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The Best TV Show To Feel Joy, Amazement And Awe

The study compared TV show genres to see which makes people happiest.

Watching nature documentaries — like being out in nature itself — can help you feel happier.

The survey of 7,500 people around the world found they felt happier after viewing clips from BBC nature documentaries.

The study compared watching the documentary to the news or a popular drama show.

People reported that after viewing the nature documentary they felt more:

  • joy,
  • amazement,
  • awe,
  • and curiosity.

At the same time it reduced feelings of anger, tiredness and stress.

Professor Dacher Keltner, who teamed up with the BBC for the study, said:

“I have long believed that nature and viewing sublime and beautiful nature in painting, film and video shifts how we look at the world, and humbles us, brings into focus our core goals, diminishes the petty voice of the self and strengthens our nervous system.
When the BBC approached me about working together, it was a no-brainer.
I think their video content inspires green tendencies in viewers.”

Professor Keltner said:

“The importance of the Real Happiness study is that brief exposures to Planet Earth II content bring greater awe, positive emotion, and wellbeing to people in six countries.
The results also show that younger people are highly stressed out, and that viewing videos about the natural world reduces their stress, which tells me that we can turn to other kinds of new social media content to find calm during these highly stressful times.”

The study was part of the Real Happiness Project.

source: PsyBlog
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5 Great Ways To Experience More Joy and Feel Happy About Life

I think the majority of us in this world want to be happy, whether we know it or not. With all that life brings us, however, it can be easier said than done at times, and we can forget how to just be simply happy. They say the goal behind every goal is happiness, and I would tend to agree with that. When we choose to be happy, our life just flows, and that happiness can have a positive effect on everybody that we meet. When we are not happy, however, that affects everybody too.

Esther Hicks, in her book Ask and It Is Given, offers some wonderful insight into happiness:

The greatest gift that you could ever give to another is your own happiness, for when you are in a state of joy, happiness, or appreciation, you are fully connected to the Stream of pure, positive Source Energy that is truly who you are. And when you are in that state of connection, anything or anyone that you are holding as your object of attention benefits from your attention.

Here are some methods I have found useful for helping me to achieve happiness in my life.

1. Stop Comparing

Many of us can compare ourselves, our lives, our possessions, our jobs, our money, etc. to other people around us. We can compare ourselves to what is being portrayed on the media as the perfect life and feel that we are not good enough as a result. We may even compare where our lives are now to where we were at another time.

When somebody has a so-called better house, car, or job, it doesn’t mean that they are happier than you, or happier than they were before they had these things. Some of the happiest people I have met are people who have very little. Happiness doesn’t come from the external things, as we are brainwashed to believe. It is an inside job.

When we compare ourselves to something or somebody outside ourselves, we are essentially not loving or accepting ourselves. We can never know what another person’s journey is. The first step is to start to love and accept yourself exactly as you are and where you are.

2. Be Present

If we are living our lives in the past or in the future, it is practically impossible to be in the here and now, where all happiness exists. When we choose to be present, we allow ourselves to be happy. We all have things that we regret and that we would like to change about the past. Similarly, there are certain things or ways that we would like our future life to be, but the only moment we ever have is now.

We can live our lives attached to the story of our past, or we can choose to be happy now and let go of the past. It’s important to plan for the future but still be present in what you are engaging with right now, knowing that it is moving you in the direction of where you want to be.

The key to being present, in my experience, is to become aware of when I am not present. Engaging in activities that I enjoy has also helped me to become more present.

the-present-moment-thich-rs

3. Let Go Of Expectations

If we have expectations of people, jobs, places, etc. to be a certain way for us to be happy then we are allowing our happiness to be dependent on something outside of ourselves. We are attached to something for our happiness.

I can see in my own life that at times I allowed my happiness to be determined by how successful I was in my job or if I had a great relationship with somebody I love. Sometimes when I was not successful in these areas, I experienced unhappiness.

What I have found helpful is to go for what I want, do the best I can, and let go of the expectation for the result to be a certain way. I was in India a couple of years ago and before I went I decided to let go of any expectations of India to be a certain way. I have found this approach very useful in having a happier experience, in any situation.

