What are your happiness triggers?

There’s so much talk about negative triggers but happiness triggers are super important. 

Instead of focusing on what we want to get rid of, we will be far happier and healthier if we focus on what we want – to feel happy.

A study in Europe discovered that a group of seniors improved astonishingly when they lived for a short period in a time capsule. Circumstances were created to match and mirror those of their youth – from music to the type of food, reading material and exercise. Their health was carefully monitored before and after the project. At the end significant improvements were noted in bone density, sight and hearing as well as health in general, and mental and emotional wellbeing.

These people found themselves in circumstances that drew on their youthful happy, positive thoughts and feelings and their brains and bodies responded accordingly.

Recently I happened upon a video of Paul McCartney singing “Hey Jude”. Instantly, I was singing along and remembering a time spent with a group of friends on a canal boat on the Norfolk Broads in England.  We were all young, carefree and spent hours and hours singing as we drifted along, fuelled by French bread, cheese and red wine. I glanced in the mirror and saw myself relaxed and smiling as I happily sang a song from decades ago. I’m sure my entire body and brain received a healthy boost of youthfulness.

Music is a wonderful mood enhancer. It can also take us into dark emotional places. The choice is ours.

Food affects our mood. It doesn’t just prevent us from starving or cause us to be overweight. The ingredients of a meal can affect our brain, body and emotions. Meals can take us back to times in our past and trigger a variety of emotions.  The first Christmas dinner after our parents died may feel like a sad occasion, until we are reminded of shared happy, crazy and joyful moments with our parents. Suddenly, sadness is transformed into laughter, gratitude and joy. Again, the choice is ours.

What gets you back in balance?

My two primary happiness tools are breath work and meditation.  Breath work quickly grounds me, and meditation seems to magically shed doubt and worry.

Happiness triggers. It is helpful to have a selection of things that can quickly change how we feel: a particular piece of music or song; exercise such as walking, running, dancing or swimming; reading, watching a movie or calling a friend.  The key is to be able to quickly feel happiness and so profoundly affect our mental, emotional and physical wellbeing.

We need to think about what brings happiness, not what makes us mad or sad.

Never try not to think of what you don’t want. If I ask you to try not to think about a purple elephant with yellow spots, what do you think of? A purple elephant with yellow spots – and then you try not to think about it!

Happiness is a choice.

Have a reserve of happiness triggers to draw from 24/7.

Wishing you love,

Gillian. 

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