Want to Know How to be Happy? Try These Tips

Do you want to know how to be happy?

The secret is simple: You must choose to be happy – because happiness is a choice. And you’re the only one in charge of your happiness.

Yep, you’re in charge of your happiness. Not your partner, mother, boss or best friend.

Being happy isn’t the absolute sum of how much good or bad happens to you. It’s how you choose to view your life and the things that happen to you. You can read my post about the key skills needed to cultivate more happiness here.

If you’re not feeling happy right […]

Why You’re Feeling Stuck and How To Get Unstuck

Are you feeling stuck?

The experience of stuckness is the perception of limited choices.

If you think your current job is your only option (even though you’ve exceeded your goals every year but haven’t been promoted), I bet you’re feeling stuck.

If you’re only staying with you’re boyfriend because you don’t think you’ll ever meet anyone else, I bet you’re feeling stuck.

No one likes feeling stuck.

But in order to get unstuck, you have to step back and really look at your life. This means assessing the good stuff – like your strengths, abilities and resources. Next comes the not so good […]

A Simple Strategy to Help You Feel Better

How many hundreds of times have the words “I can’t help how I feel!” come out of your mouth?  You probably started saying it as a child, and then grew to believe it as an adult.

But what if I told you that this isn’t true?  What if I told you that you can help how you feel and you can feel better—because your feelings are not facts.

Most of your emotional reactions in life, how you feel about certain situations, are actually dictated by what you think.

Your mind leads and your heart follows.  Sounds counter-intuitive, right?

Consider this example.  You’re […]

How A Gratitude List Will Make You Happier

When you hear the research about gratitude and how making a gratitude list improves your health, makes you feel more connected to others, and lifts your mood – are you skeptical?

How are you going to feel better just by making a list?

And do those psychologists actually think that this Pollyanna-attitude-thing is going to help when you’re really feeling crappy?

It may sound too good to be true, but I’m here to tell you it’s not.

Gratitude increases happiness and is a great antidote to many things, including anger and bitterness (read this post I wrote to learn more about […]

7 Tips to Bring Positivity Into Your Life

Every day has something positive in it.  Some days you just have to look a little harder.  Here are seven things you can do to bring positivity and happiness into your life.

Write in a gratitude journal every day.

Make sure to be specific!  A number of studies have found gratitude to be linked with positive emotions, and overall well-being and life satisfaction.  And writing in your journal every day will help it to become a habit.

Listen to music that sounds the way you want to feel.

Research has shown that music activates the region of the brain that releases […]

A Mother’s Day Message of Thanks to My Son

I am blessed to have an incredible mom who has shaped my life in countless ways.  I wrote a post about that last Mother’s Day, and in the year since she has continued to amaze me with her generosity, seemingly limitless energy and unconditional love and support.

But this year, I also want to take a moment to offer my deep gratitude and appreciation to my son, and acknowledge all of the important lessons he has taught me since that incredible day, six years ago, when I became his mother.

There is no other experience in my life that […]

4 Simple Ways to Stress Less

Stressed out? You’re not alone.

Many of my patients come to see me because they’re feeling stressed out. Unfortunately, stress is a part of life and you can’t ever completely get rid of it—but you can transform your experience of it and learn to stress less.

The key to managing stress effectively is remembering that in stressful situations you have a choice about what to focus on and how to respond. You can either stress out about the long line for your morning latte, or take a mindful moment and breathe in and out slowly and deeply until it’s […]

Give Yourself Some Love This Valentine’s Day

I was making Valentine’s cards with my 5-year-old son, and as he was counting to make sure there was a card for each kid in the class, he casually said, “Oh wait, I need to make one for myself!”

This got me thinking about how infrequently we stop to offer ourselves love and appreciation. In fact, all too often we do the exact opposite and beat ourselves up and put ourselves down.

So this Valentine’s Day, I suggest you take the sage advice of a child and start giving yourself some love and appreciation on a regular basis. Here are […]

How To Tell If You’re Stressed or Depressed

Feeling stressed out? You’re not alone. Seventy-two percent of adults surveyed by the American Psychological Association reported feeling stressed out at least some of the time during the past month.

Regardless of what you’re stressing about, stress can quickly turn into a problem when it builds and starts to cause wear and tear on your body—and your overall mental state.  In fact, if left unmanaged stress can actually lead to depression.

Chronic stress leads to physical changes in your brain and body, changes in the way you’re thinking, and ultimately to changes in the way you’re behaving.

Stressed out people […]

4 Ways to Help Relieve Anxiety and Stress During the Holidays

I love the excitement of the holidays, but I know it’s also a time when many people are dealing with more stress and anxiety than usual.

If you’re feeling frazzled, I’m here to help with some easy-to-incorporate tips that will help relieve anxiety, stress and the blues.

A mindfulness practice is one of the best ways to relieve anxiety and stress, but you might find it hard to fit into your schedule right now—exactly when you need it most. I recently wrote a post for The Guardian with two simple mindful meditation exercises that you can […]