Happiness in Practice…

Last month’s newsletter was about the secrets of living a happy and fulfilling life: love, gratitude, and presence, which were beautifully portrayed in the movie “About Time.”  These concepts become more meaningful and important around the holidays when we have more quality time to spend with loved ones and reflect on how we spent our time this year and what it has meant. Here are some ways to put these concepts into everyday practice, which I have found helpful throughout this year to reduce stress.

10 Ways to Practice Love, Gratitude and Presence:

  • Spend time having fun and laughing with family, friends and co-workers engaging in good conversation and fun activities.
  • Start every day and end every day thinking about all of the things you love and are grateful to have in your life – everything from big wins to the simple things we take for granted like the ability to use our 5 senses. There is no greater recipe for happiness and success than expressing gratitude. Watch this video about gratitude for ideas.
  • Write down 5 news things you are grateful for every day.
  • Spend 10-15 minutes every day in meditation or just being quiet and still.
  • Spend 10-15 minutes each day doing something that you love to do that fills you with joy – whether it be a hobby you enjoy, playing with your kids, or petting your dog or cat.
  • Listen to music that uplifts you and puts you in a good mood; pay attention to the lyrics and the sound of the music.
  • Treat yourself to your favorite food that you absolutely love. Eat it slowly, focusing only on the taste of it without any distractions that take your focus away from the experience.
  • Engage in physical exercise (walking, running, weight lifting, yoga, etc.) and focus only on doing the activity without reading, watching TV, or listening to music.
  • Get a massage and focus totally on the experience by being present in your body rather than in your head thinking about being somewhere else.
  • Do your best to practice mindfulness throughout the day by paying attention to whatever you are doing and the experience of it – how it looks, feels, sounds, etc. instead of thinking about other things. Make noticing a regular practice.

I wish you a very happy and healthy holiday season and a wonderful new year. Enjoy every minute of it – now is the only time we have. May you live your best life each and every day.

 “The power of Now is none other than the power of your presence, your consciousness liberated from thought forms.” – Eckhart Tolle

 “Give attention to the present; give attention to your behavior, to your reactions, moods, thoughts, emotions, fears, and desires as they occur in the present.” – Eckhart Tolle

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