Happy Moments

Cultivate a more joyful daily life: top tips from Madison-area experts
 By Emily Leas

Own what you own.
In the midst of a conflict, be it at home, work or school, it’s often easier to blame everything and everyone else for that conflict. Tina Paulus-Krause, owner of TrueYou, LLC, a Madison coaching business focused on women, suggests acknowledging that some of the fault may lie with you. “Even when there is fault elsewhere, try not focusing on that and bringing it back to what you own in that situation. Maybe you didn’t say something you could’ve, or you said something that you shouldn’t have. It’s all self-accountability.”

Make time for the important things.
Once you have a firm grasp of your basic core values, Sarah Young, owner of Zing Collaborative, a Madison coaching business, says to schedule those things into our day in the same way you schedule work meetings or appointments. “Actually schedule 30 minutes to go outside in nature, or for me, it’s my hour at the beginning of the day. Whatever it is, treat it with the same level of priority as we do our other commitments.”

Find your tribe.
“You are not alone. Everyone is going through this journey. We might all look very different on the outside, but internally we are all very much the same,” says Paulus-Krause. Stop and take stock of that when you feel alone, and surround yourself with people that are going to lift you up.

Seek experiences over stuff.
As you begin to align your values with your everyday life, create experiences that allow you to recognize happiness. Teresa Atkin, Madison-area certified master life coach says gathering experiences over material possessions provides many advantages. “Make the most out of anticipatory happiness. Start to look forward to the experience before it even happens. Then while you’re there or experiencing it, share your own wonder and awe with others. Then afterward share the memories, both good and bad.”

Look into the mirror.
It’s easy to lie to ourselves and say, “I’m too tired to exercise.” But Paulus-Krause suggests actually looking in the mirror and saying that same thing when that little saboteur voice in your head speaks up. “You’re gonna call BS on yourself! The mirror is a fabulous way to get true and honest with yourself.”

Cultivate gratitude.
An attitude of gratitude sets the stage for big things to happen in your life. It changes your thought process and your perspective, says Paulus-Krause.

Love yourself first.
“Change starts with self-love, so learn how to be your own best friend,” says Paulus-Krause. Stop the negative thoughts and self-sabotage. Loving yourself leads to living as your true authentic self.

Create a resonant yes through the power of no.
“Something I work on a lot especially with my female clients is getting so clear on what we value and what’s important that it becomes easier to say no to the things that don’t align with our values,” says Young. But don’t stop there. Do the work to practice the process of saying “no” in the moment in a way that is compassionate and truthful, even when it’s hard.

Find your outlet.
Art, music, nature, exercise, sex. Atkin advises you make time for it and appreciate yourself for making it a priority.

For more on happiness from these experts, read this.

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