Some days might begin as a day from hell, but they don't have to stay that way.
Last blog, I introduced the first four tips and tricks to turning even the worst days around. You can read tip's 1-4 here. We started creating our ‘Crappy Morning Kit’ and now we are well on our way to taking total control over our days. Today, let's continue with number 5 - one of my favourites!
Love is everywhere, and love is incredible. You have a family - you're BURSTING with love! Your friends, your family, your animals, and your significant other surround you with love everyday - you just need to be aware of it.
Sometimes we get complacent and take our loved ones for granted. We see some of these people every day, and it's easy to switch off to the loving things that they do or say. It's especially easy to switch off when your teenagers attitude is through the roof.
So, it's time to start noticing and appreciating!
To do: Start making some lists. Start with the three people (or animals) that mean the most to you, and write down all the reasons why you love and appreciate them. Find them, call them, and tell them how grateful you are to have them in your life. Better yet, let your family members know how much they mean to you every single morning. Never let them leave the house without knowing they're loved.
You've always loved these people, but start paying attention as to WHY you love them so much, and your connection with that person will grow.
“If you can grow in love, you will grow in awareness. If you can grow in awareness, you will grow in love”
There is so much magic in a smile. Not only does it make you feel wonderful on the inside, it positively affects those around you, too. Think about how you feel when someone looks at you and smiles. You feel aallll the warm fuzzies!
Scientists say, every time you let out a big, cheesy grin, it's like a party in your brain! Smiling encourages the release of neuropeptides that help fight off stress, and the release of neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and endorphins.
To do: SMILE! This one is easy. Smile while you shower, when you drive to school, when you lock eyes with a stranger, while you talk on the phone, and all the times in between. Smile even when you don't want to smile. You'll instantly feel different!
Some of my favourite YouTube videos to watch are those that present acts of kindness, like this one . They make me feel wonderful, and I'm only watching the act unfold behind a computer screen! Imagine if I was the one carrying out the act of kindness.
Scientists at Emory University say, when we are kind to another person, our pleasure and reward centres in our brains light up! We feel absolute joy as if we were the receiver of the kind act, because we know that we’re helping someone else feel good.
What’s better - the good feeling doesn't stop at just you or the receiver. Giving acts like a domino effect! Someone who has just experienced (or even witnessed) an act of kindness is in an elevated state of happiness and gratitude, making them more likely to then help someone else, according to a 2007 study by Harvard University. This is called the Giving Chain and it keeps generosity alive!
To do: Give! Give a smile, give a compliment, give a helping hand to the mum at drop off struggling to juggle all her kids and their bulky dioramas, donate old books to the P&C, give 10 minutes of time before school to listen to kids read, give a high-five, give a hug.
I'll be the first to admit that going to the gym isn't first on my list of fun things to do... But I go anyway, and I'm always so glad I did!
Scientists say exercising improves happiness by:
Helping you to switch off from the stress and anxiety you may be feeling and just focus on the tasks at hand.
Encouraging endorphin production. Endorphins give you that euphoric feeling after you do certain types of exercise.
Releasing dopamine, which is associated with feelings of pleasure and happiness.
Boosting confidence. You're making your body stronger, fitter and healthier, which has got to have some positive physical effects that'll make you feel great about yourself!
Energizing you. A quick workout has the ability to make you feel on top of the world for the rest of the day, and kicks you out of that sluggish mood!
Fighting insomnia. A study showed that 150mins of moderate-vigorous activity a week provided a 65% increase in sleep quality amongst insomnia sufferers!
Making you feel good about yourself. Sometimes getting the motivation to exercise is hard, but once you get out there, ditch the excuses and JUST DO IT, it makes you feel so proud of yourself!
To do: fit some exercise in your day! Walk the dog, play at the park with the kids, kick a ball with them outside, do a YouTube Yoga video, take the stairs, cycle to school, hit the gym on the way home, walk around the block during lunch break. In Part 1 of this series, I spoke about cranking music every morning while you got ready for school/work. Where there is music, there should be dancing, so - DANCE!
Find what works best for you and using tools from this post and the last, create your own “Crappy Morning Kit”. Encourage input from the kids - what do they like doing?
Whip those tools out, and crush negativity in its tracks! YOU are in control of your life – not outside influences. And guess what? Today, you choose to be happy – no matter what.
Love & Happiness
P.S Do you know someone who could really benefit from reading this? To give them the motivation and push they need to make a difference in their own lives and the lives of the young people around them? Share this post with them. Even if they don't embrace it straight away, you've done your part. Thank you.
The next step:
Commit to being the change, and get started on my IHH 10 Days of Gratitude Challenge. Sign up now to receive your FREE copy. I made it especially for you :) (and not once did I let Adobe InDesign beat me! Ok, maybe once…)
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