Monday, November 21, 2005

The secrets of happiness!

There is a BBC programme at the moment called Making Slough Happy - BBC2 on Tuesday's I think. As part of the programme, a group of scientists have done research and have come up with 10 steps which if taken, make the person doing them, happy.

there's more on this in the lifestyle section of the BBC website, but here are the ten steps;

1. Get physical
Exercise for half an hour three times a week. Regular exercise improves your sense of wellbeing and reduces stress.

2. Count your blessings At the end of each day, reflect on at least five things you're grateful for. Everyone has things in their life for which they can be grateful.

3. Talk time. Have an hour-long uninterrupted conversation with your partner or closest friend each week.

4. Plant something
Even if it's a window-box or pot plant. Keep it alive! Growing plants gives a sense of achievement. You could grow some herbs on your kitchen windowsill.

5. Cut your TV viewing by half. Too much TV is linked to unhappiness.

6. Smile at and/or say hello to a stranger. At least once a day. Smiling has a real positive effect, not only on making you feel better, but also on other people around you.

7. Phone a friend. Make contact with at least one friend or relation you've not been in contact with for a while and arrange to meet up.

8. Have a good laugh at least once a day. It's often said that laughter is the best medicine!

9. Every day make sure you give yourself a treat. And take time to really enjoy it!

10. Daily kindness. Do an extra good turn for someone each day.

How many of these do you already do? How can you build in more happiness into your life?

making a difference

I went to the Wellness Show this weekend, an event held at Newcastle racecourse which has exhbitors and seminars to do with a whole range of wellness related fields, nutrition, exercise, alternative therapy, meditation and personal development. I attanded a seminar with life coach Jayne Goldstone. Her company is called Making A Difference and as part of her talk she reminded me of that Ghandi quote, and I paraphrase, "be the difference you wish to see in the world". Such a simple idea but not one that many of us grasp!

So here's todays thought and challenge - what could YOU change, about yourself or something else within your control, that would make a difference, to you and to those around you? If you chose one area of your life where you could make a change for the better, what would it be?