5 Easy Steps to Becoming a Happier You Now! For starters…

There are times, and I speak for myself too, when we feel extremely low without being able to point out the reason behind. This low feeling may be due to negative emotions we have been boiling up, feelings we have been dismissing for quite a long time, or a specific denial that we do not want to face right now.

Whatever the reason, this ‘bad’ sensation is being experienced now and we may either feel like a ‘couch potato’ or a ‘caged lion’. For me, the latter usually expresses it well! The risk is to sink further down and actually feel quite comfortable in this low emotion, make it harder to bounce back.

We all have felt that way at some point in our life and it will most probably happen again. Are we then condemned to this vicious cycle? No, of course. We are never condemned, we always have a choice whether positive or negative. So let’s try to opt for a positive option, and hopefully a positive outcome, that could be summed up in 5 points, to begin with…

1.Go through the pain

Yes, it may sound quite paradoxical, especially after having specified the risk of dreariness, but a necessary step. It is quite difficult to get better without acknowledging the sorrow or pain you are experiencing. It is fundamental to go through it, even for a few days. Otherwise, it will get back at you, in retaliation for having denied it, later on. Denial is one of the worst defense mechanisms and it won’t do you any good, that’s for sure. So believe me, go through the sadness/pain/sorrow first!

2.Do not feel guilty

It is quite common to feel guilty for having listened to your melancholy. Society forces us to control our feelings, to move on, to carry out actions, to deny any temporary negativity we may feel. However, we all feel negative or low at some point and there is clearly nothing wrong about that. If you procrastinate for a short period of time to recentre, to reflect, to ponder, to dig into yourself ‘with care’, you’ll then be able to make the right decisions and face the world again. So instead of feeling guilty, rejoice because you can be proud of yourself for sailing against the wind and knowing yourself better.

3.Accept the situation

That is probably the hardest part. Acceptance is a difficult stage especially if we talk about a situation you feel stuck in. Again, as paradoxical as this may sound, accept the feeling, and then think of other options you may have. There are probably other routes you haven’t pondered yet. To be able to see those ‘other’ options, you need to accept your mixed emotions — otherwise, you may feel drained quite fast as a result of accumulated stress instead of focusing on other possibilities.

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4.Make a plan

Having accepted the situation and thought of other itineraries, you are now ready to make a plan. Good, but what kind of plan? Well, you could jot down the areas of your life that you want to address or change. If the sadness was caused by a specific situation, find the reason behind — what comes from you, what comes from the situation itself. Accept your own responsibilities and think of ways you could improve some aspects of yourself. List the values that mean a lot to you and stick to them. Project yourself in a few months’ time — where do you see yourself emotionally, physically, geographically, etc? Be honest with yourself and make a plan in line with your own values.

5.Move forward and accept any changes

You can now break down the path from ‘here’ — where you are now — to ‘there’ — where you’d like to be — into small manageable steps. Remember, if the steps are too unrealistic or too ambitious, you could go back to square one. So don’t be too tough on yourself and respect your own pace. Besides, progress in life is not linear; you may suffer from unexpected setbacks despite a well-thought-out plan… And this is totally fine. Accept any potential adjustments you may need to make at times. They may happen for a reason, try to decipher it, and make the necessary changes.

And now it’s up to you! You are the captain of your ship, steer it in the right direction and remember that the journey may not be linear. And that is how we learn and get better!

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