Combining Two Tips to Feel Even Better – Smiling & Happy Memories

 In Better Life

I’m always on the lookout for fast and easy tricks to shift our thinking and to feel better. So I’m excited to share something new that combines two of my favorites; a fake smile and happy memory. I first learned about this approach during a meditation practice my awesome yoga instructor, Tatsiana O’Neil, led after class. I absolutely loved it so I wanted to tell you about it. Here’s how it works.

  1. Get into a comfortable sitting position. You can lie down if you know you won’t fall asleep.
  2. Smile and make sure you are activating the muscles at the edges and under your eyes like in a real smile. It can be a small smile with a slight curve to your lips, but make sure you’re “crinkling” your eyes.
  3. Close your eyes or let your gaze drop to the floor if you’re sitting. Keep those eye muscles engaged!
  4. Here’s the fun part! Think of memories that make you smile. It could be a person, pet, place, situation, or even a movie scene.
  5. Keep the smile going and keep focusing on different memories that make you feel good or stick to one if you can make it last for at least five minutes.

You can practice this tip for as little as five minutes or much longer if you’d like.

When I have the “fake” smile, I find I more easily remember happy times, and then the good memories make it easier to smile, so they reinforce each other. When I’m done, I feel genuinely better.

You can do this any time throughout your day. Try it before you get out of bed in the morning or before you go to sleep. Give it a try at lunchtime or after work. I would love to hear what you think!

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