This is not an extensive list by any means but, when I start to feel blue, this is my checklist. I hope it’s useful to you… x
1 Get to bed
You must get enough sleep – without it, everything feels wrong. Aim for at least five sleep cycles per night. A sleep cycle is about 90 minutes, so that’s at least 7.5 hours.
2 Eat your greens
They make you feel – and look – so much better. You need to be having at least three portions of vegetables a day, and at least two portions of fruit. Fruits with happy-inducing stuff are bananas and kiwi fruit. Other happy foods are mung beans, asparagus, pineapple, ginger, lemongrss, spinach, blackberries, soybeans, sunflower seeds and tofu.
3 Go outside
The sunshine gives you vitamin D which helps to make you happy and healthy. You need at least 10 minutes in the sunshine every day. It doesn’t work through your coat so show some skin.
4 Take a hike
Or run, cycle, swim, play on your Wii, get off the bus two stops early… Whatever it takes to get your heart rate up so you’re a bit out of breath, for 15 minutes, three times a week. Exercise releases hormones which improve your mood.
5 Love thy neighbour
Do something nice for someone else (hold the door open for someone, make a colleague a cup of tea, help a harassed mother off the bus with a pram…) without expecting anything in return, just for the joy it gives you to do a selfless act.
6 Take time out
Take 30 minutes every day to completely relax. Read your book, have a bath, listen to some music, go and sit in a coffee shop, go have a massage/manicure… without interruption. Do something relaxing for yourself, on your own, every day.
7 Have a comedy moment
Comedy is a great mood booster, so watch humourous TV, read a funny book, or call/spend time with a friend who makes you laugh; it’ll help to lighten your mood.
8 Love and be loved
Spend some time at least a couple of times a week with people you know love and appreciate you. If you can’t be with them, get them on the phone.
9 Appreciate the good stuff
It’s too easy to focus on the bad stuff, so an easy way to focus on the good stuff is to keep a happy book. A small book in which you write three things a day which have gone well, e.g. I got a seat and a Metro on the train, I’m having a good hair day, a friend texted to ask how I am. Doesn’t have to be a lottery win. Try it for a week, you’ll be amazed at your change in perspective.
10 Have a word with yourself
You don’t have to be the best of the best to be wonderful, you’re already wonderful; you’re a special, unique package of all the things that make you YOU. Keep reminding yourself that you deserve to be happy.