Boost Your Happiness During a Pandemic
During these challenging times, the idea of cultivating personal happiness might seem trivial but it might just be more important now than ever before.
“All of this negative energy taxes the mind, body and spirit,” says Carla Marie Manly, a clinical psychologist and author of Joy from Fear: Create The Life Of Your Dreams By Making Fear Your Friend.
“As such, it’s vital to intentionally counteract this toxic, fearful energy with a conscientious investment in creating happiness.”
But how does one actually boost happiness during a global pandemic? It’s certainly not as simple or tactile as washing one’s hands — but there are actions we can take to manifest joy.
Double down on physical self-care — especially exercise. Gretchen Rubin, author of numerous books, including “The Happiness Project,” says that the first step in boosting happiness is to take care of your body. “Your physical experience will always influence your emotional experience,” she says. “And exercise is the magical elixir of life.” Even light yoga or taking a quick walk can do the trick, A 12-minute walk is sufficient to create an upbeat, happy mood.
Meditate. You will foster inner joy by slowing to meditate for even five minutes at a time, Meditation increases feel-good neurochemicals, as it reduces stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol.
Improve sleep. A good night’s sleep is hard to come by when you’re self-quarantined in a global pandemic, but rest is crucial to both physical and mental wellness.
Connect with other people. Even if we are alone in quarantine, we mustn’t deprive ourselves of social interaction. We’re fortunate that we have so much technology we can use to connect with people who aren’t nearby. You can teach loved ones who may not know how to use these technologies so they are not left out or isolated.
Declutter your space. Many people feel more inner calm and happy when their outer surroundings are more clutter-free. Decluttering can be difficult now, with more people home and a heavier load on your household, but whatever you can do can help give you a sense of control over your life. Even making your bed may actually make you feel better.
Experience nature — even if that’s just looking at a photo. We may have to work a bit harder to access nature right now, but if you can put that extra effort in, you’ll be happy you did. Exposure to natural environments has been linked with better general health and less stress. Looking at photographs of natural environments can have similar effects on those unable to get outside.
Say thank you. Rather than noticing what you don’t have, pause to give gratitude for what you do have. Immerse yourself in gratitude not only by writing down a list of things you are grateful for, but by thanking everyone who crosses your path, including yourself. Whether you thank the delivery person for the load of boxed groceries, your partner for bringing you a cup of tea or yourself for finishing a work project, your happiness level will increase when gratitude flows.
If you need someone to talk to as an Intuitive Life Coach I offer a free Comfort Call and promise it will be uplifting and calming.