My Happiness Project: Stage 3

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This year, I made a resolution to go on a Happiness Project – a journey to explore if happiness itself can be pursued. My plan is to introduce 3 new tactics every quarter of 2015, and I invite you to join me!

I’m excited to announce the three new happiness tactics are as follows:

  • Disconnect one night a week – Over the past year, it has become more and more apparent to me how fast and furious I live my life at times. The days whiz by without much notice. I can loose myself in the endless forms of contact, and expectations of timely responses on multiple mediums. I’m exhausted! This quarter, I plan to schedule one night a week to disconnect, to put my phone on plane mode, and not step close to a computer. I plan, instead, to curl up with a good book, go for a walk in nature, meditate, scratch my dog, write. I plan to schedule (yes, in my calendar) a reoccurring mini-vacation, a time to unwind and refocus.
  • Make time for something you love (bi-weekly) – For me, this is art – painting, photography, music, poetry.  Something that gets your mind to soar, that awakens dreams, that you feel nothing but bliss when you do. Maybe for you it’s getting massages, baking bread early in the morning, or fixing up old cars – whatever it is that you really love, make time for it. If you live by your calendar, like I do, with almost every hour scheduled – schedule a reoccurring meeting in advance so you don’t get double booked. It’s ok to prioritize your own health and happiness.
  • Get at least 8 hours of sleep – Yes, yes, yes. We all know we should be getting enough shut-eye. It’s all well and good to say you’ll do it – but when life plays out it can be a completely different story. So how do we make changes to increase our likelihood of actually sleeping? I plan to try a few tactics: start getting ready for bed an hour before you need to (put away electronics, clean up, slow down), remove ‘noise’ from your sleeping area (light, clutter, etc), and finally track it (from marking it on a calendar to using a sleep tracking app – being accountable is important).

Over the past 6 months we have focused on: identifying 5 things we are grateful for, meditating, removing one negative thing from our lives, investing in 5 meaningful relationships, exercising daily, and creating a happy music playlist.

For me, meditation (Headspace) and a daily gratitude practice have stood out as the most impactful tactics to date. Both have made me increasingly aware of the power of the mind, and our ability to change the way we perceive the world with dedicated work on rewriting our internal narratives. I would highly suggest you check out one or both of these tactics.

 

For those of you who have implemented happiness initiatives – what have been some of your experiences? Be sure to share them below! What did you find most fulfilling about investing in meaningful relationships? How did you include exercise in your schedule? Join the Happiness Project with me!


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30 thoughts on “My Happiness Project: Stage 3

  1. This is what I need: disconnect, make time and sleep. I never believed that it would be so difficult to achieve! I usualy turn to nature and yoga 🙂 I often take hikes and the trees always make me happy :)) Oh, and boxing! As a yoga lover, I never thought this would work, but it’s like moving meditation. Hugs!

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  2. Exercise for me is key!! A little bit of walking, the odd job and lots of movement at work all day keeps me in a much better frame of mind. And when I get myself in a tizz, doing a favour for someone else always makes me feel more composed, capable and at peace. Loving this blog – happiness is the only cause worth achieving!!

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  3. I love this, L. A few years ago, during a not-so-great time of my life, I decided to write down three things that had happened each day that I could be grateful for. It wasn’t enough for me to be grateful for concepts or things (“food,” “freedom,” “a job.”). Instead, I tried to be grateful for *moments* that had occurred that day — a revelation I’d had while on a walk, a life-giving conversation with a friend, or a challenge that stretched me. Keeping a journal of these 3 daily moments felt like fakery at first, but in time it really did begin to draw my attention to how many amazing moments were happening all around me all the time. And that made me happy.

    Good luck with your continued project!! 🙂

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    1. Beautiful. Your words really resonated with me – I too felt like a small bit insincere at the start of the gratitude journal, but I noticed I began looking for things to be grateful for all the time. It’s true when they say ‘you find what you seek’. I love an app called ‘Gratitude journal’ – easy to use, and great to scroll back through things you were previously thankful for. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Hi Laura, I like your next 3 tactics! I will certainly tackle the first 2 and I think I might be successful! The last one is always tough when the alarm clock crashes into your dreams at 6 am but I know myself that I perform better with 8 hours sleep. I guess I’ll start with it as an aspiration! 🙂

    It seems like a long time since I’ve disconnected for a night and the level of “connectedness” has increased since I started blogging. I Like the idea so I am going to nail it!

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