Five Ways To Start Having More Fun

pineapple whip

Lately I feel like the only time I genuinely have fun is when I’m playing with Colette. Not only am I challenged at living in the moment but I don’t know how to have fun at home. I’m sure others do it, too.. I get into this state where if I’m doing something “fun” and not working I feel I need to be working.

I can’t just relax and let go.
I always feel there are things to be done.. as there are.
What an anxious twit I must sound like!

So now I’m on a mission to have more fun at all times.

1. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Let go of all of your hangups, You’re not too cool to have fun, you can always find fun to be had.

2. Take up new activities that you’re interested in. Always wanted to learn to knit? To sew? To surf? There’s no time like the present to master any skill you’re intrigued by.

3. Writing time. Grab your journal or a piece of paper and list at least 30 things you like, or would like, to do. If you feel like it, add 30 more. Check this list when you’re feeling bored, uninspired or just stuck!

4. Laugh more. Allow yourself to laugh more at everything, it will make you feel better instantly.

5. Take time out for fun. Schedule time out from work and the daily grind to do something you’d like to do. Give everyone a rain check and take it all in. This is your time, have fun doing what you want. You deserve it!

The Eight Principles of Fun (this is cute)

Why Can’t Everyday Be Like My Birthday?

jamber tea party

We’re often told to do what we want to do on our birthday. We’re able to enjoy sweets without guilt and to celebrate with friends and family. It’s a relaxing day and I want to take time out though today to enjoy every single thing with my family. I want to remember this day.

Why can’t I do that everyday? Why can’t I just take time out to do what I want and enjoy every moment? That’s my new goal this week, for everyday to feel like a special day. To take time out during the day to do things that I want and to make sure to enjoy them.

1. Eat and really enjoy sweets and coffee.
2. Sit outside on the balcony all snuggled in a fluffy blanket and have cocoa toped in marshmallows.
3. Paint colorful deericorns on tiny canvases.
4. Have tea and dessert at a local coffee shop.
5. Read in the bathtub.
6. Have champagne with friends.
7. Dip strawberries in chocolate.
8. Make and decorate cupcakes.
9. Have a tea party.
10. Have a movie marathon.

Write down a list of things you enjoy doing. Write down things that cheer you up even when you’re feeling blue. This is a great list to refer to when you’re feeling bored, unmotivated or a little overworked. You’ll be surprised how much better just doing a few things on your list will make you feel.

Soon I’m going to create little printable journal pages for you to use when reading these posts — I’m hoping it will encourage you to take part in the lessons that have helped me when in need. What sorts of journal pages would you prefer?

Learning to Live in the Moment

This cherry frosting is the best~ Oh hai. Here's looking at you, kitten.

I like to pinpoint areas in my life I’d like to change and then work on them..
If you can retrain your brain you can begin to let go of those issues.
I feel that I have never been able to live in the moment.
I’m always thinking about the past or waiting for the future.. never living in the here and now.
My new goal is to change this.
Want to come along for the ride?

In order to live a happier and healthier life, we need to slow down and learn to live in the moment.

We’re often so worried about our health, what we’re eating, doing, wearing, seeing that we sometimes forget how to enjoy living right now. Today. I seem to always be focused on my schedule and what I need to do next that I don’t enjoy the moment. This is one of the reasons I have started therapy, I want to live in the moment. I don’t want to be concerned with the past.

Just because we’re learning to live in the moment does not mean that we ignore tomorrow. Still concern yourself with tomorrow but involve yourself more in today. Tomorrow will come. Yesterday has gone. There is nothing you can change about the past, let go of your sadness or regret.

Living in the moment is easy when you’re having an exciting time.
Think back to vivid memories you have about fun times in the past.
You had no problem living in the moment then, why can’t everyday be that sunny vacation?
Why can’t every cup of coffee fill your mouth with a warming aroma of energy that warms you to the bone?
For some periods of time you are living in the moment.
Now how can we do this all the time?

One mistake that I and many others make is focusing too much on the future.
Weighing your happiness over something taking place, a raise, a lover or a bigger apartment.
Every time we achieve the “if only” we find we need something else to maintain this false facade of happiness.

Living in the moment means seeing the blessings you have today.
This is another one of those “take gratitude” tips from me.
Realize what you DO have and be thankful.
Try to quit focusing on what you DON’T have.
Allow yourself to leave your worrying behind to become a thing of the past.

Just as you guessed there are skills you can use to help yourself live in the moment, here are a few of them:

1.

Make a list of everything you have that makes you happy. Don’t try to be picky, just be thankful. These things, people, places may not be perfect but they are a part of your life. Make sure all of the people in your love understand how much they mean to you.

2.

Take time out of the day to do something special for yourself. Try having a square of chocolate in a bubble bath surrounded by calming lavender candles! Why not? No chocolate? Savor some tea.

3.

Do something special for someone you love.
Don’t expect anything in return, including a thank you.
Just watch their expression and see their enjoyment and know that it is because of you.

4.

Learn to laugh at everything.
Find humor everywhere and don’t take yourself so seriously.

5.

Keep a gratitude journal of everything you are thankful for. Try 5 things a day for a few weeks. Soon you will take notice of all of these wonderful things naturally.

Remember that for many of us, living in the moment is tough, it’s is a skill to be learned.
Start small and take each day as it comes.
Stop trying to change the past or live for the future and live in the right now.
I’m going to make a drastic change in my daily life to ensure that I experience each moment to it’s fullest and I know you can too.
This is your life, these are your years, let’s enjoy them.

