Hello Sunshine: 5 Simple Rules for Living Happy

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Are you feeling drop-dead exhausted? Easily annoyed? Are you eating like crazy? Sounds a lot like a certain-time-of-the-month, but if this sort of thing is more common then your monthly friend, you could be battling the blues.

The ugly truth is that the United States has become a drug-dependent nation. Pharmaceutical companies and hospitals work together to convince you that you need drugs to balance you out, rather then actually pin-pointing the problem and helping you. Research from just last year shows that approximately 18.8% people have “mental disorders” such as depression, and the percentage keeps climbing up. And “victims’ on anti-depressant often continue having to fight being depressed.

Because a chemical isn’t going to make you any happier then material things. Just like you would own a lot of stuff and still feel nothing inside, you would have chemicals pumping through veins and only have a false sense of true happiness. Life is too short to live under an illusion of any kind.

1. Free your heart from hatred

I strongly believe that no one, absolutely no one, has any excuse to hate anyone, and keep hatred in their heart.

In college, a woman by the name of Jennifer Thompson had been raped at knifepoint by a man who had broken into her off-campus apartment as she slept. Unable to escape, she made it a point to remember what he looked like, so she could give the police a description and this man could harm no one ever again. Later in the investigation in a photography line-up, she identified a man who worked nearby as her attacker. And chose him again in a suspect line-up.

Throughout the trial, and even during his time in prison, Ronald insisted that he was innocent and that Jennifer was mistaken. After eleven years- as DNA tests were becoming more popular in investigations-Ronald was allowed to take a DNA test and prove his innocence and that the attacker was a man he had actually met while in prison, by the name of Bobby Brown ( who had even confessed to raping Jennifer while he was in prison). Two years later, Jennifer and Ronald met face to face. This man came face to face with the woman who had taken eleven years of his life, if anyone has any rational reason to hate someone, it was him. But he looked right her and told her ” I forgive you.”

This man , without a moment’s hesitation, told this woman that he forgave her when she asked to meet him face to face, when he had good reason not to, after being wrongly stripped away from his family and life…This is a story with a lesson we can all apply to our own lives.

It takes up so much of our energy to hate someone, and has hating someone ever, once, led to a solution to a problem? Has it made you feel any better?

2. Free your mind from worries

This is most common on Sundays, which is why they (whoever they are) so cleverly named it ‘ The Sunday Blues’. You know the feeling, when Sunday rolls around and you’re thinking about the week ahead of you. Work and school. Deadlines and tests. Meetings. Whatever your shpeel is. All that’s running through your head is a week’s worth of to-do lists. And guess what, it entirely ruins your Sunday? Even if you take a break from gearing up for the week that’s waiting, you’re mind is still occupied with worry.

But worries don’t have a calendar. This isn’t to indicate that you only feel worried on Sundays. I understand stressing for weeks over midterms. Debt. Relationships. Life in general. It’s absolutely draining, isn’t it? You might not be entirely happy with you situation and whole-heartedly crave a change of scenery. You might feel stuck in a rut. So for days when you’re feeling particularly anxious, I recommend the following:

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Do something fun. Put on your favorite music and dance, indulge in something yummy and don’t think even once about the calories. Whatever tickles you pink, make it a point to do.

Remove ass from computer chair. I’m dead serious. Go for a walk around the office, or to the park. Take a bubble bath, cook something tasty, go window shopping. Something away from you computer, leave your cell phone at home, turn off the tv, and if you’re the kind of person that absolutely HAS to check their email or facebook every hour, you better leave that itouch with your cell phone. Take a break from anything with a screen, basically, and renew your spirit.

Live ideally. There’s a popular quote floating around the interwebs, that being happy all the time doesn’t make you human, it makes you a game show host. Ridiculously true, but if you find yourself consistently unhappy, you might actually need to pursue a change of scenery. This doesn’t mean flip your life upside down tomorrow (such a change can actually make you even more upset), but start planning and turn the leaf over gradually. Write down your goals and dreams and take it one step at a time to see them come true.

