All posts in Happiness

Scientifically Backed Reasons You Should Move Near The Water…

As if you needed an excuse to move near the water, science now backs your decision incase any one asks…  There is just something about the water that is soothing and reduces the stress on the soul – but what exactly is it that creates this connection?

Wallace J. Nichols, a marine biologist, believes that we all have a “blue mind” — as he puts it, “a mildly meditative state characterized by calm, peacefulness, unity, and a sense of general happiness and satisfaction with life in the moment” — that’s triggered when we’re in or near water.

“We are beginning to learn that our brains are hardwired to react positively to water and that being near it can calm and connect us, increase innovation and insight, and even heal what’s broken,” Nichols writes in Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do, published in July. “We have a ‘blue mind’ — and it’s perfectly tailored to make us happy in all sorts of ways that go way beyond relaxing in the surf, listening to the murmur of a stream, or floating quietly in a pool.”

Water gives our brains a rest.

When we’re near, on, in or under water, we get a cognitive break because there’s simply less information coming in. Our brains don’t shut down — they keep working, but in a different way, according to Nichols. “When you have that simplified, quieter ‘blue’ space, your brain is better at a different set of processes,” he says.

Water can induce a meditative state.

When we’re by the water, our brains are held in a state of mild attentiveness — what Nichols calls a “soft fascination.” In this state, the brain is interested and engaged in the water, taking in sensory input but not distracted by an overload of it, as we might be with the “hard fascination” we experience while watching an action movie or playing a video game.

Water can inspire us to be more compassionate and connected.

While in the restful, contemplative state associated with observing or interacting with water, it’s also common to experience feelings of awe, Nichols’ research has found. The emotion of awe invokes feelings of a connection to something beyond oneself, a sense of the vastness of nature and an attempt to make sense of the experience.

A blue mind is a creative mind.

Rather than switching off, when you’re showering, your brain switches into a different mode — and while the brain is in a more restful state, suddenly you’re able to make those new or unusual connections. The “Eureka” moment comes at last — the insight or solution “feels like it drops out of the sky and into your head,” says Nichols.

Exercise by or in water is good for our bodies and brains.

“We know that water — being surrounded by blue space — helps us relax, and we know that exercise is good for our bodies and our brains,” says Nichols. “If somebody is experiencing a number of problems that exercise and stress reduction may help with, [water] is a good add-on. Find a river trail and run there, or get on a bike, or row or swim.”


 

Learn more from the Original Source:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2016/02/25/mental-benefits-water_n_5791024.html

8 Actions That Are Guaranteed To Boost Your Happiness

Life is all about the little things that brighten up the moment and boost happiness, and it is our job to recognize and be grateful for these small acts that make all the difference in life. Whether it is cooking your egg in the morning exactly how you like it, or beating your mile time on your afternoon run, below are 8 different actions to be mindful of that will boost your mood:

1) Finding a parking space in a crowded lot. Thank you, driving gods.

2) Finding money in your pocket. It’s like your own miniature version of winning the lottery.

3) Crawling into bed with fresh sheets. There’s just something about a well-made bed that instantly puts your mind at ease.

4) When you cut a mango or avocado perfectly around the pit. Sweet, sweet success.

5) The moment when you realize you’re incredibly content. A day with no complaints? That’s the good stuff. Happiness looks good on you.

6) Having a really good date with a loved one. It could be a significant other or just your best friend. Hanging with the special people in your life can reduce stress.

7) When your food comes at a restaurant. One word: mouthwatering.

8) When you recognize someone wearing your favorite team’s jersey or in another country. Hive fives all around.


 

Original Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/tiny-moments-happiness_us_56ec1a35e4b084c672200a36?utm_hp_ref=healthy-living

The Man Who Transformed The World’s Fiercest Athletes on Mindfulness

There is something much greater than the physical realm, the physical skill set we put to use each and everyday that portrays our talents… Some of the top performing athletes in the world have even found that something was missing that could potentially be the difference between great and legendary… Watch the video below to see how this man defined the passageway for many great athletes to become legendary:

5 Ways to Indulge in Some ‘Me-Time’…

In a world of constant connection and chaos, it’s very important to find time for yourself. Time to really look inward and take note of how you’re feeling, take note of your goals and where you are with them; dwell in self gratitude. Below are 5 ways you can indulge in alone time:

1) Create a journal of your own private thoughts. This is a way for some to get to know themselves better and find out more of who they are.