4. Be True To Yourself

A quote I heard awhile ago is:

“To be yourself in a world that is trying night and day to make you like everybody else, is probably the greatest battle there is to fight.”

At times it can be difficult for us to be ourselves, and we need great courage and strength to be true to ourselves.

I have noticed that when I’m not true to myself, I experience unhappiness. In my last job, for example, I felt that I wasn’t being true to myself and that I was compromising my happiness for the sake of a wage check at the end of the week.

As I mentioned earlier, I went to India some time ago. It had been a longtime dream of mine to travel India and embrace the culture there, and I really did feel that I was being true to myself while I was traveling India.

Be true to yourself and live life based on your own approval and acceptance. Learn to listen to and trust your heart and just go for what you want. Ask yourself, “What makes my heart sing?”

5. Be Grateful

When we are in the mode of blaming and complaining we are not in a place of gratitude. We are essentially focusing on the negative and usually creating more of that in our lives.

When I was in India, I saw people who could have a real reason to complain. Many people were actually sleeping on the streets there, sometimes whole families. Other times I saw people who had lost limbs or suffered through terrible illnesses. India taught me that I have so much to be grateful for.

Being grateful for where we are right now is definitely a key to happiness. We have so much to be grateful for, such as our health, our job, our house, our family, our friends, etc. Being grateful is not just about saying it but about really feeling and believing it.

Micheál O’mathúna      February 14, 2016

MICHEÁL O’MATHÚNA
Micheál O’Mathúna is the Producer and Presenter of the popular Radio Show called http://www.thehealthzoneshow. Previous guests on his show have included John Gray, Marianne Williamson, Robert Kiyosaki, Byron Katie and Julia Cameron. He is also a Media Journalist, Filmmaker and Media Relations Consultant. You can listen to some of his past radio shows on http://www.thehealthzoneshow.com or you can check out his website on http://www.omcommunications.ie


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10 Ways Mentally Strong People Handle Stress

Handling stress poorly can negatively affect your well-being, but the good news is that you can learn the 10 ways that mentally strong people deal with stress and start using these techniques today.

Stress that is unmanaged can lead to physical health problems like high blood pressure, but can chronic stress can also develop into depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. Rather than continue to handle stress poorly, let’s look at the 10 ways that mentally strong people handle stress effectively.

10 WAYS MENTALLY STRONG PEOPLE HANDLE STRESS

1. ACCEPT THAT STRESSFUL EVENTS WILL HAPPEN
We all know that things are bound to happen to upset even the most planned out day, but mentally strong people acknowledge this up front. There is going to be something unplanned for that happens to you, but you can begin planning for it now. Tell yourself now that although you know something stressful may happen today, you are prepared to handle it.

2. USE MULTIPLE STRESS MANAGEMENT TOOLS
Researchers in the Journal of Occupational Medicine studied workplace stress management programs and found that one that included goal setting, problem solving, identifying and questioning negative thoughts, relaxation, and time management was helpful for people to handle stress effectively. This strategy of using multiple techniques to handle stress is one that mentally strong people employ all the time.

3. TAKE CONTROL
Mentally strong people look at what is causing the stress and look for ways to prevent it from happening again. By making changes in their environment, they can avoid or reduce causes of stress.

4. AFFIRMATIONS
Use positive self-talk to remind yourself of just how capable you are when stressful situations come up. For example, say ‘I’ve handled situations like this before and I know I can handle this just fine too.’

5. TIME MANAGEMENT
Much of our perceived stress comes from not having enough time to get done what we want to get done. By planning ahead for lost time, we can make sure that we have enough time in the day for everything, without being stressed when something does inevitably delay us.

For example, if you have a full schedule and worry about being late to your next appointment, next time book your day with 20-30 minute gaps of time in between appointments. That way if there is too much traffic, the delay won’t seem as stressful to you due to the extra time that you planned in to your day.

Stress

Stress

6. SOCIAL SUPPORT
Researchers studying how people handle stress found that a strong social support network was linked to mental well-being. Some people find it challenging to ask for help because they like to be self-reliant. We all need help at some point, so being able to recognize when you have reached a significant stress-level and ask for help to get yourself back to a calm state is an excellent skill that mentally strong people use to handle stress.

