Positive psychologists have been studying happiness for about 30 years. And guess what? You can control your own happiness! Here are 5 things that nurses can do to maintain a positive attitude and boost their happiness score:
Hang out with happy people. It rubs off.
Cultivate an attitude of appreciation. Begin to notice the positive moments and events of your day. Write down three to five positive events/experiences each evening. Even fleeting moments of joy count here! Keep the list daily for at least two weeks and you are likely to notice a change in your happiness. Then continue on—gratitude and appreciation are proven paths to happiness.
Live in the moment.
Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is tomorrow. You only have right now. Enjoy the "now."
Decide to be happy and act that way. Do it again tomorrow. Over time you will build new pathways in your brain and it will be easier to control your mood. What are you waiting for?
Learn to deal with then let go of uncomfortable feelings. We are hardwired to hang onto uncomfortable emotions longer than comfortable (or "good") feelings. This was adaptive when we lived in caves, but can be a problem now that we have access to bad news 24/7.
Deal with difficult and stressful issues as they arise then shake off the uncomfortable feelings. If you allow them to cling to you, you risk your health (too much cortisol) and your happiness.
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