1. Remember the 90%.
As humans, we have a negativity bias. This means that by nature we notice and pick up on the negative things in our lives more easily than the positive ones. This is good for our survival as a species, but bad for our happiness.
When I'm in the midst of a challenge, I need to remind myself that 90% of my life is still going really well. Otherwise that small 10% will occupy my thoughts so much it will get inflated and out of proportion.
Parents can get really serious sometimes. We have real-life responsibilities after all. But looking at life through serious lenses draws more serious circumstances our way. Why?
Because what we notice, we make bigger. It's kind of like highlighting the serious with a magnifying glass.
3. Forget yourself for a little while.
We need to consider what will make us happier, and it's not selfish to do so. But sometimes we need to forget ourselves for a little while--because making others happy results in a happiness boost, too.
If you need to love your life more today, think up an idea or a surprise for your kids. Maybe a movie you know they'd love, a project that you've been putting off they really want to work on, or a fun outing. Nothing blesses me more than watching my kids' faces light up in surprise and joy.
4. Stop thinking so much and go rest.
An Irish proverb states that "a good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything." So true. Most people overanalyze and overthink their lives. Constantly spinning our inner wheels, we get nowhere, solve no problems, and make ourselves feel worse.
Your mind will always want to solve problems when you're at your weakest--emotionally or physically. It will tempt you with thoughts swirling round and round. But solutions to real issues rarely come in those overwhelming moments.
Try going to sleep for the night or taking a nap instead if you can. You may wake up to find your problems aren't really that serious. You may even wake up with the perfect solution, and it will have come effortlessly.
5. Think about 10 years from now.
In ten years, my children will be 18, 19, and 20. Are you kidding me?! That seems outrageous, but it's true.
When I remember that fact, it helps me see that this moment we're living right now, with its unique challenges and joys, truly is fleeting. Sometimes that reminder alone is enough to jolt me back to where I am and love my life even more.
Your life is precious, today and every today. Don't let the beauty of it pass you by.
"We can easily manage if we will only take, each day, the burden appointed to it. But the load will be too heavy for us if we carry yesterday's burden over again today, and then add the burden of the morrow before we are required to bear it."