Whether your mood is overall happy right now or you are in a big rut, there is likely room for more joy and satisfaction in your life. Take a minute now to pause and check in. Below are a few of my go-to checkpoints when I am feeling dull. Try these on today, or add each in one day at a time. You’ll notice a shift in your life instantly.
My Psychology of Personal Development class in college required us to complete a random act of kindness each week and write an essay on how it made us feel. I always felt great after doing mine, and started noticing more random acts of kindness happening back at me.
Buy the coffee for the person behind you in line at Starbucks. Pick up the garbage in your neighbor’s yard without him knowing. Make your housemates’ beds while they are away. Give someone ten minutes of your time to help them out expecting nothing in return.
Try to keep it random and anonymous (don’t get caught!). You lose the karma if you seek credit for your deed.
Do you have a vacation planned, even if its eight months from now? Studies show we get more satisfaction from anticipating our vacation than actually going on it. Either way, it makes us happy, so get one on your calendar STAT. Are you saying you can’t afford it? Then start a vacation fund. Assess your budget and how you spend your money on what’s important to you, then build in savings for your vacation one week at a time.
Remember, your vacation doesn’t need to be across the globe and cost a full month’s salary. A long weekend getaway to investigate a new town and take some time for yourself is all you need.
Look around your home. How does it make you feel? Do you feel warmth, security, and pride? Or do you feel anxiety, detachment, and blah? Are your possessions exploding from every shelf, nook, and cranny? Or is there actual space for new and better opportunities to come into your life?
Our homes are meant to nurture and revive us. If yours does not, it’s time for a change. Consider you are holding on to too many things you don’t need. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up changed the whole feel of my house, and as a result, my life too. Or a few alterations of Feng Shui can go a long way. I reference my Feng Shui for Dummies book often!
First and foremost, are you drinking enough water? Are you hydrated? How much living food (like fruits, vegetables, and raw nuts) are you ingesting? The more alive the food is you put in your body, the livelier you will feel. Consider doing a 1 to 3 day all raw food fast. For me, one day of eating clean sets the trend for a full week of conscious, healthy eating.
Why do you get up each morning and do what you do? Go deep on your answer (journaling on it will help). For example, my why for working is not so I can bring home a paycheck every two weeks. Instead my why is focused on the people and experiences in my life. I go to work every day so I can support my family without having to worry how we will pay the bills. I want to be able to travel and visit family and friends whenever I want to, in order to create life experiences that are important to me. I also love bringing people together, and my job allows me to do that.
Knowing your why will keep you motivated and inspired. It will help you find meaning amidst the daily tasks you both love and hate. It creates a bigger purpose behind the actions you take and puts a spring in your step when your alarm clock goes off in the morning.
Right now, what are three things you are grateful for? Say them out loud. Write them down. Tell someone (especially if they are what you are grateful for!). Do this daily, morning or night. The more grateful you are, the more you will attract things into your life that you can be grateful for.
Neale Donald Walsch says, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” That’s where the good stuff happens, people. On the other side of your comfort zone is where deep friendships are made, career growth erupts, heart-pumping adrenaline kicks in, and favorite memories are made. The more we do small things that scare us a little bit, the more confidence we build to do bigger scarier things that can cause a great shift in the amount of joy we experience in our lives.
Talk to a stranger, try sushi, buy a travel book on Indonesia, attempt hand stand in the middle of the room, message your high school crush on Facebook. It’s OK to be scared. Today is the day.
There is beauty, healing, and rejuvenation in nature. It gives us an opportunity to align with the energy of the Earth that surrounds us. Let your bare feet touch the grass. Stand in the rain. Feel the radiant warmth of the sun or the vibrant chill of the winter on your skin. Hear the birds. Smell the freshly cut grass. Notice the blue of the sky. Breathe it all in.
How do you check in to make sure you are living each day as full as you can? Share in the comments below!