Here are nine simple things that you can do to add joy to your life everyday.
1. Go for a nature walk
Spending time outside has many benefits, including boosting your mood. I always find that a nature walk makes me feel better and helps to clear my head. During my walk, I like to focus on what is around me (birds, trees, squirrels, etc). If the trail follows a river, pond or lake, it brings me even more joy. What do you like to see and hear on your nature walks?
2. Send a text
Send a text to someone to let them know you are thinking of them. It can be short and simple, such as “Just thinking of you today.” Text messages are perfect for introverts, as you can control when you respond. Try sending a text today – it will bring a smile to your face and to theirs!
3. Appreciate the simple pleasures in life
Remember to pause a few times a day and appreciate what is around you. It could be smelling your cup of coffee or tea in the morning. It could be watching a beautiful sunset. A quick pause that stills your active mind, even for a minute, will bring you calm in a busy day.
4. You don’t have to be happy all the time
Start by acknowledging that bad feelings and bad moments are temporary. Remind yourself that you don’t have to be happy all the time. That’s not how life works. You will have good moments and you will have bad moments. Remember that the bad moments will pass. More importantly, remember to let yourself fully enjoy the good moments.
“I learned that we can do anything, but we can’t do everything … at least not at the same time. So, think of your priorities not in terms of what activities you do, but when you do them. Timing is everything.” – Dan Millman. Do you ever feel like you have so many things that you want to do, but there’s not enough time? Time is a limited resource that we need to use wisely. Focus on what is really important at this stage in your life and defer the rest for later.
6. Stop saying “Should”
Telling yourself that you “should” do something will only bring a heavy weight to your body and your mind. If you are doing something because you feel like you “should” be doing it will probably mean that you have to force yourself to do it. Are you living life in an authentic way? Or are you living your life according to the expectations of others? For example, introverts are often told they “should” be more social. Except that is not true to our nature. What we really need is to focus on fewer but more meaningful relationships.
7. Be true to your nature
Not everyone is the same. Just because extroverts love being around other people, talking all the time and thrive in large groups doesn’t mean an introvert should try to do these things. Be true to your nature and do what works for you. For example, for an introvert that means scheduling alone time, giving yourself time to think before you respond and spending time with smaller groups.
8. Embrace simplicity
We live in a culture that tells us to hustle and to do more. However, that often leaves us feeling drained. Instead, opt for a simpler life. Focus on what’s important and give those things top priority in your life. I suggest limiting your focus to 3-5 things. Here’s a list of ten areas to chose from: health, family, friends, relationships, work/career/mission, finances, adventure, hobby, spirituality and emotion.
9. Embrace imperfection
Don’t try to be perfect at everything. One disadvantage of pursuing perfection is that it may take you longer to complete your tasks, or worse, lead to avoidance. Instead, embrace the attitude of “good enough”. This attitude will also encourage you to try new things. As the saying goes, “variety is the spice of life.”
What will you do today to add some joy to your life?
Until my next blog post, here’s wishing you lots of joy and happiness!