When it comes to being happy, we are perhaps the universe’s biggest procrastinators. So let’s not waste another moment, and be happy now…
We keep telling ourselves that we’ll be happy when we achieve this or that. When we get married or have a career, when we become parents or move into that dream house, or when we get away from a bad relationship, and so on and so forth… Noble dreams, yes, but to be happy, you just have to make yourself happy now.
The pursuit of happiness – I think a lot of us bypass true happiness for dreams of happiness. Instead of looking at a flower and marveling at is beauty, we set about collecting bouquets – only to find that by the end of it, the fragrance of it all has faded. It’s like Princess Poppy says in the movie Trolls, “happiness is not something you put inside you; happiness is already inside of you”. So here are seven tips to shake that happiness out and spread it all around…
- Try something new: Other than the basic thrill of trying, learning, and acing something new, people with rich life experiences tend to be happier on the whole, according to Psychologist Rich Walker of Winston-Salem State University. So to make yourself happy, try a new hobby. Learn something new and try to be the best at it – be it dance or music, or even martial arts or cooking. Keeping busy and making something out of nothing is a surefire way to happiness.
- Push yourself to exercise: You lose weight, happy. You achieve a goal, happy. Exercise releases happy hormones into your brain, happy. Need any more reasons? Go for an early morning jog, smell the flowers and see the birds, to let that happiness in! Or join up for an evening aerobics class. Or do what I do – put on some calming mantras, and do a bout of Suryanamaskar.
- Smile, even if you don’t feel like it: Darwin insisted that our facial expression enforces our emotional responses, and he was right. If you are feeling gloomy -- try and smile. It may seem forced at first, but making yourself smile may end up unlocking that deep freeze you have put yourself into, and let the sun rays in.
- Sleep for at least 6-8 hours every day: Being well-rested certainly has its physical and mental advantages; one of the biggest is that enough sleep makes you a happy person. And not enough sleep will make you the family grouch!
- Lend a helping hand: Giving something or helping someone will make you feel good about yourself. Kindness, from your end, will make you happy. Helping others and putting a smile on someone else’s face makes you feel needed and good about yourself. It makes you believe that you, too, are worth all the joy coming to you. So yes, to receive joy, spread it around.
- Set goals for yourself: Ambition – to be thinner, to be richer, to travel more or to move into a bigger home – is another way to makes yourself happy. So setting reasonable goals for yourself make you happier, as studies have shown. The keywords are reasonable and doable.
- Count your blessings: In the UK-based Science of Happiness study done of 26,000 people, it was found that those who wrote down and expressed gratitude for all they had in life were significantly happier people than those who didn’t acknowledge their gratitude. We all have unique things in life to be happy about – let’s write them down and celebrate some of them to feel happy, blessed and infinitely more joyful.
Happy giggles to you, and on that note I wish you all a Happy Holi – may the colors around you infuse happiness in your soul. Namaste…