It’s true that the older I get the easier it is to stay in a happy frame of mind. A study of 500,000 women and men in 72 countries found that happiness dips when women are about 40 and comes roaring back as they approach 50 (and beyond). Scientists haven’t yet explained the bliss boomerang, but anyone familiar with what it’s like to shop groceries, make dinner, field calls, kids demands, pay bills and barely keep up with housework might have a theory!
As a motivational speaker on healthy lifestyles, I’m starting to appreciate the little, effortless happy moments that circle around us all day long. We only need to slow down, take a breath and find the happy.
Here are a few of my strategies:
- First thing in the morning, I choose my afternoon reward: a walk, a lunch or coffee date, calling a friend, a yoga class. Anticipating it keeps me upbeat all morning!
- For a boost I’ll look for something beautiful to concentrate on in that moment: the color of the sun through the leaves, my cats deep belly-up surrender into a nap, my sparkling clean white tile floors!
- Moving my body (some call it exercise). Those endorphins never disappoint.
- The healthy functions of my body
- Creating a really beautiful plate of food.
- Eating it, really tasting it, without rushing.
- Planning a dinner party: This doesn’t happen very often but when it does I stay happy from the inception of the idea through the last drop of wine and chocolate!
- Sinking into clean sheets at the end of the day with a great book.
- Surprising someone you know with a little nicety (SendOutCards come to mind)
- Throwing an unexpected complement someone’s way.
So next time you’re feeling blue, balance it out by finding the smallest things that make you happy.
Excuse me while I go for an after dinner stroll around my friendly, familiar neighborhood.