7. THEY DO NOT AVOID STRESS
The same study that showed that social support helped mentally strong people to handle stress found that if they used the technique of avoiding things that they thought of as stressful, their mental well-being decreased significantly.

Avoiding is just a way of delaying handling stress. Running away from a problem never solved anything so choosing to face your worries and acknowledge the uncomfortable feelings while using another coping strategy is better for your mental strength.

8. SEE THOUGHTS ABOUT STRESS AS TEMPORARY
Thoughts come and go and some are terribly negative. Our awareness of our negative thoughts about stress is an excellent skill to have. This mindfulness can then be taken to the next level. Rather than avoid or repress negative thoughts about stress, see them as temporary mental events that will be gone fairly soon.

This is a strategy called ‘decentering’ by psychologists, where we challenge negative thoughts. We can choose to accept our negative thoughts as fact, or we can acknowledge that we were making a bigger deal than we needed to about the stressful event, and allow that thought to pass away from our minds like a cloud.

9. LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE
This one stressful event is not going to change the course of your life all by itself. You are still a fantastically talented, creative and intelligent person who just had a negative experience. Mentally strong people know that although the surface of the ocean is turbulent, deep down it is calm.

10. THEY FIND WAYS TO ADD JOY
Adding a few moments of laughter to a stressful day can be all it takes to handles stress well. Even in the midst of a crisis, being able to laugh at yourself for how you overreact or misjudge something is a way to shift from a negative mindset to a positive one. For example you might say, ‘Well that was silly of me to forget my wallet, but hey, at least I noticed it before I was at the cash register with a full shopping cart.’

JUNE 28, 2016      source: www.powerofpositivity.com


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11 Ways To Be The Change You Wish To See In The World

BY JO CASEY    JANUARY 7, 2014 

Do you ever get frustrated that the world seems to be on a downward spiral? It’s easy to feel helpless in the face of war, environmental damage and inequality. But there’s a way you can take back your sense of control and power and, as the saying goes, be the change you wish to see in the world.

1. Be grateful.

Not just for the things you have in your world, but for the people too. Tell them how much you love and appreciate them.

2. Show it when you’re thankful.

Had a great service in a restaurant? Did someone say something kind to you just at the very moment you needed a lift? Thank them. Why not give those around you (yes, even those you don’t know very well) the gift of a positive comment?

3. Be joyful.

It can seem like there’s so much negativity in the world: news programs that only show disasters, corruption and arguing politicians, illness, relationship breakdowns, layoffs, conflict. Many of us can get into a funk or worse when we see all the conflict and drama. So provide a counterbalance for those around you, and become a role model for joyful living. This doesn’t mean being a Pollyanna, ignoring pain or laughing at misery. Nor does it mean pretending to be happy when that’s not how you feel inside. But it does mean not being afraid to share your joy. Look at the Dalai Lama — exiled from his country, witness to so much horror and cruelty in his lifetime, yet smiling and joyful.

4. Be kind.

I don’t know why, but kindness seems to be out of fashion in lots of circles, replaced by tough love and blaming people for their misfortunes. It would seem the milk of human kindness is in short supply, according to many newspapers and reality TV shows I see. But I refuse to believe it to be true. Reach out when you see someone fall. Give the kind word. Help with the groceries. Compliment people. Be compassionate. Just be a bit nicer. Don’t let the world grind you down and harden you. Put out what you’d like to get back.

children-hugs

5. Beware of judgment.

We all judge. We all look down on people. Every. Single. One. Of. Us. Don’t beat yourself up for it — just be aware and make sure you don’t act on it. Make sure you challenge yourself when you do. And make sure you’re aware of WHY you judge. When we judge, we dehumanize and reduce someone down to her actions. We do it to make ourselves feel better. Instead of judging, try a bit of empathy. It works wonders.

6. Let go of the need to be right.

How many times have you found yourself in an argument and forgotten what you were arguing about? Ask yourself if it’s really worth it. Where can you find some common ground? Would you rather be right than be happy?

7. Accept things for what they are.

Fighting the things that can’t be change is the surest route to unhappiness. Instead, accept and make the best of your situation, even as you try to make changes.

