10 Ways to Have a Happier Week
We're all humans, we all wake up in bad moods and endure one of those weeks where nothing goes to plan BUT, that doesn't mean we can't try a few things each day to make sure that we feel a little happier. Here are the following tips that make me feel happier, more organised and stress-free...
1) Plan - I have a diary where I write my plans and daily do-to list down each evening before bed. Throughout the day I highlight what I have achieved (because it looks pretty). Write down achievable things so that you won't be disappointed if you fail to do it. I've also created my own bullet journal because it enables you to personalise your diary and make it 'you'. I write down my goals, any lists like shopping I need and random thoughts etc and I like to decorate it to make it look pretty because that counts as a mindfulness practice as I'm having some me-time and taking a break to focus on my thoughts. Setting goals can be massively motivating and help you get the job done, my weekly goals will often be to write a blog post, do something creative and have a heavy gym session. Also, by getting everything down on paper it helps me prioritise and make sense of things in my head rather than have all my errands floating around causing stress.
2) Journal - I've had journals for as long as I can remember. It started as a way to write my anorexic thoughts down and make lists of healthy habits I wanted to employ and all the advice I found online to motivate me. Then, it became a safe space to write down all the positive things I found and again, everything I was thinking. I literally use it for everything. I write down my future goals, photos and memories, quotes I find, many many lists, magazine clippings etc! I feel so much better and happier when everything is written down on paper and I can reflect back and see how I was feeling and what I have achieved. At the moment I've been writing down each evening how I feel, how my day has gone and any good things or anxious thoughts. This is also a great means to practice gratitude and mindfulness. I've recently been using Fearne Cotton's CALM journal and 5 Minutes in the Morning by Aster which both give you writing prompts to begin and end your day to reflect on your happiness and well-being. It's amazing what peace 5 minutes can bring you, just by being with your own thoughts.
3) 10 minutes + of meditation - it doesn't have to take long, you don't even have to sit on the floor with your legs crossed. I like to listen to use sleep meditation at the moment and meditate in the bath. All you need is to be at peace with your thoughts, which can be anywhere and anytime! There are plenty of apps like Calm and Headspace, YouTube videos (try Andrew Johnson if you like a Scottish accent), websites (my favourites are Brahm Centre and Light Heart) and podcasts, so you can choose out of loads which are best suited to you from as little as 2 minutes to 30 minutes. I also bought Radox bath salts from b&m for £2 which are supposed to cleanse your skin and help you relax which has created a really relaxing and comfortable environment to meditate in. I don't do it every day, but when I do, I feel SO much better and clearer. It really allows you to focus on yourself, be in touch with your body, find out what is making you anxious or stressed and gives you that much needed alone time.
4) Clear up social media - if you use social media frequently then it's a good idea to ensure that it's a safe, healthy and happy space. Social media is an amazing platform when used properly so if you're finding that it makes you feel shitty and brings negativity into your life, then you're using it wrong. I quite often go through my following to ensure that it's all good stuff! I also often use the mute button because it's not always convenient to unfollow someone, especially if it's your friend or family member - but if it's not feeding your energy then don't acknowledge it. You don't have to be on it every minute, it's ok to miss out on stuff - social media fuels our envy and our need to be 'seen' all the time, but you don't actually have to be active or see what people are up to all the time!
Since working more often my phone use has decreased hugely and I actually don't miss it at all. I've mentioned this previously, but I use Instagram most frequently and it was once the most damaging for my health. But since I have seen it as a creative and inspiring platform rather than simply looking at pretty girls and gym inspiration, my mood has massively increased. Frequently reminding yourself that Instagram can be fake and remembering that everyone has an online persona to a certain extent will prevent you from comparing yourself and feeling jealous.
5) Spread kindness - the easiest tip of all! Kindness literally costs you no money, no time and no effort. All it takes is a smile, a compliment, giving helpful advice, supporting someone or making someone feel loved. There should be no rewards for being kind, but it does make you feel happier afterwards knowing you've done something good. Shedding a ray of positive light can encourage others to have a better day so give some of that good energy into the world and watch it radiate around you. My mum left these two books on my bed with a note saying that she thought of me - little things like that make you feel so loved.
6) Nutrition / fitness / sleep - I've combined these 3 because I think they work hand in hand. My body and mind feel 10x better when I've eaten nutritiously, slept well and been active. I try to mainly eat 'good' wholesome food and plenty of it, stay active whether that's a walk, a jog or being in the gym! I listen to my body though and take rest when it needs, eat more when I need it or do more if I have the energy! I am one of those people that needs plenty of sleep, I genuinely can't function properly without it ha, I am so envious of the people that can run on little sleep! I like to dedicate time to fitness - usually it's after dinner at the minute because that's when I finish work. I used to hate the idea of that, but I actually have a lot of energy after dinner and come home and sleep better afterwards. But being on my feet all day at work where I don't always have time for lunch can exhaust me so I don't push my body to workout because I would benefit more from rest! Even a brisk walk around my village instantly improves my mood just listening to music and being on my own. Being in touch with your physical and mental self is so important so, listen to the cues it's giving you and respond accordingly.
7) Nature - like I mentioned above, going for walks sparks positivity. Being outside in the fresh air and greenery makes me feel alive and fresh. When I'm not working, I like to take the time to make a proper breakfast and sit outside in the garden, especially in the little haven mum made at the end of the garden which feels like I'm on holiday. Our garden is so full of colour and divine smells, so I don't have to go far at all to spend a little bit of time in nature. But if you don't, I'm sure there are plenty of parks or fields nearby.
8) Declutter - a tidy space = a tidy mind. I can't leave my room without making my bed and I unpack as soon as I'm home from holiday. I feel so much clearer and happier when my room is bright and tidy. I want my bedroom / house to feel like a happy space where I enjoy being, so I fill it with photos, trinkets and my favourite things. Tidy up as you go and don't leave it until the end, get stressed and just leave it. Maximise your space too! I'm really not a minimal person, there isn't ANY space in my room for anything else, but I believe in only having items that you truly need / or love.
9) Have a creative project - I like to have something to do rather than sit on my phone or watch TV. This blog is my main creative project as I try to write in some form daily, and upload weekly. Writing is most definitely my passion and I find it the only way to relieve stress, creativity and happiness. I'm also hoping to get into embroidery and little DIY projects because I've been saving ideas on Pinterest for years and have never actually completed any - but this is one of my latest goals, so fingers crossed! Reading is also a good habit to employ - I love getting engrossed in a character or a plot and live another life for a few pages. It's a much better way to wind down than being on your phone.
"You fool - you are afraid of being alone with your own mind. You just better learn to know yourself, to make sure decisions before it is too late. Your room is not your prison. You are".