7 Positive psychology techniques to improve your life
What is positive psychology? What makes us happy? Positive psychology is a branch of psychology that focuses on happiness and uses various techniques to achieve it. Positive Psychology does not seek treatment to stop negative things occuring. It looks for answers about what makes us enjoy our lives and be happier. And there is good news…..Positive Psychology can be learnt!
Emer, the brainchild of Kocoono™ and psychology professional, who originates from Belmullet in Mayo, is extremely passionate about the area of Positive Psychology.
We want to share her philosophy with you in this blog and discuss 7 techniques that will help you train your brain with simple positive psychology techniques that help make you live a happier life and be a happier person overall.
Pay attention to these techniques and train your brain with these positive psychology techniques :
1. Have a Gratitude Journal
Having a Gratitude Journal is probably the most popular Positive Psychology tool. It is a great buffer against negative emotions and many studies have found that those who regularly practice gratitude are happier, experience more positive emotions, are more energetic and see the world in a more positive light.
Our Kocoono™ Wellness Toolkit includes a Gratitude Journal that proposes you write down three items per day, every day, that you are grateful for. Some days you may have to dig deep but remember there is ALWAYS something to be grateful for!
2. Mindfulness: learn how to savor the moment
Due to our hectic world, we don't pause to feel the daily sensations: like, for example, the taste of every single sip of our hot cup of coffee in the morning, the scent of a fresh sea breeze or the relaxing sound of the fireplace in our living room. Noticing these sensory details helps you live and savor the moment while reflecting on pleasant memories.
Mindfulness is a great practice to learn how to balance your thoughts of past, present and future. It trains your brain to focus better, be patient and increase your attention to detail, letting you savor every single moment in your present and not spending more time than you should thinking about the past or the future.
Being mindful of your thoughts with a simple meditation practice has been proven to have so many benefits towards reducing stress, increasing calmness, clarity and focus, not to mention the reduction in depressive symptoms.
We find the use of the Kocoono™ Shoulder Hug or the Kocoono™ Customisable Weighted Lappad can help you to reach that meditative state faster by relaxing your body, releasing tension and helping you to get the correct posture in your meditations.
3. Connect with nature
Spending time in nature becomes a great ally to strengthen the body and spirit. Have you ever noticed that walking in nature or going on a hike makes you feel happier? Many studies showed that those people who walked in nature showed less anxiety and less rumination on life's little worries.
If you enjoy an outdoor workout surrounded by nature, its benefits multiply. We are fortunate to live in the Emerald Isle where we have beautiful green landscapes in which to get lost and connect with Mother Nature. We suggest you grab your bike or go for a walk through the flora and fauna, the sea and the sand that surrounds you, like we got our nature fix on Salthill beach, County Galway.
4. Get quality sleep
Happiness and good quality sleep are intimately connected as we already discussed in our previous blog "How sleep affects your happiness"
Following healthy sleep hygiene habits can make the difference between restlessness and restful sleep. To learn more about what sleep hygiene means and some sleep hygiene practices, we highly recommend you take a look at our blog "Sleep Hygiene: 5 Practices to improve your sleep"
If you are going through sleep difficulties that you can't quite pinpoint, it might be helpful to use a sleep log and weekly planner like in our Kocoono™ Wellness Toolkit as this will allow you to recognize the pattern and then you can intercept with an ingenious sleep plan!
As part of your sleep hygiene routine, if you’re finding it difficult to relax the body and are constantly feeling restless when you’re trying to get some shut eye then Kocoono™ can help you by applying the simple concept of deep touch pressure, you will find an improvement in your your quality sleep with our wonderful Kocoono™ Weighted Blanket. It helps to reduce those high stress levels, also known as cortisol and aids your body to relax so your mind will follow.
5. Set goals
Goal setting is an integral practice in the field of Positive Psychology. Having goals and fighting to maintain them keeps you motivated and consequently happy. The Kocoono™ Wellness Toolkit offers you a Weekly Planner to organize and motivate yourself! You might be too enthusiastic writing down more goals than you can actually achieve in the time that you initially gave yourself. Do not worry, step by step, you will do it! Just the fact that your goals are written down is a great advantage. The power of writing these down is immense and a great way to schedule and plan your week, just make sure there are some self-care goals included in there too!
6. Write down your accomplishments
Appreciating what you have accomplished in life is important to allow you to reflect, be thankful and also to keep motivated and pursue new goals. These can be big or small accomplishments, personal or professional. Some examples could be the first time you spoke in public, when you finished a book or when you organised a lovely party for your granny's birthday.
You can find an ideal exercise called “Winning in Life” in our Kocoono™ Wellness Toolkit that invites you to pause and appreciate what you have accomplished, thinking about where your win took place, what it was or when it was. You will feel happy by simply writing down the areas that you are winning in life and the little steps you have done to create them!
7. Bring positive energy into your home
You spend most of the time at home. Especially now that a great part of the population is working remotely. This is a huge reason to take some time and care for your home environment and make this an enjoyable space where you feel energized, comfortable and relaxed. You can simply bring positive energy into your home by opening the curtains in the morning to let the sunlight enter and restore your vitamin D, lighting scented candles or adding color by incorporating flowers. You would be surprised how many studies demonstrate the connection between flowers and health benefits in relieving our stress and anxiety.