2) Give yourself the luxury of taking a nap once in a while during the day. You may sleep deeply or just rest musing. In each case, you will gain the respite from daily life that you hardly knew you needed. Stress can roll off of you and worries dissipate.

3) Choose an interest that requires concentration without interference from others. Perhaps you want to try something you’ve always yearned to do but everyday life has intervened.

4) Create “me-time.” This is time to do something that relaxes you and distracts you from worries and stressors.

5) Do nothing in particular. Just spend time with yourself in a comfortable spot that gives you a tranquil mind and settles your body so it is free from tension. Take as long as you need. You may find in only a short while the tension is released from your body.


 

Original Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laurie-hollman-phd/10-ways-to-spend-time-alone-for-healthy-living_b_9211046.html?utm_hp_ref=healthy-living

How To Overcome Procrastination Once and For All

Sometimes waiting till the last minute seems like the most appealing option until you realize how much you actually have to do, or it takes longer than you assumed and you miss your looming deadline… Learn to overcome procrastination and master your tasks with these three steps:

1. Recognize your emotions
Procrastination thrives when you react to your emotions, rather than facing and naming them. For instance, if you think of a work project and immediately curl up with a blanket over your head, it’s going to be that much harder to stand up and get to work.

2. Take small steps–and reward yourself for them
When you’re tackling procrastination, you’re likely changing a deeply rooted habit. Things that we’ve been doing for many years don’t happen overnight–it’s been proven that making lasting change takes both time and commitment. The best way to address procrastination: break it down. Choose one small piece of the work in front of you–and then reward yourself once it’s completed.

3. Write yourself a new script
Long-term changes begin to stick when you start to think differently. It’s likely that you have a set of thoughts that recur every time you procrastinate, making it even harder to take any action.


 

Original Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mequilibrium/3-ways-to-push-past-procrastination_b_9252678.html?utm_hp_ref=healthy-living

4 Actions To Help You Move On & Let Go

Each and every day brings new situations… some positive and unfortunately some negative. What determines the reputation of our character is how we handle these situations. We can either gracefully let go and move on from the negative experiences or dwell on them… Below are 4 actions to help you gracefully let go:

 

Writing.

This is actually not related to blogging or publishing at all. Often a difficult relationship is the last thing we should write about and then publish on — or, at least, we need to get some space so that we’re making sure it’s helpful and not just emotional vomit purged out into the world without purpose. Regardless, journaling and writing about an event we’re having trouble letting go of has definitely helped me figure out why exactly I’m so hurt and crippled — and then I’m more able to care for my emotions without that aforementioned wallowing.

Talk About it.

There’s a difference between talking a wound into the ground and dwelling on it–and treating our spouse like an unpaid therapist — and talking about a feeling in order to get in touch with it and then leave it in the past. (And, by all means, do see a licensed therapist if need be.)

Yoga.

I practiced yoga the other day after feeling hung up on a conversation. This combination of deep, steady, rhythmic breathing, with moving and stretching and yawning my body open — while also strengthening — reminds me that I’m supple and pliable. It’s reinvigorating to be reminded of how capable I am of bending, and how strong I am when I was initially feeling weak.

While I might not leave my yoga mat a perfectly different human being than I was when I hopped on, I am absolutely better equipped to deal with life, and to move forward one breath at a time.

Spending time with those I love.

And, at the end of the day, we deal with people in our lives outside of the people that we are able to choose, and who we enjoy spending time with. Taking one sincere look at my children, and smiling into their eyes, and holding them, and cuddling my husband, and laughing with him over a silly movie after the kids have gone to bed — these types of simple, positive experiences are always reminders of who and what matter in my life.

