I recently read that Seattle has the 2nd most depressing winter in the United States. And then I got to thinking… How do I keep myself from being devoured in the Seattle downpour?
This year, I adopted a few new habits to help keep me in a positive state of mind as I’m facing the dreary weather that is rapidly approaching. These little tricks have greatly helped me so far. I know they can help you, too!
1. Wake Up and Immediately Start Moving
It’s too damn easy to wake up and lay in bed for a few hours. I’ve found that by hopping out of bed as soon as my alarm goes off, I’ve already rewired my brain towards a day of productivity and overall well being. My very first action of the day is to walk down the hall and brush my teeth.
2. Morning Affirmations
I’ve written and displayed my personal morning affirmations near my bathroom mirror. I spend a good portion of my morning getting ready, so I found this to be the best place for them. I read my affirmations aloud every morning. It’s a mini-pep talk that inspires and motivates me to have an incredible day. My favorite:
The best thing about affirmations is that they are yours. Get creative with your affirmations, personalize them to fit you. It’s your pep talk, after all.
3. Make the Bed
It’s simple. Too simple, really, but incredibly effective. I’m not going to elaborate. Just make your damn bed. It’s one small task that you’ve completed before you’ve even left the house. Look at you go, you task-completing badass! 😉
4. Drink Water As Often as Possible
Water is essential, I’m sure you know that by now. Personally, just the act of drinking water makes me feel better. It’s cleansing, refreshing, and is so important for overall health. And hey, if you’re feeling extra healthy, throw a cucumber or two in there.
I was gifted a Simple Modern water bottle from an old boss (bless her), and now I’m able to drink water continuously throughout the day.
Sidenote: I am in LOVE with this water bottle. At my current job, I’ve recommended it to everyone. Six of my co-workers have purchased one for themselves.
5. Smile at a Few New Faces
This one is usually the toughest for me. Making eye contact with strangers? Geez, it makes my palms sweaty just writing about it! However, I make sure to at least try. Smiling at a few new faces gets me out of my head (where I usually am), and helps me feel like I’m spreading joy. Smiling is contagious, and you never know who just might need to see a friendly smile.
6. Express Gratitude
A few years ago, my family and I decided to participate in a Grateful Challenge. It wasn’t very formal, just a group text where we would each list at least 3 things we were grateful for that day. I found that even on the hard days, I was always able to find small things that I was grateful for.
I found this picture (left) many years ago, and cherish it dearly. It definitely puts things in perspective, and helps keep me humble.
For example, this Happiness Genius (what I’ve decided to call the author of this grateful gloriousness) over here:
“I am thankful for the taxes I pay because it means that I am employed.”
Well, listen. I’m going to be completely straight with you. This is not something I that ever thought to be grateful for, but this Happiness Genius may be on to something.
As I’ve always said, “I’ve learned, and am still learning!”
7. Reach Out to a Loved One
Because I’m a reasonable distance from a lot of my family and friends, I’ve made it a point to reach out to at least 2-3 of my friends and/or family each day. Knowing that I have people who care about me, both near and far, leaves a positive impact on my day.
Technology has made it vastly accessible to get in touch with just about anybody, and I’m all for it. I know that we all get busy, but I also know that it doesn’t take much to send a text or leave a voicemail and let someone know that I’m thinking about them.
8. Spritz Yo Self
A quick spritz of my favorite body spray or perfume does wonders for my mood. It’s a instant moment of bliss that leaves a lasting impression. My go-to scent right now is Very Sexy by Victoria Secret. It makes me feel… well, sexy! I also recommend Hawaiian or tropical scents. Those are especially helpful for me when it’s gray and gloomy outside.
9. Give a Compliment
The best way to have a great day is to help others have a great day, too! It is so easy to compliment others and requires little to no effort at all. So many people are walking around with their own insecurities (I know I do!), so why not help them to feel good about themselves? Helping others feel happiness will always improve your day.
10. Dance and Sing Whenever Possible
Imagine you’re stuck in traffic. (A horrible thought, I know.) Now, imagine your favorite song comes on. Ok, now it doesn’t seem so bad. You start tapping the steering wheel. The lyrics are flowing out of your mouth. Before you know it, your shoulders are moving back and forth; your foot can’t resist tapping along to the beat!
That’s the beauty of music. If you’re in a funk, put some music on. See how it transforms your mood. It makes even the most mundane of tasks (i.e. traffic!) a bit more bearable.
So do the damn thing, and remember to dance and sing along the way.
What are some ways you improve your day?
I’d love to know! Comment below!