Top 10 Tips to Become a Happier and Calmer Person
Just Breathe – Close your eyes, take a deep breath through your nose, slowly count to 3 and breathe out. You can do that just the once or for as long as you like. I would recommend at least 5 minutes in order to feel better about a situation or your day. In addition to focusing on your breath, try ‘grounding’ yourself by taking stock of your surroundings. Engage your five senses, notice things in the present moment, like the noises, smells or simply how your feet feel on the ground.
Go for a Walk Outside At least Once a Week – Exercise is a great way to boost your mood. It doesn’t mean you should workout at the gym for hours, a simple walk will make you feel so much calmer and happier. Research shows, taking a walk in nature can alleviate depressive symptoms and significantly improve your mood. There is just something about a cosy walk in the sunshine.
Try New Experiences – Forget retail therapy – try adventure therapy. Studies show that spending money on experiences over material things brings greater joy. See your favourite band at a concert, go rock climbing, book a short city break or try yoga for the first time.
Keep a Gratitude Journal – Or any journal, writing down negative thoughts can help you clear your mind and jotting things you appreciate can help you improve your mental-wellbeing. How about you and your loved one or a friend exchange 3 things you are grateful for each morning. It’s easily done via a text message or email and you will have set yourself up for a more positive day, in turn making you happier.
Go to Bed an Hour Earlier – Sleep is one of the most important things you could do to help yourself feel calmer and happier. When we sleep, our body heals itself and the mind has a break from all the stressors in our lives. Research shows that little sleep affects not only our mental but physical health, so try and get at least 8hours of zzz. If you are struggling to fall asleep, write down things that are on your mind, have a hot bath with lavender oil or meditate for 5-10mins.
Cut out Toxic People – To remove all the negativity in your life, sometimes means cutting out certain people out of your life. This doesn’t make you a bad person, this means that you care about your happiness and you do not need people who constantly bring you down or make you cry. Trust me, once you cut out those people out of your life, it will be like a huge weight has been lifted off your shoulders.
Tell People When You Are Feeling Anxious – There is power to sharing your emotions. Talking about your anxieties is key to managing and abating it. If you store all your feelings, you end up feeling like a balloon that has been blown up and you have too much air in you. You just need someone to help you let it out.
Volunteer or Perform a Random Act of Kindness – In addition to helping others, there is a compelling argument that volunteering can really improve mental health by creating a sense of purpose and strengthening social connections. Paying it forward can go a long way too…pay for a stranger’s coffee, take a friend out for lunch or just hold the door open for someone. This will really boost your mood.
Recite Self-Affirmations – Some inner dialogues can be very brutal, but self-affirmations can be your solution. Focusing on your strengths and what you value – can help combat some of the negativity that your brain is raising in your head. Try something like, ‘I am a great friend’, ‘I am kind and supportive’ or ‘I am beautiful because…’.
Give Yourself a Break – Final and maybe most important tip…give yourself a break! So often we put so much pressure on ourselves to ‘do it all’, which can lead to burning out and guilt. You’re your own worst critic. Cut yourself some slack and start accepting yourself for who you are. This is the key to being a happier, calmer you. If you do this, watch your life unfold to being more exuberant and tranquil.
Kammy Karginaite, founder of Honest Healing, positive image activist and mental health advocate, trying to help others heal. Sharing my experiences to raise awareness about mental health issues and chronic illnesses. www.honesthealing.co.uk
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