The article from Psychology Today identifies some things that you can do to make yourself feel happy.
If you’ve had a cancer diagnosis or experience as a friend or a family member, you’ll know how as well as the pain and trauma, there arrives an acute, intense sense of what is really important to you in your life. Its quite a profound experience for most people when we feel those extreme emotions at both ends of the range- acute fear facing our own mortality and profound joy at the connection with those we love
It’s easy to forget this over time but can you imagine if you were able to feel and act on this every single day it would be like having a life jacket when you can’t swim. If you were able to appreciate what you have, connect with nature, tell the people you love what they mean to you in simple small ways every day, what a difference that could make to you? A gift of connection to yourself and others and the world around you that you used to take for granted but can now savour. A lifejacket for the mind that you could unwrap every single day at the end of a bad day or at the beginning of a day that you knew was going to be awful that could help you keep going?
The thing is that it doesn’t have to be something fancy or expensive that you see as a gift. It could be the beautiful light at the start and end of these Spring days, it could be the silly joke your teenage daughter tells you when you are sat together discussing her day.
So a good way to do this is to write down in a notebook every single day at least 3 things that have been a gift to you today. The more you collect the more you train your mind to notice all the other good stuff and there is some good evidence to suggest from Positive Psychology to suggest this gratitude journal can be as effective as prozac in lifting your mood. Writing a gratitude journal doesn’t make life easy but it does make it a bit easier to get through those difficult dark moments when you see written down and remember what there is in your life to be grateful for.