8. Practice self-compassion.

Being good to yourself will help you to be a kinder, more compassionate person all around. You can’t give to others what you don’t give to yourself.

9. Don’t take your sh*t out on other people.

We all have bad days. We get stressed out. It doesn’t help anyone if you’re snapping, snarling and generally discharging to everyone around you. If you need to blow, take yourself off somewhere quiet and deal with it. Don’t be the cause of someone else’s bad day.

10. Connect with your sense purpose.

When you live and work to your values and purpose, you build joy, resilience and passion. You discover strengths you never knew you had and become a beacon of possibly to others.

11. Look for the good in the world.

It’s all around you. Smile. That’s infectious.


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7 Ways To Create More Joy In Your Life

BY JUDE BIJOU     JULY 2, 2013 

Joy is an emotion, and emotions are wordless. They’re pure physical sensations in our bodies. We express the emotion of joy in many physical ways. For example, we jump for joy when we win a hard-fought competition, or we double over in uncontrollable laughter when someone relates a hilarious story. We squeal with delight after getting a surprise gift, and whoop and holler exuberantly when we hear fantastic news. We feel buoyant and jubilant on beautiful day.

When we feel joy, we feel great about ourselves. We feel confident, powerful, capable, lovable and fulfilled. These are all good reasons to experience more joy in our life. Here are seven ways to do it.

1. Undertake a challenging activity with a commitment to mastering it.

Think of a project you’ve wanted to accomplish, whether it’s creating a small flower garden in your yard, learning how to give your car a tuneup, or mastering the tango. The process of setting a goal, learning the necessary steps to achieve it, and giving it your best until you’ve mastered it will generate high self-esteem and pride. Those are feelings associated with joy.

2. Actively seek joy through inspiration.

Another way to get more joy into our lives is to find it through activities that stretch our perceptions and take us out of ordinary day-to-day life. Engaging in meditation and prayer are two obvious ways to produce a feeling of well-being, serenity, and joy. Being alone in nature is another way to feel the joy of beauty — and oneness with a greater whole.

3. Engage in an activity that’s pleasurable and feels like play.

Do an uplifting and enjoyable activity that’s not goal-oriented, but just plain fun. A few examples include throwing a Frisbee with your dog, dancing, hiking, looking at beautiful art, enjoying a concert, or making love. Play and other activities that don’t have a purpose other than helping us feel relaxed and happy keep our mind focused in the present. The present is where joy lives.

4. Deal with the sadness that blocks joy.

When we feel sad, joy it isn’t possible to also feel bubbly and exhilarated. In a place that feels safe and private, constructively express your sadness by allowing yourself to cry. While crying, acknowledge your hurts and losses. Don’t indulge any negative thoughts about yourself. Just keep telling yourself, “I’m fine. It’s okay to cry. I just feel sad.” You’ll immediately feel washed clean — even joyful.

 

joy

5. Honor yourself consciously and frequently.

Joy doesn’t come from others; it comes from within. Interrupt negative thoughts about yourself and replace them with statements that honor yourself, such as, “I’m fine the way I am. I’m whole and complete. I did my best. I can do this. I love myself. What I’m seeking is within me.” Also, focus on the good and what you did well. Write down self-appreciations so you can read and say them frequently. The more you reinforce these concepts, the more they’ll become reality.

6. Give yourself a break from the day-to-day world.

Nurture yourself. Set up a time, just for you, when you can disconnect from daily responsibilities and get away from the noise, stimulation, and demands of your world. Joy comes easily when we focus on our own needs in a caring and loving way. Get a massage. Close the door, put your feet up, and watch the world outside your window. Take a nap. These kinds of activities replenish us and give our body and soul a chance to feel pure joy. Remind yourself: My job is to take care of myself.

7. Say the word often and contemplate its meaning.

Repeating and contemplating the word joy can actually create that emotion. Say it over and over, varying the speed, tone, and tempo until you laugh. Notice how your body feels when you say the word. Did your chest expand? Did your face relax? Think about what joy means to you. Be as specific as possible, imagining the feeling of joy, the images it conjures up, perhaps even the people and situations who trigger joy. Sign off your emails with the word joy. Paint the word on a smooth rock and keep it on your desk. More joy will rise up if you simply invite it to do so.