First, I have a confession to make:
I’m a reformed news junkie: The New York Times, CNN, the local newspaper and anything else I could squeeze into the cracks of my all-too-busy life.
The news made me feel knowledgeable, easy to converse with, fairly interesting and a bit of an intellectual snob.
The other thing it made me was sad. Very sad.
All day long I’d flash back on something I’d read or watched, and I’d feel my body spiral downward to the dark place where problems reside. I would feel powerless, scared and alone.
One day I made the choice to get happy.
Yup, you got it!
Puppy videos, the paraplegic veteran crossing the finish line, the guy paying the coffee tab for the twelve cars behind him, the homeless person befriended; all things that communicated aliveness, hope, love and gratitude.
No, I didn’t give up the news altogether, but now I’m now on a restricted diet of all things depressing, I mean newsworthy. I know what I need to know to stay on top of the issues, and I do. But not a thing more.
Change your focus, change your mind.
Change your mind, change your mood.
In the past six months, I’ve discovered that I’m more pleasant to be around after I’ve watched a child celebrate her final chemo treatment, than I was watching a group of politicians be disrespectful, insulting and condescending to one another.
I’m more encouraging, uplifting and impact-ful when I watch an eleven year old belt her sweet lungs out in song, than I was when I was on top of what company had laid off how many people.
I’ve discovered that when I watch someone do something nice for someone else, it makes me feel more engaged in life; it opens my heart, puts a smile on my face, and makes me feel an expanded spirit of generosity. And appreciation.
Best of all it makes me happy and since happiness is contagious, it makes those around me happy too! (Psst…. anger, fear, and a lot of other emotions are contagious too!)
In an instant I can change my mood from ‘dark’ to ‘light’, from ‘no’ to ‘yes’, from ‘sad’ to ‘glad’. You can too!
Here are a few of my go-to sites for quick inspiration and a hit of happiness. Check them out. Smile. You, too, have your go-to happy-in-an-instant things; photos of your family, your favorite vacation spot, something on your bucket list.
Please share them in the comments below. We really want to know what makes a positive difference in your life!