Get happy: Idea #4

Get happier… be nice!

This is our long-time friend Nyoman. He lives on the island of Bali, and is one of the kindest people I have ever met.
His laughter kills me.
When he laughs – I start too – we end up in hysterics. And it’s funnier because my Balinese is terrible and his English is only so-so, so we keep setting each other off.
It’s fun.

I asked him why he is always so happy.
His answer? He doesn’t do things that make his heart worry.
He doesn’t lie (even white ones), cheat, push (even metaphorically), hurt (words or actions) or treat anyone other than how he would like to be treated.

In plain English – that means – he’s nice. 

He’s also not a push-over.
He is nice to himself as well as the rest of the world.
He set’s kind boundaries, says ‘no’ in a lovely manner, problems solves with grace, and meets challenges with optimism.

What to do?

Easy…Be nice.
Do nice things, think benevolent thoughts, say kind words.
Don’t make your heart worry. 

Colour Me Happy

Get happier… Idea #3

Want to get happier? Reduce your stress and get into ‘flow’.

When I was a kid, we had DoodleArt. Great big posters that I spent as much time colouring as playing Kick-the-Can. (Dating myself big-time.)

It’s why we LOVE colouring books. Coloring is a stress-free activity that relaxes the amygdala — the fear center of the brain — and allows your mind to get the rest it needs. (And this one has a great title! And yes – we carry it :-))

When coloring, we activate different areas of our two cerebral hemispheres, says psychologist Gloria Martínez Ayala. “The action involves both logic, by which we color forms, and creativity, when mixing and matching colors. This incorporates the areas of the cerebral cortex involved in vision and fine motor skills [coordination necessary to make small, precise movements]. The relaxation that it provides lowers the activity of the amygdala, a basic part of our brain involved in controlling emotion that is affected by stress.”

In simplest terms, coloring has a de-stressing effect because when we focus on a particular activity, we focus on it and not on our worries. Sound familiar? Yup – it’s an amazing form of meditation. Colouring regularly has similar benefits as a meditation practice.

When we take school supplies to aid our the foundations we support, we take crayons and pencil crayons; not felt pens. Why? Because the plastic case becomes waste as soon as the felt pen has dried. When colouring – think about which tool you will use. Call me overly-enviro … I don’t mind 🙂

Live in joy,

Our favourite colouring books… yup, you can get ’em at The Oracle.

Favourite Colouring Books
Happy Colouring

Happy Buddha

Get happier: Idea #2

The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts. ― Marcus Aurelius

It’s all in your mind.

You already know that ‘thoughts are things’ and that what you think about is what you create in your life. Want to be happier? Think happy thoughts.

But it’s not that easy, because research shows that it takes 5 happy thoughts to counteract 1 negative thought.

Not only that, but negative thoughts have more staying power – they stick longer and offer something to dwell on; while happy, positive thoughts flit through. Delightful one moment – and ‘poof’ gone in the next.

Positive thinking won’t work for you if:

  • You like the negative. There is a certain drama and attention that often goes hand in hand with ‘problems’.
  • You can’t find the ‘good’ in a situation. And maybe there isn’t one. But you still have the rest of your life to be happier.

Positive thinking will work for you if:

  • You WANT to be happier.
  • You are aware of your thoughts, and can find the good in a situation or be able to move past conditions.

Notice your thoughts. When you find yourself thinking negative, actively search for FIVE positive things to counterbalance the gooey negative.

Put ’em in the bank.
Don’t wait for a negative though to push it’s way in. At random times throughout your day, mentally list out 5 positives; or as many as you can come up with. Your general outlook will dramatically improve.

With our thoughts, we make the world. ― Buddha

Live in joy,

elephant kiss

Get happier. Idea #1

In this photo, I have just experienced an elephant kiss. It is the equivalent to a soggy vacuum cleaner.

I nearly piddled I laughed so hard.

As daylight decreases, starting in the fall, people tend to have more feelings of depression, anxiety; often which feels like stress.

As we head into another fall, I’d like to share my beliefs in ‘living in joy’ and being happy.
Two things to note:
  • Happiness is a choice.
  • Happiness is impermanent. It arises and subsides. You can choose to return to ‘happy’, when you are ready.
Being happy is waaaaay more fun that being miserable.
Way more fun.
In fact it’s what makes life worth living. Being happy, sharing happy times with others. Hugely fulfilling this happiness thing.
One of the things that jazzes me is learning new things, or gathering courage and stepping out of my comfort zone to try something new.
Be brave, try something new, it doesn’t have to be an elephant smooch, but something that could cause a good giggle, open your mind to a different perspective, or experience learning.
Let me know how it goes!
Live in joy,
Don’t live the same year 75 times and call it a life. ~ Robin Sharma