Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Good Housekeeping: A to Z Guide to Feeling Happier Part 1

A: APPRECIATE the present.  When stressed think about something that's good about your circumstances right now (it's called "SAVORING").  Shift your focus on something positive instead of negative.  B: BAKE  Research shows it's emotionally therapeutic.  C:  CHANGE your commute.  If you can walk or bike instead. If that is not possible, listen to an audiobook to give your brain a mental get away.  D: DANCE  Researchers found that depressed individuals who took Salsa lessons improved their moods.  Individuals who learned to Tango, had less depression and insomnia and greater life satisfaction.  E: EXPERIENCE  Experiences, especially those shared with others, make you feel more connected.  F: FLIP through photos.  People who focus on good things in their past are happier. Look at vacation snaps and baby pics.  G: GRIN  This stimulates smile muscles and sends nerve signals to your brain that you are happy.  H: HIKE  Spending time outside makes you feel less tired and more alive.  Studies show 20 minutes of outdoor exercise is all it takes.  I:  INHALE  Breathe in through your nose for four counts, hold your breath for one and exhale through your mouth for five to lower heart rate and blood pressure.  Try for 3 mindful breaths an hour.  J: JOURNAL  Research shows writing down what you feel grateful for at the end of the day makes you feel optimistic.  It can be a physical journal or even texting yourself a reminder of what you're thankful for and why.  K: KISS  Kissing stirs up positive feelings.  L: LET the light in.  If the sun is shining, go out.  One study showed, people who increased their exposure to bright light argued less and felt happier. M: MAKE your bed.  Gives you a sense of order.  N: NOSH on fruits and veggies.  Research shows a link between improved mental well-being and eating 5 or more portions daily.

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