People often remark that I am “always happy and smiley.” I wish this were so but despite having a naturally cheery disposition, being happy takes work.
There is A LOT in life that we cannot control but one thing that we are always in charge of is how we react to a situation; I CHOOSE to be happy, optimistic, and open minded. Some view my choice as being naive, I view it as finding peace. Now, this doesn’t mean that I am always smiling and happy, most of the time I’m actually feeling frustrated, tired, and even angry, but to surrender to such emotions zaps me of energy and puts me in a funk I simply don’t have time for.
As this week has been particularly draining at work, I thought that perhaps I would share some of my tactics in the hopes of helping others get through yucky days.
- Find something to be happy about.
I know, this can prove difficult but it’s worth the effort. Ever since I was a little girl I have been doing this just to get out of bed. I just search for something to look forward to, it doesn’t have to be big. Sometimes its just counting down to a day off or having new shampoo to use.
- Get your jam on.
The best way to psyche myself up is to crank up some music and then sing and dance like there’s no tomorrow. This always gets me revved up for the day. Often one of the songs will get stuck in my head so that I can mentally sing and dance when I’m out and about, thus fueling me with energy for hours to come.
- Let it go.
One of the quickest ways to stay angry, frustrated, and miserable is by feeling as though you have to fix everything and when I mean everything, I mean EVERYTHING. You can’t right all the injustices of the world and fix all the stupid. This doesn’t mean you can’t care or get involved, but pick and choose your platforms and then monitor yourself. If you feel too tensed up, argumentative, and blood pressure boiling that’s a good hint that you need to take a step back and put things into perspective.
- You are not your brother’s keeper.
This kind of goes with the previous tip. Stop worrying about what your coworkers, friends, and family are doing “wrong” and focus on your own household. I see so much energy being spent in checking into other people’s business thus creating frustration and negative energy. Instead, just try doing your job and taking care of your life. We’re all doing the best we can to survive this crazy world, why not being tolerant and forgiving instead of judgmental.
They really are contagious. I am a natural smiler (see my blog) but it doesn’t mean that I’m always happy (like when I’m super stressed at work) but I know the power of a smile. Even the smallest of smiles can make you feel a little better as well as whoever you are conversing with. It provides hope, a sense of empathy, and interest which generates positive energy which makes the situation a little more tolerable.
Laughing and crying are both a release of emotions so why not laugh. Watch a funny video, tell a puny joke, or enjoy a cheesy show, but relax a bit and laugh, it really will make you feel good. I know I don’t laugh nearly enough, often taking myself too seriously, but when I do relax and get out of my head, I find that life is far more enjoyable with a few chuckles.
- Whistle while you work.
Or, in my case, hum. Snow White’s dwarves really knew what they were talking about here. Humming a little tune really does help one get out of their funk, the work a bit more enjoyable, and adds a spring to your step. Try it.
Being optimistic, content, and happy is more than just a mood or frame of mind, it has affects on your physical health as well, such as lowering blood pressure, reduced anxiety, and better immune systems. If looking on the bright side of things is good for both mind and body, isn’t it worth trying?
It takes a conscious effort and practice but it is possible to literally turn that frown upside down. Don’t believe me, try it yourself. Start right now with a smile or listen to your favorite song, then build from there.
Let me know in the comments if anything here helps you or if you have other tips for a more cheerful disposition.