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Four Ways to Bring Joy Through Play

healthy mindset joy play rise Feb 01, 2024

Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “We do not quit playing because we grow old; we grow old because we quit playing.” Age should not be a hindrance for us to keep playing. When we play we actively engage our minds and bodies. We become mindful of what we’re doing. When we play we are energized and our mood shifts to a lighter, more joyful one. We might have forgotten how to play but we can certainly bring back this nature that’s innate to us. This article by clinical psychologist Beth Kurland from Psychology Today teaches us how to bring back playfulness and therefore joy into our lives.

Play for grown-ups can come in many flavors, and we each need to listen to our own inner signals to find what brings out our playful spirit. While board games, adult recreational sports (e.g., tennis, pickleball, softball), puzzles, and online games can be a source of play and fun, there are so many other ways that adults can incorporate moments of play and playfulness into their...

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Seven Ways to Create More Joy!

In his book, Spontaneous Happiness, Dr. Andrew Weil writes about lifestyle practices that can help people achieve and maintain happy lives. His practices are designed to help people reach and maintain a state of contentment and serenity. From there, a person can still experience appropriate emotional highs and lows, but knows that he or she will soon return to a balanced state.

We love his summary of 9 lifestyle practices that will greatly benefit all who follow them, and be especially helpful to those who struggle with mild to moderate depression. 

1. Exercise
“Human bodies are designed for regular physical activity. The sedentary nature of much of modern life probably plays a significant role in the epidemic incidence of depression today. Many studies show that depressed patients who stick to a regimen of aerobic exercise improve as much as those treated with medication. Exercise also appears to prevent depression and improve mood in healthy people.  Many...

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One Surefire Way To Boost Your Mood

If you’re looking for a way to add to your joy, look no farther than spending some extra time with the relationships that matter most in your life!

Convincing evidence of this comes from Martin Seligman, a leading expert in the field of happiness research. He said, "Research has shown that daily support from those closest to us is a key factor in cultivating a positive outlook."

We’ve all experienced such a prolonged season of increased isolation over the past two years, so it’s a very inviting invitation to focus outward and deepen the relationships in our lives. 

Check out a couple other compelling reasons why investing in deep connections are vital.

Close Relationships Make Us Feel Optimistic
A study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology showed that when we have social support, our perception of challenges changes. And the social support paves a way for optimism to grow, increasing overall satisfaction with life while lowering the risk of...

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Micro-Moments of Happiness to Ward Off Depression

Happy Monday!

We wanted to kick-off the week with some goodness from our dear friend Dr. Daniel Amen. In his newest book, You, Happier: The 7 Neuroscience Secrets of Feeling Good Based on Your Brain Type he reveals how to improve your overall brain health to consistently enhance your mood and elevate your happiness. We love this excerpt on creating more micro-moments of happiness…

“The big “H”— happiness—doesn’t require major life-changing events, accomplishments, or milestones. Start finding joy in the smallest things you can: hearing a bird sing outside your window, feeling the warmth of the sun on your face when you step outside, petting your dog or cat, taking that first sip of your favorite brain healthy smoothie, or cracking open a new book.

I call these micro-moments of happiness.

Most of us gloss over these little things, searching instead for the big experiences. I want you to savor these precious times because, when your brain...

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Savoring the Good

gratitude joy positive stress Nov 16, 2020

How are you? We hope all is well in your neck of the woods! We thought with all that has been transpiring in 2020 we’d take a pause and remember all the good that is around us. This week, we want to remind ourselves and encourage you to “Savor the Good” all around us. 

Did you know, according to Harvard University and other research organizations, being more grateful for our surroundings has some amazing benefits such as:

  1. Lowering stress levels 
  2. Experiencing less depression 
  3. Being more optimistic 
  4. Feeling happier, experiencing higher levels of positive emotions and 
  5. Having greater resilience in difficult situations  

 Gratitude scientists have determined our happiness can increase exponentially by performing simple acts of “savoring”-paying attention to sights, smells and sounds when walking, hiking, golfing or even when commuting.  

Performing daily activities, like walking, in conjunction with being...

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A Deeper Look at Joy

This has been quite a unique season, with more difficult twists and turns than any of us expected. So, we thought it would be encouraging to start the week by taking a deeper look at joy from the wisdom of Kay Warren

“Happiness is completely connected to what’s happening to us on the external circumstances of our lives. But when joy is turned around with a new definition of joy, it makes all the difference as it has nothing to do with the circumstances that are happening in our lives…

This type of joy has everything to do with what I believe about God, what I believe He can do on the inside of me, and my choice then in response to what’s happening to me is to give praise back to Him.

That becomes something that’s within my control. I can’t always control what’s happening to me on the outside, but I can most definitely control my response, what I do with it, what I believe about God, what I believe he’s going to do about...

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Getting Your Joy Back

This week we thought it would be fun and timely to focus on simple strategy to get your joy back!! And for heaven’s sake, we could all use a bit more fun and joy in this season!

Looking back to the 1960’s, American singer and songwriter Chubby Checker’s number one selling song created a dance craze across the nation prompting millions to get up out of their seats and “do the twist”! If you have ever heard the song, chances are it put a smile on your face, a tap in your toes and got you dancing too. Hmmm? What if we thought of exercise in the same light? 

Most of us have been taught by health professionals to think of exercise as a discipline or something “we should do”, but rarely do we think of exercise as a joy or something “we want to do”. Here’s a “twist”, the song and message are changing. According to the U.S. Surgeon General, "Exercise is the new medicine. It will make you...

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