Everyone says it, but many people seem to not achieve it. So I’ve been thinking, and plundering my little happiness book, and here are ten things you can do to have a happier Christmas – I hope they work for you!
1. Reduce stress during the lead-up by having one jobs to do list of everything.
2. Focus on the good things rather than the annoying, both in the future (look forward rather than dread), the present (find things to savour, focus on the tiny pleasures of each day, find a way to enjoy even the chores), and the past (after each day think of three good things to give thanks for. Let the bad things go, they are in the past).
3. Make the most of your relatives – the kids are what make Christmas magical and the old ones may not be around many more years, so make the most of the time you have, maybe ask them about their lives, maybe they have incredible stories to tell
4. Get outside in the fresh air, even if it’s snowing. As the Norwegians say, there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing!
5. Get some exercise – it releases stress, makes you sleep better, and gives you a feeling of achievement.
6. Make someone else happy – is there a lonely person in your street, or someone you can help with something? You’ll reap what you sow, one way or another.
7. Do one or two unpleasant things that you have been putting off. Use some of the time to do something like clear out the shed, so you get a feeling of achievement rather than a feeling of having wasted the time.
8. De-clutter: can you throw away more stuff than you are going to receive for Christmas? This would give you a feeling of achievement and avoid that feeling of one’s house gradually filling up…
9. Make a list of things that you like doing but haven’t had time to do during the year but will do during the break, and maybe even schedule them into your diary. For example, I’m going to restart meditation for 20 minutes a day, investigate and learn about Goldmine, finish off my job to do iPhone app, (it’s nearly ready!), work on my perpetual calendar idea (yes, that IS my idea of fun!), maybe try Tai-Chi, and write/record some songs on my 8-track Tascam. Your list may well be different!
10. Take stock – rather than think of a couple of short term resolutions for the new year like “Watch less TV” have a proper think about what was good in 2010 that you’d like to continue or do more of, what was less good that you want to change in 2011, and what new things would you like to start doing.
So – have a good one!
onwards and upwards