This weekend I took part in my second ever colour run. Anyone who’s taken part in one of these runs will know how much fun it is – seriously, if every run started and ended with a rainbow of colours thrown in the air then I’d run a hell of a lot more!!
Taking part in the run got me thinking about the things that make me happy and how I try to pick myself up when I’m feeling down. Now, I don’t know about you but I’m constantly striving for a happier and healthier life. That’s not to say I’m unhappy with my current state of affairs but I struggle with anxiety and often get myself into a cycle of negative thinking.
As difficult as I find it at times, I do believe that it’s important that we stay present in life; focusing on the here and know, enjoying every moment of it. So what can we do right here, right now to ensure we’re leading the happiest & healthiest lives possible?
I’ve listed my top 10 ways to start leading a happier, healthier life now.
Find a creative outlet
We don’t always get the opportunity to work in our dream jobs. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do the things that you love.
For me it’s blogging; for you it might be acting, singing, floristry or crafts. No matter what the outlet, make time for it. An hour doing the thing you love in the evening will bring you instant gratification.
Call a time out
Taking time out for yourself has some serious physical and psychological benefits.
It allows the body to relax & renew and the mind to focus & settle. So grab yourself a glass of wine, some dark chocolate, your favourite lush bath bomb, or whatever it is you need, and take a big ol’ time out.
Do you find yourself mindlessly scrolling through Instagram? STOP. Not only is it taking up time that could be put to better use but the constant feeds full of ‘perfect’ lives and ‘perfect’ bodies can be a catalyst of negative thinking.
If you can’t stop yourself from scrolling, then it’s time for a cull. Unfollow anyone that doesn’t bring something positive to your life. It may be harmless but the beautiful ‘fitspo’ Instagrammers you keep comparing yourself to aren’t bringing positivity and happiness to your life.
Move your body
Get the blood flowing & your heart rate raised. And it doesn’t have to be a hardcore HIIT session either – I find that a good stroll with the dog or a gentle yoga flow is the perfect pick me up.
The most important thing is finding a workout that you enjoy – not only is it more fun but you’re more likely to stick to it and the benefits, both physical & psychological, will be greater.
Let food be thy medicine and medicine be my food – Hippocrates.
Basically, what you put into your body, you get out of it. So nourish your body with good wholesome foods and you’ll not only look better, you’ll feel better too.
Fake it til you make it
When I’m feeling down I give myself a little smile to trick my brain into thinking it’s happy.
Or for those times when a smile just isn’t enough, I take a moment to myself to think of a happy place, a happy time or even look at some pictures that were taken on a cheery day. It might not work for everyone but it’s definitely worth a try!
It’s not always possible with the weather in the UK but sometimes all you need is to take in a bit of fresh air and have a relaxing walk (check out the benefits of walking here).
And if the suns shining, even better. We can get our recommended daily allowance of Vitamin D – low levels of which has been linked to mood changes, irritability and even depression.
Write it down
If you’re feeling down, write it down.
When your mind is racing it can help to get everything down on paper. Not only is it great to get all of your thoughts and feelings down on paper but I’d suggest taking several minutes every night to write down the days failures and successes, 3 things you’re grateful for and 3 things you want to achieve the following day.
It’ll be a weight off your mind.
And if all else fails, just go watch some funny videos on You Tube like the one below…
What makes you happier and/or healthier? Let me know in the comments below.