mental health http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/8361/all en-US 9 Reasons Alone Time Is Good For Your Soul http://www.wisebread.com/9-reasons-alone-time-is-good-for-your-soul <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-reasons-alone-time-is-good-for-your-soul" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_reading_book_000061374724.jpg" alt="Woman learning reasons alone time is good for her soul" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>My friends, family, and significant other? They are fabulous. We get along great, and I love being around them... most of the time. As a self-proclaimed introvert though, I have to admit that my alone time is just as precious to me. There are countless <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Fun-Things-Do-Yourself-35362035">fun things to do alone</a>, and while it's nice to have company, sometimes it's extremely refreshing to appreciate life from a perspective that's entirely your own.</p> <p>I recently went on a weekend getaway in Southern California with just myself, a beautiful new <a href="http://www.ford.com/cars/mustang/" target="_blank">2015 Ford Mustang</a>, and miles of open desert road. Whether it was the fresh air and warm sun or the endless hours of freedom I had at my fingertips, I came out the other end of my adventure feeling like a new person. If you're able to, take some time to yourself &mdash; whether it's just an for hour or for an entire trip &mdash; and see what it can do for you. Here are more reasons why alone time is good for your soul.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Career-Tips-Introverts-38279445">7 Totally Practical Career Tips For Office Introverts</a></p> <h2>1. Being Alone Gives You Time to Think</h2> <p>Life can be crazy sometimes &mdash; crazy good, crazy bad, or just crazy busy &mdash; and it's easy to get caught up in your hectic week or month and forget to allow yourself time to process things. Being alone gives us the time we all need to reflect on important events and to organize our feelings about the things that have happened. Without this, we can get overwhelmed with all we are trying to juggle mentally, and this can cause extra anxiety and stress.</p> <h2>2. You Can Get Creative</h2> <p>There's nothing like putting on headphones, listening to your favorite songs, and getting down to work. It doesn't matter if you're a writer, an artist, a musician, or a software engineer; we all have creative outlets and we all need to nurture them as much as we can. Being by yourself gives you the motivation and the opportunity to open your mind and explore new ideas, then put those ideas to good use.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Working-From-Home-Tips-37778375">11 of the Best Work-From-Home Hacks Ever</a></p> <h2>3. You Can Recharge</h2> <p>Being around people is both exhilarating and exhausting. It means having to constantly be alert and aware of what's going on around you and in conversations that require your full attention. Socializing at work and with friends is definitely a positive thing, but it can also be draining. When you're alone, you can use that quiet time to recharge and regroup. It's essential to do this so that when you're around people again, you feel refreshed, more energetic, and ready to interact.</p> <h2>4. You Get to Know Yourself Better</h2> <p>Spending time alone means taking your thoughts and feelings into account above anyone else's, and when you do this, you get to explore your personality in depth. The more time you get to know yourself, the more you'll find out just how awesome you are.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Career-Advice-38400406">Real People Share the Greatest Career Advice They've Ever Received</a></p> <h2>5. You Become More Independent</h2> <p>When you're alone, you don't have the option of depending on other people for their opinions, advice, or help. You call all the shots, and even though that can be scary sometimes, it also means you become more reliant on yourself &mdash; and this is a great thing. Being independent means being self-assured, so that you can bring that confidence to the table when you're with people, too.</p> <h2>6. You See and Hear Things You Wouldn't Otherwise</h2> <p>We often make idle conversation with people just to fill the silence, but when we're quiet, we can hear and see things we don't notice otherwise. We are able to appreciate the small things in life because we don't miss them when they happen, and being alone can help you pay more attention to those important moments.</p> <h2>7. You Get to Do Whatever You Want to Do</h2> <p>You don't have to make compromises with anyone on where to eat, what movie to watch, or what sights to see on a trip. You can spend all the time you'd like to doing exactly what you want to do, and while having company is sometimes welcome, going on your own private adventures can be just as exciting and fulfilling.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Things-You-Learn-Your-First-Job-38155545">13 of the Greatest Lessons We Learned at Our First Jobs</a></p> <h2>8. You're More Productive</h2> <p>It's easier to get more things accomplished when you're free from distractions &mdash; including people &mdash; and taking some time to yourself to put all your efforts into getting things checked off your to-do list can be extremely rewarding.</p> <h2>9. You Appreciate the People in Your Life</h2> <p>Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right? Taking some time away from the people in your life can help you realize how important and valuable they are to you. This break can renew your excitement for spending time with the people who you care about the most, and you will return from spending time alone happier and more enthusiastic about seeing them.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Need an excuse for more alone time? Here are nine reasons it&#039;s good for you. