And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. ~Marianne Williamson
Thanks to Vidya Sury and to Elle for reminding me of quick and easy joy habits we can incorporate into our daily lives without any fuss and bother. These habits will not add any burden to your busy schedule. You don’t have to practice them to get good at them – we all start out as experts!
Here are theirs, with a couple of my own thrown in.
1. Compliment someone. Someone once leaned over to me in a meeting and told me that I have a beautiful smile. It made my day. Heck, it made my week. And guess what – now I smile a LOT!
2. Smile at someone. See the smooth segue from the last one? The physical act of smiling sends messages to our brains that we are happy. And smiling is contagious.
3. Belly breathe. Just as smiling tells our brains that we are happy, belly breathing (breathing deeply into your abdomen) tells our brains that we are safe. It interrupts the chronic stress cycle that shallow chest breathing creates, and helps us relax and be present.
4. Thank someone. Thanking anyone is great. Thanking someone we often overlook is even greater. Thank someone in your family. Thank a person who serves you or helps you in some way – a cashier, a first responder, a receptionist, a sanitation worker, a restaurant server, a courtesy clerk. So many opportunities throughout the day to express our appreciation.
5. Encourage someone. Let someone know with a few words that you believe in them, support them, are proud of them. Many of us remember decades later a teacher or a neighbor or an older relative who said something encouraging to us when were young. A few words can have lasting impact on someone of any age.
Like I said, easy and quick.
And for your entertainment, enjoy this video that someone sent me awhile back. I can’t remember who it was now, but if it was you, please let me know in a comment. And no matter who it was, thank you!
related posts: Breathing Like a Baby; Make Someone’s Day
This is a great list! And you're right--we already know how to do these things. So it shouldn't be so hard to put them into regular practice. Thanks for sharing!ReplyDelete
Tina, My pleasure. Enjoy! Thanks for your comment.Delete
I didn't know that belly breathing tells your brain you're safe. That's a good reason to do it!ReplyDelete
Linda, Studies show that when we are in fight or flight fear mode, our breathing tends to be shallow and rapid. Breathing like this tells our brains that we are in danger, even if we aren't. Since many of us breathe like this normally, we are putting our brains in a chronic stress loop.Delete
Babies naturally breathe into their bellies, as do animals at rest. This tells our brains that we are safe and creates a feeling of well being and relaxation. So even if we are stressed, we can belly breathe and calm our bodies down.
It's a great technique. I taught my daughter to belly breathe when she was learning how to drive. I practiced it a lot then, too!
Thanks for commenting.
This is really cool Galen! I know it feels good to take deep breaths but I didn't know this either!Delete
Lori, I know--very cool!Delete
These are just so simple aren't they, yet they magnify joy tremendously. I especially like smiling as it's so lovely to see how it catches other people unawares but they almost always quickly smile in return. So nice!ReplyDelete
Sandra, Smiling at you right now! Thanks for your comment.Delete
Big hugs to you Galen! I am always overwhelmed at the love I receive when I practice gratitude, complimenting and saying an encouraging word. Strangers I've spoken to, and have met again have often thanked me for being nice - and it always makes me cry.ReplyDelete
Life is so simple...when we notice. :-)
I am grateful to you for the fabulous start to my morning every single day!
Vidya, A little kindness can have big effects. And you are right--it's so simple. I'm glad to be part of your morning. Thanks for your comment.Delete
I think you found Validation over at my site a few weeks ago in a post I had called, "Are You A Validator?" (http://www.zen-mama.com/2013/07/are-you-a-validator/) It's one of my favorite short films!! Love your tips and I try to do many of them every day. Our Yoga teacher taught us to belly breathe but I never heard the part about feeling safe but hat makes total sense. Love it!
Betsy, I must have seen that post and then couldn't remember. Also, someone sent me the link to that video by email several months ago. So now I've run across it twice. So glad you reminded me of your wonderful post. For more info on belly breathing, see my response to Linda above, or click on the link to the related post about breathing like a baby. Fascinating! Thanks for your comment.Delete
I love to compliment and encourage people. I appreciate the smile they always get on their faces :)) xx
Inner Chick, A compliment is never wasted. It benefits the giver and the receiver. Thanks for your comment.Delete
Thank you Galen for including me in your joyful habits. I seek the joy in each day, and here you handed it to me on a platter. :-)ReplyDelete
Elle, Thanks for the inspiration. I know that you are not only a joy seeker, you are a joy finder. Every day. Thanks for your comment.Delete
You are AWESOME - I love the validation video! First though we must validate ourselves. To point out the beautiful in someone is to point out the beautiful in YOU!ReplyDelete
Thank you BeYOUtiful!!!!!
Love and light!
Nancy, Very true. Love and light back to you and thanks for commenting.Delete
These are great pieces of advice, Galen. I especially love the belly breathe. It really does help a lot!ReplyDelete
Happy weekend! Take care and God bless! :-)
Irene, I think of belly breathing as a starter habit for the 10 Steps. It makes everything else easier. Hope you have a good weekend, too. Thanks for commenting.Delete
I love that these are focused on service to others! The last comment I just made on a post about inner peace, I added service! And then I opened your blog and read these! Awesome when that happens! xoReplyDelete
Jodi, I had not made that connection to service. Thanks for pointing that out. And thanks for commenting.Delete
I've started this practice of thanking people more now, Galen, thanks to keeping up with your writings. It is so easy to do, can make people's day, and allows the currency of gratitude to keep flowing :)ReplyDelete
And encouraging too is a great practice - a small encouraging note can help someone achieve their dream, reach their potential etc.
Small practices with big results!
Vishnu, I agree that these practice require very little effort and reap big rewards. Thanks for your comment.Delete