Five Ways to Make Your Cat Smile

Bond with your pets by enjoying the same activity together are as often as you can. Make sure you set apart special time each day specifically for them — this will only strengthen your relationship and improve both of your health.

cat

1. Cat Nap

Choose a cozy spot on the floor, couch or bed and curl up with a comfy blanket and pillow — cats enjoy snuggling at all hours of the day and a little sleep doesn’t hurt either! Keep a little nook near your body for him/her to lay in and bond with you.

2. Catnip Playtime

It’s always fun to grow a little fresh catnip in your balcony garden if your cat happens to enjoy the bitter scent. Although I’ve heard that some cats actually aren’t affected by it, I’ve never seen one!

If yours is fresh, dry it, if not it’s likely dried and crumbled. Bring out a cozy rug and sprinkle catnip all over it.. let kitty smell this! Grab some pompoms, little rattle balls, mice and string. Sprinkle them around the rug if catnip. Chill out with kitty and toss him/her pompoms and ribbons to delight her cat-nipped senses!

3. On the Hunt for Cookies

Give your cat something fun to do and eat at the same time. Purchase some healthy cat treats that are great for teeth (Hobbes loves Greenies!) and hide them around the room — one on a chair, one behind the table, etc. Let your cat explore the room for his favorite snack while at the same time encouraging his hunting instinct.

4. Cat Massage

Most cats appreciate attention from those they love, let alone a great massage session. Make sure you always make time each day to scratch behind his ears, scratch his back and of course cause the beloved elevator butt!

5. Smell-a-thon

Ha! So cats love to smell, if you can it’s great to take yours outside (on a harness) to sniff the plants and flowers around the home. My cat *loves* to do this.

Make sure when you come home from anywhere you let your cat smell your hand — it’s like shaking hands for them and they get all kinds of information about where you were.

Just Say No to Negativity

In order to focus on the positive aspects of my life, one of my main goals (and a tough one to tackle most of the time) is to get rid of the negativity in my life. As you know, negative can come in many, many forms and a lot of these forms are out of your control. Negative thoughts are sneaky little devils, creeping into our minds and trying with great persistence to lead us away from the positive. And, unfortunately, once we open the door to one negative thought, a bunch of others seem to sneak in.

So how can you stop the negativity from taking over? Here are some things I try to remember when I’m tempted to embrace negative thoughts:

monsterNegativity is boring. For most people, it is easier to be negative than it is to be positive. Most people give into (and, in fact, often embrace) negativity, and end up giving up negativevibes. Their attitudes and actions become negative. If you are thinking negatively, you are like so many other people — taking the easy path. The easy path is not only uninteresting, but it is also detrimental to your well-being (even though, at the time, it may feel satisfying to giveinto that negative emotion or thought).

Negativity is unattractive. People like happy people; it’s a fact. Would you rather be around someone who is grumpy and moping and complaining or would you rather spend time with someone who is uplifting and always looking for the good in a situation? Exactly. People don’t want to be around negative people so you will be a lot more popular (with others and with yourself) if you keep a positive attitude.

Negativity is pointless. Being negative does not get you anywhere. There is absolutely nothing to be gained from looking at the negative side of things. While the positive may, at times, be idealistic, it forces your brain to think about happiness and increases the positivity in your emotions and actions. Thinking negatively does not. It does absolutely nothing for you, so why do it?

Negativity is tiring. Think about about happy thought. Now think about a sad one. Which thought was more draining? Emotionally and physically, thinking negatively can take it’s toll on our minds and bodies. While it sometimes feels like the easier thought to embrace, the more negative thought will ultimately cause more harm than good because it will allow your mind to be open to other negative thoughts. One negative thought can lead to another and before you know it, you are emotionally drained from thinking thoughts that make you upset, sad, or angry.

Negativity is time-consuming. Even though a lot of the time it is a negative thought jumps to the forefront of our minds, it actually takes a lot more time to think about things from a negative perspective. For example, if you allow yourself to think about what might go wrong in a situation, it’s very likely that your mind will wander to all of the other possible scenarios in which something could go wrong. You will then begin to worry about those scenarios and attempt to think about ways to solve potential problems. You will have spent time stressing about situations that may or may not happen — all because you let in one negative thought. Not only will you be wasting time and emotional energy, but you are also allowing yourself to live too much in the future, a place that is completely unknown and completely unworthy of your worrying thoughts.

Now that we’ve looked at some of the reasons not to be negative, let’s think about some ways to avoid negativity. One way is to concentrate on your thoughts and emotions and take control of them. Focus on remaining positive and living in the present moment. For more on these, see my post on mindfulness. Another way to avoid negativity is to communicate with others. As I have mentioned, clear communication often avoids conflicts and avoiding conflicts can avoid reasons to stray into negative territory. In addition, negativity can be avoided by having something positive to focus on other than your thoughts. If you like to walk, take a walk. If you have a favorite TV show, watch it. If you have a friend who always cheers you up, call him or her. Sometimes the easiest way to avoid the negativity creeping into your life is to distract yourself from it. There is a fine line between distracting yourself and ignoring a problem, but if you are certain the negative thoughts will not lead to a productive understanding of a situation, person, or problem (which is most often the case), it is best to avoid the thoughts altogether.

Negativity can be hard to escape. Not only do we have our own minds to contend with, but we must deal with those around us who can be negative, we must tackle negative environments or situations, and we must deal with negative images in the media. However, there are many ways to avoid negativity. Whether it is removing yourself from a situation or taking the time to think about your own viewpoint, removing (or, at the very least, lessening) negativity is an essential step to embracing a positive life.