3. Live simply.

Clear your clutter and the complexity. Differentiate between your needs and you wants. Do you really need the ten million inch super HD tv that comes with built in blue ray and surround sound and even a built in espresso machine? Or do you just need something to keep you stimulated when you get home? It’s the difference between watching tv and reading book. Going on some extravagant outing with your friends or getting together for a nice chat? Building relationships with other people and making memories of those crazy nights. Which will leave you more satisfied at the end of the day?

There are plenty of natural ways and just simple things you can do to beat the blues without popping open a single lid of Prozac. It’s all about breaking the illusion and truly, honestly being happy.

9 Comments on Hello Sunshine: 5 Simple Rules for Living Happy

  1. Miriam
    10/20/2010 at 3:38 am (4 years ago)

    This is a great article. However, I think a distinction needs to be made between “the blues” and major depression. Nobody would seriously recommend prescribing antidepressants for someone who’s just been feeling a bit down and tired. Depression isn’t feeling down. It’s feeling hopeless, worthless, guilty, and fatigued. It means hating yourself and wishing you didn’t have to live anymore. How do I know? Because I’ve been there.

    When I finally decided to try antidepressants, I found that they weren’t a panacea. I still get sad sometimes. I have periods of time when trying some of the things this post suggests would truly help. However, telling someone who wants to kill herself to “do something fun” and “remove ass from computer chair” isn’t going to help. In fact, it will be counterproductive. Antidepressants have their place, and the kinds of people who need them aren’t the people who will be able to derive any benefit from this advice.

    Reply
    • Amber Renée
      10/20/2010 at 11:49 am (4 years ago)

      I love that you said that Miriam. I’ve had major depression and anxiety my entire life and I’ve had my fair share of impossible-to-follow advice. Take a look around at some of our depression articles for finding solutions for more serious hurting. It must be said that our brain chemicals are sometimes imbalanced and need a little medical pick-me-up for a while or forever.

      Stay wonderful. xoxox

      Reply
  2. ashley
    10/22/2010 at 4:36 am (4 years ago)

    Love this, shared it on FB. :twisted:

    Reply
  3. Merry
    11/06/2010 at 1:50 pm (4 years ago)

    These are good ideas for people who only get ‘the blues’ and don’t really have real depression. I have depression and I was a bit insulted at the end when you spoke of taking medications. It is a chemical imbalance in the brain, and no amount of getting out my chair or trying to do ‘happy things’ will make it stop, I’m afraid to say. I wish it was that easy. So, taking my Paxil everyday is keeping me in a level state and to where I don’t want to die all the time. Sorry, but I think you need to edit this post a bit.

    Reply
  4. Amber Renée
    11/06/2010 at 2:04 pm (4 years ago)

    Again, I’m not Ashli but I’m sure she meant this post for people who get the blues rather than serious cases of actual depression. Once upon a time Paxil changed my life, actually! ;)

    Reply
  5. Ashli
    11/07/2010 at 2:49 am (4 years ago)

    Well, I am Ashli.

    First, I would like to apoligize for my absence and delay of a reply.
    Foremost, I would like to say that yes, this article was written for people who get ” the blues”, and is in no way talking about anyone with severe, legitimate depression. Because, indeed, it is a chemical imbalance.
    And it was also about people who suffer from “depression”, not depression, but “depression”, the difference being that, at least in the experiences I’ve had and those of the people I know, either many doctors will simply tell you that you have depression when you don’t and perscribe you medication to make money, or someone will be convinced they’re suffering and never actually get the ordeal checked out.
    And I’m terribly sorry that none of this had crossed my mind when I wrote it, I would have definitely made better word choices and tried to articulate the thought process more thoroughly.

    Reply
  6. Amber Renée
    11/07/2010 at 3:08 pm (4 years ago)

    Ashli, this is a great and inspiring article to many. I’ve been getting tons of raves about it, so don’t worry! I hope you keep up your positive and enlightening articles. ;)

    Reply

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