Families are strengthened when individuals are happy. Most of us can be happier and enjoy life to a much fuller extent that we currently do. With few exceptions, we can determine our own happiness when we take responsibility for making ourselves happy. We each are responsible to control our own thoughts, words, and actions, and we can determine whether they are happy and positive or sad and negative. It is generally up to the individual to make the decision and take the actions.
I recently saw a list published by Alaskan Physicians and Surgeons containing “25 awesome tips for a beautiful life.” Since the name of the author contains the word Alaska, I assume the author knows about life in Alaska with all its problems caused by cold and darkness. I found the suggested tips very interesting and believe that anyone could be happier by following them; therefore, I am sharing them with my readers with a few additional comments.
1) “Take a 10-30 minute walk every day – and smile while you walk. It is the ultimate antidepressant.” Simply being outside – even in cold weather – gives us an opportunity to see our beautiful world and recognize the work of God in our lives. The simple act of smiling brings positive feelings to me.
2) “Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.” Silence gives us an opportunity to think and ponder; it also gives God an opportunity to influence our thoughts and inspire us.
3) “When you wake up in the morning, Pray to ask God’s guidance for your purpose, today.” Morning prayer is like putting on battle armor. If we do not take the time to pray, it is as though we are facing the world unprotected from our enemies.
4) “Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.” Fruits, grains, and vegetables are the most healthy food we can eat; the fresher they are, the better they are for us generally.
5) “Drink … plenty of water.” Water is a necessary ingredient for our bodies; dehydration leads to many problems. “Eat blueberries, broccoli, and almonds.” Good nutrition is important for good health. In addition to blueberries, broccoli, and almonds, other suggested foods for longer and healthier lives include apples, bananas, beans, beets, spinach, sweet potatoes, and wheat germ.
6) “Try to make at least three people smile each day.” Reaching out to other people in an effort to help them and make them happy will in turn add to our own happiness. Giving service to other people reminds us that we have many blessings to count.
7) “Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.” Negative people and thoughts drain our energy and drag us down. Thinking, speaking and acting positively brings happiness to others and to us.
8) “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.” In other words, breakfast should be our largest meal of the day and dinner should be our smallest meal. We need more food in the morning to fuel our bodies for the day; we need less food in our stomachs when our bodies are resting.
9) “Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.” Amen!
10) “Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Forgive everybody and free yourself from carrying the heavy load of trying to get even with them. Forgiving others and ourselves frees us to be happy.
11) “Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.” This is so true!
12) “You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.” This is important to happiness.
13) “Make peace with your past so it won’t spoil the present.” We cannot change what happened in the past and simply have to accept it. We can determine our present and our future; we must concentrate on the here and now as well as prepare for our future. In this way, we can do all we can to make sure that we have no regrets in the future.
14) “Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.” Comparisons are not good because we see others at their “best” and ourselves at our “worst.” We cannot judge others because we do not walk in their shoes.
15) “No one is in charge of your happiness except you.” This is so true!
16) “Frame every so-called disaster with these words: `In five years, will this matter?’” This is an excellent suggestion; it will relieve a lot of tension if we can remember it.
17) “Help the needy. Be generous! Be a `Giver’ not a `Taker’.” We all have something to give, even if it is only a smile and a kind word.
18) “What other people think of you is none of your business.” True!
19) “Time heals everything.” Time is a marvelous healer. Time heals our bodies and our minds; it can also heal relationships.
20) “However good or bad a situation is, it will change.” The only things certain about life are taxes, death, and change.
21) “Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Our friends [and/or family] will. Stay in touch.” Enough said.
22) “Envy is a waste of time. You already have all your need.” An attitude of gratitude brings good feelings and happiness.
23) “Each night before you go to bed, Pray to God and Be thankful for what you’ll accomplish, today!” An evening prayer is an excellent time to report to God about what happened during the day as well as to express gratitude and to plan for tomorrow.
24) “Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.” Life itself is a great blessing; additional great blessings include family, friends, purpose for life, good health, freedom, fresh air, fresh water, sufficient food, and shelter. Anyone who has these basics is truly blessed!
25) “Share this to everyone on your list to help them lead a happier life!!!”
These are “awesome tips for a beautiful life!” I hope you will consider instituting at least some of the ideas into your life and make yourself a little – or a lot - happier. We all deserve happiness because we are children of a loving Heavenly Father who desires happiness and joy for all His children. Happy individuals strengthen their families, communities, and nations because they share light and joy with others.