• Kimberly Van Hal, REALTOR

5 Ways to Smile More


Feeling down? It happens. However, if the blues seem to follow you everywhere you go, consider these simple tips for raising your mood.

Surround yourself with flowers. Flowers have been shown to subtly lift the spirit of those around them. Grow a flower garden in the spring and summer and bring those blooms inside with you. Feeling low in the winter? Create a flower budget. Just $5 – $10 a week could bring a gorgeous bouquet into your life. Place it on your desk at work or wherever you spend a lot of time.

Adopt a pet. Furry friends bring an endless amount of joy into the lives of their owners, from play time to snuggling and beyond. If you have the schedule and resources that allow you to responsibly adopt a pet, do it, and let the smiling begin.

Do a random act of kindness. Kindness has a boomerang effect, so don’t be afraid to dole it out. Volunteer, help a friend before they even ask for it or do something smaller. Next time you’re in line at the grocery store, offer the person with only one item waiting behind you to step ahead.

Create a happiness ritual. What makes you happy? A long bath with an enjoyable book? Journaling for 15 minutes every morning? Yoga? A walk with a friend? Incorporate more of this into your day to lift your mood.

Identify downers. Some downers, like a stressful job or a sick family member, cannot be avoided. But others, like a long commute or a toxic relationship, can be identified and cut. Ask your boss if you can work from home one day a week to avoid the commute, or if possible, look for another job closer to home. Another downer that may be hiding in plain view? Social media. Monitor how you feel before and after you spend time on Instagram or Facebook and act accordingly.

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