When things get rough, everyone knows you just have to “find a happy place.” Maybe you picture yourself on a tropical vacation, or maybe you think about climbing your favorite childhood tree. Escaping to a happy place in your mind can certainly make you feel a lot better, but it might also pose a bit of a problem if you are in a situation that necessities being mentally present.
Fortunately, happy places don’t always need to be the result of mental escape. It is possible to make a happy place rather than finding one—all it takes is filling your current surroundings with things that make you smile! The possibilities are endless when it comes to ways to do this, but here are some ideas to start with:
Fill the room with stuff you like.
This could mean decorating with photos of family and friends, a vase full of your favorite flowers, stuffed animals or your best Lego creations. Or, it could mean covering everything in your favorite color. It could even mean hanging a giant picture of bacon on the wall, because hey, why not?
Satisfy your senses.
How could you possibly be happy in a room that smells like a combination of one of your coworker’s gym shoes and another coworker’s headache-inducing perfume? It would be a challenge, that’s for sure. But you can create a happier atmosphere by finding a candle or air freshener that makes you feel all good inside and keeping it with you at all times.
Of course, satisfying your senses goes beyond just smell. Try filling your cabinets with your favorite foods, and looking for opportunities to play music that inspires your happy dance.
Leave yourself happy notes.
You can take this to the extreme, and leave “you can do it” post its on every surface of your house, or you can do a milder version and simply add a smiley face to the top of your grocery list (or a drawing of Godzilla, if that’s what does it for you). The important thing is giving yourself a little reminder to smile.
Make a mobile-friendly happy place.
Even if you don’t have a stable location that you can transform into a “happy place,” you can still bring your happy place with you. This might mean carrying around a good luck charm, adding something fun to your key chain or wearing a friendship bracelet. Or it could mean changing the background on your phone to something that makes you smile.
After all, why settle for simply imagining a happy place when you could be in a real one, instead?