There is a lot in life we cannot control. For myself, living with an autoimmune disease, Type 1 Diabetes, there is certainly alot in life I cannot control. I can’t control that my body wants to “attack itself” on the daily. I can do the same thing each day, take the same amount of medicine, and yet still experience very different results each day. I can do my best, but sometimes my disease takes over.
But what I can control? My response. My decision to choose joy even when I want to give up. I can do my best to nourish myself, to seek help and ultimately to choose joy!
The emotion of joy puts your body in a positive state both physically and emotionally. Anything you can do to increase joy will greatly impact your health. Yes, it is said that happy people, content people and those that laugh often live longer, have stronger immune systems and experience less health issues!
5 Ways to Add More Joy To Your Day
Walk + Move
Walking truly has become like therapy to me—I started consistently walking daily after my miscarriage and it has brought so much healing to my days. Walking not only gets your blood flowing, lymph moving and oxygen circulating to your body, but it also releases endorphins, which are chemicals released by the body that sort of act like “natural painkillers” and make us happy!
And, just as I have experienced in my own life, many therapists agree that walking can be a form of “therapy” as it physically moves you forward—walking can help clear your mind and help you become “un-stuck” as you are physically and psychologically moving forward.
Anytime I am feeling down, tired or lacking in drive and creativity, I try to get out and move, soaking in the fresh air and sunshine, and its always amazing how instantly my mood is boosted! I always joke that some of my best ideas are created during walks, but it really is so true!
Quite literally one of the best ways to add more joy to your day is to choose it. And, no, it’s not always easy!
There is so much in life we cannot control—but there is much in life we can control, and one of the biggest things we can control is our reaction to our circumstances! Bad things happen and it is ok to be frustrated or upset, that is just a natural reaction. But choosing to constantly dwell on the bad and let that determine your day is no way to live!
Ultimately you have to choose joy. words I have tattooed on my arm as a constant reminder. I firmly believe that even in the difficult times, there is a greater plan! Choose to focus on the positive, find the silver lining and find the beauty in the pain.
Snuggle a Baby, Puppy or Your Favorite Human
Oxytocin, the love hormone, is released when snuggling or hugging! Oxytocin and cortisol (the stress hormone) are on opposing teams, so when one goes up the other goes down—translation: when you boost your oxytocin, you naturally decrease your cortisol and stress levels. Stress is a thief of joy, so anyway you can decrease stress you will naturally increase joy in your day. Plus, who can resist cute babies or puppies?!
Admiring the beauty of this world we live in, and most importantly finding beauty in the little things of life, will boost your mood and bring joy to your day. Take pleasure in life’s little moments like watching a sunset, admiring the flowers or trees as you walk, buying fresh flowers for your home or sharing a beautiful moment together with a loved one.
Commit + Accomplish
For the achievers, Type A personalities like myself, accomplishing a task can bring so much contentment and joy to the day. Putting off tasks or dreams only delays the inevitable and can leave you feeling frustrated and discontent with yourself, putting your physical and emotional being in a negative state!
So make a list and start accomplishing a test completely, make sure to tie up the loose ends so that you get that you get to experience the full satisfaction and contentment emotion! Don’t forget to add taking care of yourself to that to-do list—making self-care a priority will make you a happier human but also allow you to serve others better.