 


 

Original Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jennifer-s-white/how-to-let-go-gracefully_b_8995362.html?utm_hp_ref=gps-for-the-soul&ir=GPS+for+the+Soul

Put Down The Phone & Do This Before Bed Instead

Raise your hand if you plug in your phone and check your social media one last time before bed, or perhaps you check your emails one last time… Raise your hand if you sleep with your phone next to your bed? It’s safe to bet that at least half of you raised your hands for one of those questions, but seeing as our phone’s emit a light that is proven to keep our brains wired at night, our phones should not be invited to bed with us – Here are 5 things to do before bed time that don’t involve your smartphone:

Write in a journal.

Too anxious to drift off? Write it out instead of typing it out in a Facebook status. Research shows that jotting down worries and then physically throwing them away can help clear your mind of negative thoughts.

Take a warm bath or shower.

The ideal temperature for sleep is around 68 degrees Fahrenheit — and a warm bath is arguably the most relaxing way to get you there. When you take a steamy bath or shower, it brings up your body temperature and then it slowly cools once you get out, giving you the perfect prep for rest. Sleepiness: Activated.

Read a book.

We love a good binge, but not when it means sacrificing slumber. Luckily, there’s a way to get your fictional character fix without a tiny screen with Netflix: A captivating novel. Research shows reading can help improve sleep. Don’t mind if we do.

Meditate.

Breathe in, breathe out, find sleep. Studies suggest meditation can help people relax and get a better night’s rest. Not only that, it has amazing health benefits.Even just a few minutes will do the trick.

Conjure up a relaxing scene.

Who needs to imagine sheep when you can picture yourself stretched out on a beach instead? Research shows the longstanding sleep tradition of counting those animals actually engages the brain rather than preps it for rest. Calming images are a way better way to chill out your mind.


 

Read more from the original source here:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/bedtime-activities_us_56c3438ee4b0c3c550529b0d?utm_hp_ref=healthy-living

Top Career Tips From Women on Top

It’s a dog eat dog world out there for us women in the corporate world or even as entrepreneurs! If you are striving to climb to the top at your company or start your own company from scratch, these women who are all top CEO’s and Founders have some important advice for us girls trying to run the world!

NEGOTIATE. NEGOTIATE. NEGOTIATE

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“Don’t be afraid to negotiate—whether it’s negotiating work hours, pay, your title, or the exact responsibilities. I’ve noticed that women have a harder time negotiating when they get a job offer, compared to men, and I would highly recommend negotiating to get what you want. At the very worst, you get a ‘No,’ but you at least tried!”—Aarthi Ramamurthy, Founder and CEO of Lumoid

ASK THIS ONE QUESTION

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“When you’re trying to decide whether a job or career is right for you, ask yourself ‘would I want my boss’s job?’ If the answer is no, take a hard look at the path you’re on.”—Tal Winter and Kate Cutler, Founders ofbkr

SET YOUR ‘BHAG’

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“Your life is a balancing act, so it’s important to first figure out what’s most important to you, and then make sure to devote time to it. I encourage everyone to set a Big, Hairy, Audacious Goal (BHAG for short) and take baby steps to accomplish it. I certainly don’t wake up every morning and think about how I’m going to revolutionize everyday work—that’s just too lofty—but I do identify small, actionable steps that can be accomplished every day. I know that by making progress against those smaller, more attainable goals, TaskRabbit will reach our BHAG.”—Leah Busque, Founder and CEO of TaskRabbit

REFUSE TO FEEL GUILTY

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“As a new CEO and a new mom, there is a lot to feel guilty about. Am I giving enough to my son? My husband? Or my job at DoSomething.org? So I’ve decided to banish guilt. It’s completely counter-productive. Be present with however you decide to spend your time and that will always be the best answer.”—Aria Finger, CEO ofDoSomething.org


 

Original Source:

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/life/10-best-career-tips

How She Kicked Her Smartphone Addiction & Found The Light

 

