I spent a whole lot of years, including part of the recent one, struggling with depression, hopelessness, and feelings of unworthiness. And probably a whole lot of other things that I am not going to take the time to list. Very, very few people had any clue what was going on inside me. It has stayed mostly hidden (or people have been polite enough not to say anything) behind a mask of professionalism, or what some call “faking it till you make it.”
Because of that, I am very attracted to titles like, Happy Every Day: Simple Effective Ways to Better Days, by Bryan Hutchinson. I got an email about it through a website I subscribe to, and thought, why not? It’s free, and all I have to do is leave a review.
Now, I’m not going to say that the book was anything super spectacular, or that it changed my life beyond belief. The chapters were short, very conversational, and he had some practical advice. Most are things that I have heard before.
And that’s it.
How many times have I gone to people and asked for advice? And nothing changed after?
Too many to count.
I never put their good advice into practice. That is one thing I realized on reading this book. I get to choose my attitude and what I let have a place in my mind. Part of changing what goes on up there is choosing actions that back it up. And I am simply talking about choosing to be happy, not about joy. That runs so much deeper and comes from another place altogether. That being said, here are a few of my favorite suggestions:
Find something that makes you laugh, and just laugh.
Look for the good things.
Take time to be thankful, and journal those things.
Even if it is only a couple moments, spend time doing something that makes you smile.
I am by no means trivializing depression or anything. I’m just saying a part of mine was allowing myself to run all the horrible thoughts and feelings over and over in my brain. I gave them free reign, and they took it. As a result, I’ve missed out on some pretty great things in life, like healthy relationships with awesome people.