If I had a dime for every time I heard the words, “I just want to be happy!” I would be loaded down with a million pounds of dimes! Everyone is on a quest for happiness, and happiness is a bit too abstract for me to actually work with on a physical level because what makes you happy and what makes me happy are likely to be different things. Energetically, though, there are certain physical and sensory cues that we can infuse into your living and working spaces to create a greater sense of vitality… and hopefully put a smile on your face. Here are my latest eight favorite ways to immediately add more happy vibes to homes and lives:
1. Add brighter, more fully-colored light. As days get darker much earlier in the Fall & Winter, sunlight becomes a precious commodity. More time indoors means more time that you are likely to steep in bad lighting. Bad lighting in my world is fluorescent or dim or too harsh. Bad light draws attention to itself in a bad way. Bad lighting makes you physically feel bad. Sunlight is actually used as a treatment for sleep disorders and depression, and you can help to mimic that light by trading your average bulbs for more “full-colored”, “full-spectrum” light bulbs that will re-color your home and add to your happiness quotient.
2. Rearrange a room for a day. You might not have the ability to redecorate. You may have always wanted to know what it would feel like to put the couch on the other wall, or the art in different configurations or the bed on a slant, etc., etc. Indulge yourself in a temporary re-arrange. It might not feel right or look right but it does give you a fresh perspective. If it’s not working, just move it all back to where it was. There is no harm in trying! In fact, if the new arrangement is not working you might just gain a greater appreciation for your present layout!
3. Flower essences are a new favorite holistic goodie in my arsenal of good vibrations. Flower essences are considered to be “vibrational medicine.” Made from soaking certain flowers in bowls of pure spring water in sunlight, they correct emotional imbalances without side effects. They are non-toxic and they are so powerful in my experience that it is worth seeking out a source near you for the best flower essences you can find. Specific flowers “correct” specific issues. For example, walnut is a flower essence that helps if you have a problem taking on the problems of others. A flower essence expert can guide you in selecting the correct blends for your specific emotional issues. Sadness or depression are too general of words sometimes to wrap our heads around; flowers address specific ways that we experience and express these emotions. I cannot tell you how utterly wild and unexpected and completely life-changing my experience has been working with a professional flower essence healer; I can’t recommend it enough!
4. Get a fish! Fish are calm and gorgeous and mobile and elegant. Fish are symbolic of prosperity. Fish bring moving water into your space, which promotes change. Fish do not have to be high-maintenance but they do need to be sparkling clean and maintained per their species, so choose wisely and please research fish care first so you don’t end up with a dead fish. A Betta fish, for example, will likely not do well in your cold office. I am gearing up for a new fish, myself. One note on this: bedrooms aren’t the best place for fish, nor are bathrooms (too close to the toilet!), so if you have a studio apartment do the best you can to integrate your guppy into the areas farthest from your bed and bath.
5. Move 27 things. This is hyper-simple: if the kind of sadness you are feeling includes a sense of being stuck, not making progress, being restless, etc., pick something up beside you (I am holding scissors right now… I am about to move them to a drawer) and move it to a new place. Then move another object, and then another until you have moved 27 objects. Moving this many objects is generally enough to snap you into a more present and active frame of mind!
6. Try some aromatherapy. Essential oils affect us on many levels, depending on their application. You can wear them or bathe in them (in which case they are absorbed through the skin), diffuse or spray them into the air, cook with them, clean with them… the possibilities are endless! Sandalwood, rose, lavender oils are fairly common essential oils that can help life your spirits while keeping you calm. A single drop of blood orange essential oil in a bath is thought to create spontaneous joy! Before putting a few drops in your bath or sprinkling them on your wrist or pillow, patch test each essential oil to be sure you are not allergic by putting a drop or two on your forearm and watching to see if you have a reaction. Even if you have no reaction, start slowly with each new essential oil as they are extremely concentrated and potent. Also, go for the good stuff where essential oils are concerned; therapeutic grade essential oils are less likely to be tampered with, diluted, or distilled in ways that rob the oil’s essential energy and effectiveness.
7. Stand straighter and enhance the verticals. I like to watch people walk past me and guess things about them. People standing straight and walking with purpose have a way of just wowing you with their bravado. The slouchy folks who stare at their feet look broken, ineffective, sad and defeated. We communicate with our bodies quite loudly and great posture will go the extra mile in create a greater sense of energy in a day. Even if you feel terrible on a given day, standing tall will raise you up and help you to fake it until your emotions catch up to your actions. In your home, enhancing the vertical lines, hanging art a bit higher, adding a tall vertical accessory like a vase or a lamp that faces upward and sends light toward the sky all help that sense of good posture and help you to keep your head up!
8. Fix or repurpose what is broken. This is easy to say, but very hard at times to motivate to actually do! Hire a handyman for a day if you cannot motivate yourself to get your home repairs done yourself, as every day you wait will be another day you live with disrepair on the physical plane! If you need advice on a fix-it situation, there are hundreds of blogs here on the Internet that are waiting to hear your questions and help advise you on solutions.
Also, my bonus words on happiness for the day: We can’t all be happy all the time. Challenges, struggles, tough days, and rain build character and fuel life while helping the sun shine brighter when it does shine!