm your mind and release endorphins. When my niece was about 2, she would get really wound up and I started having her do deep breathing with me. I made a game of it: we would face each other and I’d say, “Take a deep breath in…” and she’d watch me and breath in with all her might. “Now out slowly…” and we’d breathe out together. We’d repeat that three times, facing each other and end with a little bow. It was amazing how much calmer she became! It is still a go-to technique to calm her down – and now her brothers too! I do it myself when I find my mind racing or when something trivial gets me worked up!

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2. Doodle yourself happy.

If I’m in a public place, at a professional gathering or some other place where I need to be discreet, I grab a pen and doodle. Doodling can do one of two things: it can help me tune out information that is stressing me out or it can actually help me retain information. According to Sunni Brown, author of the book, The Doodle Revolution, doodling can affect how we process information and solve problems. It can actually help us retain more information than if we just listen. (I wish Sunni Brown had been around to explain that to my teachers – I’ve been a life-long doodler!)

3. Sing out loud!

Karen Carpenter was onto something when she told us to Sing out loud, sing out strong! Singing boosts circulation, increases your oxygen intake which is good for your body and your brain, decreases anxiety and releases endorphins. If you aren’t the best singer and you don’t happen to be alone when you break out into song, you may end up laughing about the situation as you spread your joy – however out of key – with others.

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4. Laugh it off!

I grew up watching the Brady Bunch every day after school. One episode that stood out was when the girls were having a sleepover and they decided to play “Ha”. They laid on the floor, each girl’s head on another girl’s stomach. They started off saying “ha” and then ended up laughing for real. I tried it with friends one time, we thought we could do it without really laughing, but discovered it was just so silly we started truly giggling. Laughter has many health benefits. Laughing relaxes your muscles and relieves stress, improves mood and lowers stress hormones. So now when I’m feeling stressed, I often turn to quick and funny videos on YouTube to get me laughing – it changes my focus, makes me happy and has all the health benefits I just mentioned!

5. Jump!

Have you ever seen someone who is so angry that they start pounding their feet or even jumping up and down to make their point? Have you then noticed that their mood begins to shift? Jumping up and down, as if having a mini hissy-fit, is actually one of my favorite ways to get my happy back. I find jumping to be a go-to stress reliever when technology is not my friend. When my software crashes or my DVR forgets to record a favorite show, you may find me jumping up and down in an effort to release my frustration.

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It turns out jumping is pretty amazing! It gets your blood flowing and your lymphatic system on the move. Jumping stimulates metabolism and releases serotonin – a stress relieving hormone that stabilizes your nervous system. It increases bone density and oxygen intake which helps you focus. Jump long enough and you get a cardio workout. Best of all – jumping up and down because things aren’t going your way doesn’t just make you look like a 2 year old, it makes you feel better!

These are just a few quick and easy mood boosters – some you can do discretely in a group and others that are louder and more active. So the next time life is getting you down, choose to take action to bring you back to a happier place. You don’t need a lot of money or vacation time, a minute or less will usually do the trick!

Featured photo credit: Fabien via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

7 Powerful Questions To Find Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

7 Powerful Questions To Find Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

What do I want to do with my life? It’s a question all of us think about at one point or another.

For some, the answer comes easily. For others, it takes a lifetime to figure out.

It’s easy to just go through the motions and continue to do what’s comfortable and familiar. But for those of you who seek fulfillment, who want to do more, these questions will help you paint a clearer picture of what you want to do with your life.

1. What are the things I’m most passionate about?

The first step to living a more fulfilling life is to think about the things that you’re passionate about.

What do you love? What fulfills you? What “work” do you do that doesn’t feel like work? Maybe you enjoy writing, maybe you love working with animals or maybe you have a knack for photography.

The point is, figure out what you love doing, then do more of it.

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2. What are my greatest accomplishments in life so far?

Think about your past experiences and the things in your life you’re most proud of.

How did those accomplishments make you feel? Pretty darn good, right? So why not try and emulate those experiences and feelings?

If you ran a marathon once and loved the feeling you had afterwards, start training for another one. If your child grew up to be a star athlete or musician because of your teachings, then be a coach or mentor for other kids.

Continue to do the things that have been most fulfilling for you.

3. If my life had absolutely no limits, what would I choose to have and what would I choose to do?

Here’s a cool exercise: Think about what you would do if you had no limits.

If you had all the money and time in the world, where would you go? What would you do? Who would you spend time with?

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These answers can help you figure out what you want to do with your life. It doesn’t mean you need millions of dollars to be happy though.

What it does mean is answering these questions will help you set goals to reach certain milestones and create a path toward happiness and fulfillment. Which leads to our next question …

4. What are my goals in life?

Goals are a necessary component to set you up for a happy future. So answer these questions:

Once you figure out the answers to each of these, you’ll have a much better idea of what you should do with your life.

5. Whom do I admire most in the world?

Following the path of successful people can set you up for success.

Think about the people you respect and admire most. What are their best qualities? Why do you respect them? What can you learn from them?

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You’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.[1] So don’t waste your time with people who hold you back from achieving your dreams.

Spend more time with happy, successful, optimistic people and you’ll become one of them.

6. What do I not like to do?

An important part of figuring out what you want to do with your life is honestly assessing what you don’t want to do.

What are the things you despise? What bugs you the most about your current job?

Maybe you hate meetings even though you sit through 6 hours of them every day. If that’s the case, find a job where you can work more independently.

The point is, if you want something to change in your life, you need to take action. Which leads to our final question …

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7. How hard am I willing to work to get what I want?

Great accomplishments never come easy. If you want to do great things with your life, you’re going to have to make a great effort. That will probably mean putting in more hours the average person, getting outside your comfort zone and learning as much as you can to achieve as much as you can.

But here’s the cool part: it’s often the journey that is the most fulfilling part. It’s during these seemingly small, insignificant moments that you’ll often find that “aha” moments that helps you answer the question,

“What do I want to do with my life?”

So take the first step toward improving your life. You won’t regret it.

Featured photo credit: Andrew Ly via unsplash.com

Reference

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