5. Ways to write yourself happy

Welcome to my blog about writing to have a stronger sense of yourself and a stronger mental health! Basically, the goal is to write yourself to be the strongest YOU possible. I have decided to post this blog on Tuesday mornings rather than Mondays. This will hopefully make me and everyone happier.

So,… speaking of Happiness- What is it? It’s hard to define because sometimes we think of it in a way that’s unrealistic, like happy happy joy joy all the time- and if you’re not that, then maybe you’re not happy. But, that’s simply not true.

Happiness is an overall sense of wellbeing. It’s about noticing the good things in your life and how your body notices when you feel good. Today’s exercises are not meant to make you feel joy all the time. In fact, if you felt joy ALL the time, would you know it’s joy? Probably not.

To get to happy, the goal is to notice when you feel good and to enjoy the good moments. We must practice allowing our brain to feel good, especially if it is often feeling sad or unhappy. Of course, we don’t always have good times, that’s not what human life is about, so, part of happiness is also knowing we are going to be okay when the going gets rough. As a species, we are resilient. We need to be resilient and knowing we can handle hard things can also provide reassurance that we’ll be okay, that’s also a part of general wellbeing and happiness.

Here are 5 writing exercises to boost your happiness:

  1. Try to take time each evening, or a little while before you go to sleep, to write about something in that day that felt good or that was nice. It can be large or small, but just notice it. Keep it positive. If you have more than one thing to notice that was good or made you feel good, that’s great! Write as much as you want or as little, the key is to do it every day. I would say forever, but that feels long, so try to do it every day this week. At least just to start.
  2. How you see the world impacts your mental wellbeing. Or put another way, your beliefs affect your emotional experiences. Write about how you see the world in a positive way. This doesn’t have to be long and if you feel like you start to say one thing is positive and then you add, but… Don’t do the but… There are a million things we might be able to write about the world in a negative way, but what to write here is what you see as positive.
  3. Make smiling faces in the mirror. Write about your smile. What kind of smile do you have? What do you look like when you laugh? Can you describe it? Once you smile, the brain acknowledges it feels good and likes it and that boosts the feelings of happiness and joy.
  4. Write about nature. Look out the window if you are somewhere where you can see nature or go a park or outside somewhere there is nature. Observe what you see in the natural world. Be sure to stop and smell flowers, touch a tree trunk, run your fingers through dirt or grass. And at the very least, notice these things around you. Observing nature, wherever you may be, makes you feel happier.
  5. Play music and write to it. Play your favorite happy song or a happy song that you like, that makes you want to move. Write about how it makes you feel. If it makes you want to move, then move, dance, let your body groove to the beat and write about how this music makes you want to do that.

Being happy is sometimes work. Don’t feel like it should just be, make an effort for yourself, for your wellbeing and happiness. You deserve that. Thank you for reading this and for writing. To write about ourselves is hard and brave.

Thank you for tuning in and allowing this time for yourself.

Until next Tuesday…

Best,

Liza

Published by lizawolfffrancis

Liza Wolff-Francis is a poet and writer with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Goddard College who is proud to have served two terms as a member of the Albuquerque Poet Laureate Program’s Selection Committee. She was co-director for the 2014 Austin International Poetry Festival and a member of the 2008 Albuquerque Poetry Slam Team. She has an ekphrastic poem posted in Austin’s Blanton Art Museum by El Anatsui’s sculpture “Seepage” and her work has most recently appeared in Steam Ticket, eMerge, Minute Magazine, Weaving the Terrain: 100 Word Southwestern Poems, Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, Poetic Routes, Poetry Pacific, Edge, and on various blogs. She has a chapbook out called Language of Crossing (2015, Swimming with Elephant Publications), which is a collection of poems about the Mexico- U.S. border. She loves breakfast food, popcorn and dark chocolate.

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