Many of us struggle with sadness or depression, especially when so many of the things that have brought us satisfaction and happiness end either because of normal life changes or the pandemic. Maybe you have lost something like your health, or your job, or a special person or the ability to participate in activities that you used to enjoy. Or maybe you have no explanation for the feelings you have. I ran across this list of suggestions for things to lift your spirits and thought it was worth passing along.
- Shower. Not a bath, a shower. Just get in the water and let it run over you. Make the water any temperature that you want—hot or cold.
- Moisturize your skin everywhere. Use any lotion you like. Unscented or dollar store lotion. Or the lotion that makes you feel like a field of wildflowers.
- Put on clean comfortable clothes. Put on your favorite underwear. Perhaps cute lacy underwear or those ridiculous boxers with the Hawkeye logos on them that you were given as a Christmas gift and you never expected to wear for fear you would get in an accident and someone would see you in them. You know the ones that are at the bottom of your drawer.
- Drink cold water. Use ice. Add some mint or lemon for a burst of taste.
- Clean something. Doesn’t have to be big. Organize one drawer or a closet, or a load of laundry, or the bathroom sink. Sort old pictures.
- Blast music. Listen to something upbeat and dancey, something that has lots of energy. Sing to it, dance to it, even if you aren’t any good. For me, something from the 50’s or 60’s.
- Make some healthy food from scratch. Remember at the start of the pandemic when you couldn’t find yeast in the stores because everyone was making homemade bread. Maybe something from another culture with numerous steps in the recipe. You will feel that you have accomplished something.
- Create something. Write a short story or a poem. Draw or color a picture. Fold origami. Crochet or knit or learn if you have never done this before. Sculpt something out of clay. Make something from wood. Make something even if you think you’re not any good.
- Go outside. Take a walk. Sit in the grass. Look at the clouds. Put your hands in the dirt and plant something. Think about the unseen miracles in Nature.
- Call someone. Have a conversation and listen to some other person’s voice. Even if you don’t have much to say, listen to that person. Ask about their life. You may help lift their spirits too. Write a letter to a family member or a friend and tell them what they mean to you.
- Cuddle your pets. Take picture of them. Tell them about how you feel. Brush their coat.
- Find something to be grateful for and write it down. Do this everyday and watch as the list grows.
- Volunteer for an organization that needs you. Many organizations never have enough hands.
Remember that God loves you so keep looking forward. Open the Bible and see what those open pages provide for you. That small seed of hope and optimism is the first step toward happy.