Tuesday, 27 January 2015

INSTANT HAPPINESS: JUST ADD WATER

happiness is not something ready made it comes from your own actions

Every now and then, I find myself feeling unhappy and wallowing in self-pity - that is when I feel this urge to slap myself for being pathetic and whiny because a lot of times, I am being unhappy by choice. Of course, sadness is an inevitable part of our lives, but doesn't that just make it even more vital to do away with the unnecessary and avoidable ones?

Sometimes I think about the past and regret, which is utterly useless because what good will looking back do when moving forward is obviously the more beneficial and productive option for me? Sometimes I feel lonely and invisible, but a lot of times all I need to do is be less passive and reach out to my friends instead of always waiting for them to take the initiative.

Recently, I feel like the need to take control of my life is getting more pressing. I get overwhelmed by all the schoolwork that keeps piling up higher and higher, I feel invisible and ignored around some of my friends, I keep procrastinating my internship applications, and my mind tends to drift off to the past with regrets abound. Instead of letting my irrational feelings determine how my day turns out, perhaps I should be the one taking control over how my feelings play out.

I guess these things do not guarantee happiness for extended periods of time, but doing things that make you happy in the short-term is a good start. Fake it till you make it, yeah?

Trampoline park

This would be a more pricey option plus you might require company, but I think if you ever need to take your mind off things, this is a great way to get those endorphins going (am I getting my psych facts right?)

Just look at Rachel jumping away here, haha!

How can you feel sad while jumping on trampolines? I think it is physically impossible to feel sad while jumping on trampolines.

If jumping on trampolines does not work then maybe try jumping on some tramps.

Get some exercise

A more convenient option would be to get some exercise the normal cost-free way. I find that jogging takes my mind off things pretty well, especially if the weather is perfect for a run (i.e. lots of breeze). Isn't it scientifically proven that exercise makes people feel good? So get your lazy ass out of misery and get some fresh air!

Clean your room 

Whenever I feel like sluggish and loathe myself for being such an unproductive lazy bum, I do a bit of cleaning or tidying up. It doesn't even have to be a big deal, just cleaning my desk would do. Removing clutter, rearranging my things so it is neater and wiping the desk top can be all it takes to make me feel more productive and get me geared up to do some work. If you simply have no time to spare, just sweeping the floor might work as well. I get a slight sense of accomplishment plus I feel more productive, which makes me feel better about myself in general, if that makes any sense.

Happy playlist

I did the dumbest thing of listening to sad songs about heartbreak/lost love/etc (see: 龙卷风 and 安静 by Jay Chou) and got myself into an unnecessary pensive and broody mood that night. Stupid how I do this to myself when I could just as easily do the opposite by listening to happy songs that can lift my mood instead.

I have this 'Happy Vibes' playlist in my iPod that is filled with happy and upbeat songs, which comes in handy whenever I need some cheering up. Anything melancholic like Jay Chou and Death Cab for Cutie is a no-no in your happy playlist!

A random happy playlist from 8tracks:


Karaoke

Karaoke is awesomeTeoheng is the best. Cheap karaoke + you can bring in your own food and drinks + they provide you with a tambourine and some shaking percussion thingy to create even more noise = BEST PLACE EVER. 

Seriously, I feel like everyone should learn to lose their inhibition and sing karaoke because it is just so much fun. This is the one place you can sing as loudly or terribly as you want and avoid getting judged. Just sing your heart out.

Getting over a heartbreak? Pour out your feelings by singing sad Jay Chou songs. Want to lift your mood? Sing something chill like The Lazy Song or do something crazy like rap along to Super Bass (a must in every of my Teoheng sessions, hee). There is always a song for every mood.

Alternatively, you can sing anywhere you want as long as you do not care about being judged or complained about. The world is your karaoke.

Watch a sitcom

My favourite way to cheer myself up! I love watching shows of varying genres but sitcoms are my favourite because they never fail to take my mind off things. Friends, The Mindy Project, Modern Family or The Big Bang Theory are my favourites.

Friends is my absolute #1 choice because it is just so... comforting. I am re-watching it for the fifth or sixth time already, and I am still not sick of it. Each time I watch it, I catch a new joke that I missed the previous time. Also, the group of friends being there for each other despite all their shitty moments in life just makes me feel more reassured about my own life and uncertain future. 


Modern Family is great because each episode has a lesson behind it, and there is always a happy ending. It reminds you how your family will be there for you no matter what. Also, Phil, Gloria and Luke are the most adorable characters ever!!

Aww Phil


Read a book

Mindless chick lit are the best! When I have so many things to read for school already, all I want is something relatively shallow to take my mind off things. Anything by Sophie Kinsella works for me. Basically, nothing by John Green (love of your life dying of cancer) or Jodi Picoult (murder and cancer and high school shootings, oh my). I love their books but when it comes to cheering up, I try to steer clear of them.

Manage your expectations

This is not an activity per se, but it is something I realised is important to do. I think it is about time I constantly remember that many things in life will not turn out exactly how I want them to be. As much as we can strive for perfection, it is only something to work towards but never achieve, much like an asymptote.

A lot of times, I get upset because I expect too much of others and they end up letting me down. I tend to project the expectations I have for myself on others as well, whether as a friend or as a group member, but that is just setting myself up for disappointment. 

***

I feel like life just keeps getting harder and reality keeps smacking me in the face. Ignorance is bliss and the privilege of seeing the world through a rose-tinted glass is long gone. It is inevitable - with every day you experience, something happens (to yourself or to others) that makes you realise how life is actually like. Each day, I am reminded of more and more reasons why the future might seem bleak, which makes it more crucial than ever befor to keep my emotions and expectations in check.

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