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It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when things get tough, and more often than not, just doing a few small things can really help you to feel a little bit more happy in as little as 5 minutes.
We all have down days. We all experience times when you sit down and just thing ‘F*** it’. ‘I can’t be bothered’. ‘I don’t want to’. It’s natural. We’re only human. What is really important to remember, however, is that it is just a phase. It will pass. You will feel okay when that dreaded meeting at work is over or your toddler’s tooth has finally cut through or when your partner texts you apologising for the argument.
I thought I’d write down my tips on how to feel happier. How to make that phase shorter. How to get the motivation to sit up and say ‘Right, come on. You can do it’.
Note: Not a psychologist. Not an expert. Just a woman who gets easily stressed and often needs to practice what she preaches. Here are my top 5 ways to feel happy in just 5 minutes.
We are surrounded by so much technology nowadays that sometimes its hard to remember to switch off. If you’re starting to feel stressed or upset, the first thing you should do is switch off. Turn off the TV and put your phone to airplane mode. We’re so obsessed with whatever series on Netflix we’re watching or updating our social media we don’t realise that we need a break from it. We all secretly know staring at the screen can’t be good for our brains! I can pretty much guarantee that a break from screens will fast track you to feeling happier in 5 minutes.
Yeah, it sounds silly when someones telling you to ‘breathe in…breathe out…’ but it WORKS. If you’re stressed, upset, angry, panicking, or just a little down – concentrating on breathing is such a simple remedy to control so many emotions. Close your eyes. Lay on the floor if you can – it helps, trust me. Place one hand on your belly and one on your chest. Now really focus. You want to breathe for as long as you can with it still being comfortable. If you’re feeling panicky, you’ll probably have really short sharp breaths so you want to slow it down every time you breathe in until you’ve reached a steady, relaxing speed. You need to make your out breaths longer than your in breaths, in for 4, hold for 4, out for 8 is always a good place to start. Always listen to your body and do whats best for you. Pair this with picturing yourself in a safe, happy place and you’ll be happy in as little as 5 minutes for sure!
I find that when I feel upset, I look at myself in a different way. I’m experiencing a rush of emotion, so I will look in the mirror and think ‘ugh I look a mess’. It works the other way too – if I look a mess, I will start feeling like a mess. Thats why another tip is to take a bath or shower – whatever you prefer – and have a pamper. Wash your hair. Leave that hair mask on for 30 minutes – your split ends will thank you in the morning. Put a face mask on. Paint your nails. Pluck your eyebrows. Just spend time relaxing and pampering your body. ‘Your body is your temple’ – so look after it!
Who doesn’t like clean bed sheets!? If you want to take it to the next level, shave your legs, moisturise and slip on some fresh PJ’s before you go to sleep. Add fresh bed covers to the mix and you will feel like you’re on a lovely fluffy silky cloud. (Although no one will judge you if you choose not to shave your legs. Still just as fluffy a cloud). If you’re struggling to sleep, try some sleep sprays or oils.
You’ve switched off. You’re clean and fresh. What better to do than spend some time doing a hobby which makes you happy. A lot of us will think ‘I don’t have a hobby’ but a hobby can be anything and sometimes it takes a while to find the right one for you. I definitely think if you’re someone who spends a lot of time watching films or TV or on your computer, you should try to find a hobby which doesn’t involve technology, just to make sure you’re getting a break every now and then… but in the same breath, if finally catching up on the top 10 TV series on Netflix is what makes you happy – go for it. I never used to have a hobby – when I realised this, I started to make the conscious decision to make time for blogging, crocheting or making jewellery… and now, they’re my favourite past times! If you’re not sure where you can start – why not get in the kitchen and whip up my yummy tea bread recipe? This one might take a little bit longer than just 5 minutes, admittedly – but it will make you happy!
Try to remember these tips if you feel yourself getting into that ‘I just want to sit around and do nothing’ mood. Just remember: its a phase, and sometimes the simplest of things can make you feel better again.