As you may know, our world is now ruled by these tiny, skinny screens that dictate our every second.  Not only do they rule our day but they also interrupt and corrupt. They interrupt important connection time between friends and they have been known to corrupt important relationships with your significant other.  Read below about a girl,  , who has been without a cell phone for over 18 months now and the effects she has felt:

I take my laptop, Google the address, add better directions to my notes and head outside to my 1989 pick-up truck (whose most recent technological feature is a cassette player) and drive over. If I get lost on the way, I’ll need to ask someone for directions. If she changes her plans, she won’t be able to tell me or cancel at a moment’s notice. If I crash on the way, I won’t be calling 911.

I didn’t just cancel cellular service and keep the smartphone for Wi-Fi fun, nor did I downgrade to a flip phone to “simplify”; I opted out entirely. There is no mobile phone in my life, in any form, at all.

“My phone” has become “the phone”. It’s no longer my personal assistant; it has reverted back to being a piece of furniture – like “the fridge” or “the couch”, two other items you also wouldn’t carry around on your butt.

I didn’t get rid of it for some hipster-inspired luddite ideal or because I couldn’t afford it. I cut myself off because my life is better without a cellphone. I’m less distracted and less accessible, two things I didn’t realize were far more important than instantly knowing how many movies Kevin Kline’s been in since 2010 at a moment’s notice. I can’t be bothered unless I choose to be. It makes a woman feel rich.

I even slept with my phone by my side. It was what I fell asleep watching, and it was the alarm that woke me up. It was never turned off. I’m certain I texted while driving, in dark movie theaters, and out with friends around restaurant tables. It got so bad that I grew uncomfortable with any 30-second span of hands-free idleness. I felt obligated to reply to every Facebook comment, text, tweet and game request.

I got a landline and I got more sleep. I look people in the eye. I eat food instead of photographing it and am not driving half a ton of metal into oncoming traffic while looking down at a tiny screen. My business, social life, and personal safety have not evaporated overnight either. Turns out a basic internet connection and laptop is plenty of connectivity to keep friends informed, weekends fun and trains running on time. And while I might be missing out on being able to call 911 at any moment, it’s worth the sacrifice to me. Alcoholics can clean wounds with 100 proof vodka, but that doesn’t mean they should have it in their back pocket just in case.

 


 

Read more from the original source here:

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/feb/11/smartphone-technology-addiction-facebook-twitter?utm_source=pocket&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=pockethits

Overcome Your Depression With This Exercise

Exercising releases endorphins, endorphins make you happy and happiness overcomes sadness! But there is definitely more to the equation when it comes to overcoming depression. Luckily, in a recent study, a fun exercise that incorporates a social scene has been linked to fighting the blues:

Bouldering provides a physical challenge for your body.

Bouldering gets you moving in an organic way and offers a full-body workout. For those who don’t like traditional exercise such as timed increments on a treadmill, bouldering is great because it’s reminiscent of playing on a playground. You simply have to climb from point A to B, and anyone can start attempting the easiest routes.

Bouldering stimulates the mind.

What sets bouldering apart from other sports is the mental aspect — it requires a significant amount of focus, concentration, and coordination. It’s been described to me countless times by many different people as a “moving meditation,” because when you’re climbing a wall, you can’t really focus on much else. It gives people a fun avenue to really tune into themselves and to be present.

Bouldering fosters a strong sense of community.

The most unique aspect of bouldering is the social aspect. While you’re on your own in the movement, you are constantly surrounded by others who are encouraging you to reach your goal. Bouldering fosters a strong sense of community and is similar to group therapy in that participants are encouraged to cheer each other on and help to solve problems on the wall.

Positive social interaction is invaluable, and due to the inherent nature of bouldering, it provides plenty. Bouldering simultaneously allows you to break barriers physically and mentally, which can really transform how a person views themselves. It opens up a world of possibility, so the next time you’re feeling a little blue, give bouldering a shot.

 


 

Original Source:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-23631/this-form-of-exercise-might-help-you-beat-depression.html