Keep Choosing JOY! || The Secret of a Happy Life
Sometimes, life is hard. Like really hard. BUT, I don’t think it needs to be as hard as we often make it for ourselves. There are plenty of things we can do to simplify our lives, relieve the burden of stress, and stop from feeling overwhelmed. Mindful consumption is one of them (and I'm not just talking about food!) 🥕
When you practice mindfulness in your daily life, it means you consciously look at what you surround yourself with by choice with a heightened awareness of how you feel. More importantly, you notice what is bringing you joy, and what is taking it away. Everything from the foods you eat, to the TV shows you watch, to the internet sites you browse, to the people you surround yourself with and the places you go. It’s amazing how much we take in and consume with our minds and bodies everyday!
Everything we interact with actually has an effect on our moods, health, and wellbeing. Where our attention goes our energy flows and by spending time with certain music, people, foods etc. we start to vibrate with, and become more "like" these things.
If we want to live a new, happier life, we must begin to surround ourselves with and focus upon the things that uplift and expand us. A good indicator for what isn't serving you is anything that leaves you feeling drained or irritable. For me a big one was reading the news and being on facebook - for some reason I found that I felt sick every time I did. I worried that if I stopped, I would miss out or be uninformed. But It's been 4 years since I deleted my facebook and stopped reading/watching the news and I've never looked back!! I find people tell me the things I need to know and I've been able to tap into my more authentic and original thoughts without all the "noise".
Next, I stopped watching TV shows with a lot of negativity. Not only did this free up a lot of time, it also helped me to clear my mind and focus more on what’s important to me! Once I got going, it was hard to stop. I deleted most of my social media except Instagram (off the grid, baby!) cleaned out my music library, and became much more conscious of with whom, and where I spent my time.
If this sounds like something you're interested in, here's how to start! Grab your journal or open your notes app and:
Go through a typical days activities in your mind (from social engagements, to tv shows, and the foods you eat) and write them out in list form in your journal.
For each of these activities, notice more how you feel before, during and after engaging with it. Write that down too.
Make a list of people, places, activities, books, foods etc. that make you feel expansive, empowered or just a little happier!
Slowly phase out the activities that drain your energy, or consistently leave you feeling worse and make a conscious effort to do [way] more of what feels good every single day. For me this is stuff like meditating, going outside, listening to podcasts, dancing, being on Pinterest, eating kale... you get the idea!
If you're moving through your day making decisions and find yourself unsure of whether or not to do something: take a deep breath, place one hand over your heart and notice how your body feels when you think about [insert decision or topic]. If you feel more expansive, spacious and clear that's a YES, and if you feel contracted, tense or small, that's a NO.
All this might sound like a lot of work but it really isn’t! My life has become so much simpler in a truly beautiful way. I feel happier, more clear-minded and more importantly: ALIVE! Being aware of the choices I make everyday and how they're affecting me, and then adjusting and moving towards what feels good has allowed me to live a far richer and more fulfilling life. A life that feels true to me.
I wish this for everyone ☺️
With great JOY,