How often do you stop and consider what is really important to you in life? What fills up your ‘happiness cup’?
We have so many choices available to us these days, it can often feel overwhelming to decide how to spend our time! When we are very busy its impossible to know what truly sings to our heart. When we press the pause button (mindfulness) we can take some time to really tune into our hearts desire and live from a place of deeper meaning and joy.
I enjoy taking time on a regular basis to connect and reflect with what fills up my happiness cup.
These are my six ingredients……
This is an absolute must for me! When I connect with nature I feel happier and healthier.
Nature helps me feel better emotionally and physically. I take my breathing practice into the woods on a regular basis. I feel like nature offers me an opportunity to ‘plug’ back into mother earth, to sink into my own roots and hear my own wisdom.
I personally love trees (and yes, I do hug them sometimes!) but some people are more attracted to the water and prefer to be by the sea. How can you get out in nature on a regular basis? No distractions, just to hear all the amazing sounds it has to offer you.
Being in nature actually does good stuff for our health. In one study in Mind, 95% of the people interviewed said their mood improved after spending time outside, changing from depressed, stressed, and anxious to more calm and balanced. Other studies by Ulrich, Kim, and Cervinka show that time in nature or scenes of nature are associated with a positive mood, and psychological wellbeing, meaningfulness, and vitality.
Is nature calling you?
We can take life so seriously….and seriously we don’t always need to!
Play is so important. I played lots as a child and then had a huge gap when I stopped being playful. Over the last few years I have really made an effort to invite more play time into my life and I love having fun! At first it felt awkward, but I soon came to realise that I thought play was just for children. The power of limiting beliefs eh?!
Play for me includes dancing, laughing, being silly with my daughter and often taking myself on workshops that take me right out of my comfort zone and allow me to grow as a human being.
I love food! I really do. But not just any food! I love food that is colourful and tastes amazing.
I spend a good amount of time each day in the kitchen experimenting with recipes and testing new things out on my family (mostly with success!!)
We mostly follow a plant based diet in our family home and there is something really nurturing about giving your body healthy stuff. My body definitely thanks me for it too.
4. Daily practice
This is vital for me. Every day I pledge to myself to do something that deepens my own self enquiry and clears space on my spiritual path. This could be some time in silence, meditation, nature, dancing, yoga, reading, connecting. This is my way of saying a great big YES to life!
At times in life when I have dropped my practice I have noticed that my stability waivers, I don’t feel as connected to planet earth or others and eventually stress can creep in.
Daily practice is my must for wellbeing on many levels.
My practice has become less of a thing to do and more like an act of love to myself and this makes me happy.
5. Helping others
It feels really good to me to help others. Its been like this as long as I can remember so I guess i could say it comes naturally. Helping others can come in different ways:-
- Volunteering my time at a local place that needs help
- Spending time with a friend in need holding the space for support
- Creating a empathic space in the community for others to connect
Recent research has shown that we are hard wired for for love and compassion and that communities thrive when we care and look out for each other. There are many physical benefits to being kind. It is good for the immune system. Kindness releases oxytocin which makes me feel all warm and lovely on the inside. It also releases . Acts of kindness lower blood pressure, helps protect the heart, relaxes the nervous system, boosts the immune system…and it slows down the ageing process which is why I look so young!!
I like to keep it real! We are all humans on this path of life, all doing our best with the tools we have.
I like to check in with myself regularly to make sure I am on the right tracks for me. That means living a life of purpose rather than just existing, doing plenty of things that fill me with joy and having plenty of down time in between.
A study was once carried out by a palliative care nurse in Australia. She spoke to many people who were close to the end of their lives and asked them ‘what are your top 5 regrets’.
The top regret was that they had not lived a life true to themselves.
If we are busy, dashing from one thing to another we will never know what this actually is on a personal level. When we slow, pause and come to rest we can hear all our inner wisdom. Its all there for each of us.
What really makes you happy?
Take a moment to pause and really connect with the space around your heart. What are you doing when you are at your most happiest? How does it feel? Where is your happy place?