Haven’t we heard it all- pearls of wisdom, secrets to a long life, shortcuts to happiness etc etc. The other day I was listening to a radio show and the RJ was reading out from a list – 30 ways to be happy, or something like that, and what was in that list really made sense. I mean it was not some unachievably nonsensical things like “Think high quality thoughts” or Forgive and forget” or “Achieve inner harmony” etc etc. it was simple achievable things like “Read a comic book” “Look at your old photos” “Watch the sun rise” etc etc. I have my own list. It might not make you happy, but it works for me. You may have heard of them somewhere before, but well I never claimed to be original when it comes to this subject.
Get a good night’s sleep: If I don’t get my seven hours my whole day is spoiled, headaches and dizzy spells and general grouchiness envelops me all day. Get a sound sleep, wake up, take a refreshing bath; it’s one of the best feelings in the world, and you’ll feel ready to take on the most challenging things in the world.
Get in touch with your old friends: This is one thing you should do. I'm not saying go to every class reunion just because you sat with them in a classroom fifteen years ago, but track down your old buddies, make that phone call, send that email, I guarantee you it’s a nice feeling. Recently an old friend of mine emailed me out of the blue and it felt good being remembered.
Smile and the world smiles back: I'm quite a miser when it comes to smiles. People have asked me many times why I am so serious and so unsmiling; so I tried to be a bit more cheerful and a bit generous with the smiles and to my surprise I didn’t look like an empty headed fool - people actually smiled back.
Do something you love: This is a bit tricky. We’ve all heard the saying “Do something you love (for a living) and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.” Finding something you truly love is very difficult, especially for someone as vague and oscillating as me. I'm still looking, still trying to figure out what makes me really happy, what kind of work I will never get bored doing for the next forty years.
Clean up: Inside out. Clean your house, clean your room, scrub that bathroom floor, and dust that shelf. Empty your thoughts, your feelings, tell it to someone or to your diary.
Can’t forget? Try forgiving: Don’t hold grudges, it will only fester inside you without the other person ever knowing and in the end it is you who suffer. You don’t have to go and tell the other party how you’ve forgiven him/her and make a spectacle of yourself, forgiving is inside the heart. Once you’ve decided to forgive, that wound which was unhealed automatically gets itself healed, making space in you for more wonderful feelings and emotions.
Laugh: Read a funny book, watch a funny video, laugh at something funny your friend has posted online, talk to someone who makes you laugh. Do it in the morning before you leave for work/college. It will be with you all day and will help you get through a difficult day. This has always worked for me, but the side effect is that you will remember that funny thing at the most inappropriate times, so self control is very much required. But laugh inside.
And last but not the least - go shopping.