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com" style="border:none;"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" style="height:95px; width:300px" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Career-Tips-Introverts-38279445">7 Totally Practical Career Tips For Office Introverts</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Working-From-Home-Tips-37778375">11 of the Best Work-From-Home Hacks Ever</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Career-Advice-38400406">Real People Share the Greatest Career Advice They've Ever Received</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Things-You-Learn-Your-First-Job-38155545">13 of the Greatest Lessons We Learned at Our First Jobs</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-reasons-alone-time-is-good-for-your-soul">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-ways-you-are-causing-road-rage">16 Ways You Are Causing Road Rage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/invest-your-time-in-these-13-things-while-youre-in-your-20s">Invest Your Time in These 13 Things While You&#039;re in Your 20s</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/will-that-thing-really-change-your-life">Will That Thing Really Change Your Life?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-tips-to-avoid-watching-a-crappy-movie">7 tips to avoid watching a crappy movie.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/51-uses-for-coca-cola-the-ultimate-list">51 Uses for Coca-Cola – the Ultimate List</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Lifestyle Personal Development alone time emotional health introvert me time mental health privacy solo tips Fri, 06 Nov 2015 09:15:11 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1577435 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Terrible Things Science Says You Do to Your Mind Everyday http://www.wisebread.com/5-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-mind-everyday <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-mind-everyday" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_napping_desk_000038514712.jpg" alt="Woman doing terrible things science says she does to her mind" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Are you tired of your brain working at its optimal level every day? Are you <em>too</em> emotionally balanced? Are you sick to death of your good memory? If you are one of those people who suffer from having<em> too much</em> personal bandwidth, good news: You can stop having full cognitive function today! Here are five <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-kids">scientifically proven</a> ways to destroy brain function that anyone can do.</p> <h2>1. Sleep Deprivation</h2> <p>Why are you sleeping eight hours when you can sleep fewer? Road rage and erratic driving due to sleep deprivation will make your morning commute much more interesting.</p> <p>Also, work is so boring, so you might as well sleep through part of your day at the office or in the cockpit. Hard decisions build character, so why not make even the easiest choices into Sophie's Choices just by waking up way earlier than you should? If you are paying for college, then it should be your choice whether or not to learn anything new or remember anything old. Why bother with memorizing anything when smartphones exist?</p> <p>Less sleep means more time for&hellip;other things that damage long and short-term memory. The Center for Disease Control calls insufficient sleep a <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/features/dssleep/">public health epidemic</a>, reporting that 30% of American adults sleep fewer than six hours every day.</p> <h2>2. Multitasking</h2> <p>Do you know what scientists call people who don't multitask? Productive thinkers. I mean who among us doesn't love bragging about our multitasking abilities! Why? Because it gives us street cred with all the OG masters of time slippage. Obviously.</p> <p>Pretty much every scientific study shows that&nbsp;<a href="http://www.umich.edu/~bcalab/documents/MeyerKieras1997a.pdf">multitasking reduces efficiency</a> and performance because the human brain lacks the processing power to do more than one thing at a time. When you multitask, you actually do each task more slowly than if you'd done them one at a time. But why would anyone want to do one thing really well, when you could do four things poorly all at once? More is more after all.</p> <p>About 98% of the population, regardless of their (inefficient and low-performance) magical thinking, is physically incapable of multitasking. Which means that the 2% of the population who can actually multitask exist mainly to make all others believe that they are part of this outlier super-tasker group.</p> <p>Heavy multitaskers, with all their practice at doing too many things at once, are actually the&nbsp;<a href="http://news.stanford.edu/news/2009/august24/multitask-research-study-082409.html">worst at organized thinking</a>.</p> <p>In addition to slowing down workflow, multitasking <a href="http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2012/08/how-do-frequent-emails-and-texts-affect-produ/">lowers IQ</a> by as much as 15 points for men, the equivalent of dropping cognitive capacity from that of a Harvard MBA to an eight-year-old child. So the next time you get behind at work, you should just get your third grader to help you pick up the slack. Your boss will probably never notice. Interestingly, that old gendered argument that women are better multitaskers than men is validated by this study. Multitasking only makes women dumber by five IQ points, which is equivalent to going to work stoned. Luckily, your cognitive loss from multitasking will not show up on a urine test, however scientists have created a test that you can take that measures&nbsp;<a href="http://psych.newcastle.edu.au/~ae273/Gatekeeper_XOR/">multitasking-induced stupidity</a>.</p> <h2>3. Stress</h2> <p>Why settle for temporary cognitive dysfunction when you can shrink key parts of your brain permanently? Several studies have now linked stress with an increased <a href="http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0165017304001730">risk of Alzheimer's disease</a> and accelerated memory loss with aging. This is great news for poor people who live with constant, crushing stress. Why worry about planning for the future if you know you'll lose your mind before you get there?</p> <h2>4. Rumination</h2> <p>As someone who enjoys Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, I can tell you from personal experience that rumination is a fast and easy method of making yourself miserable. For newbies to repetitive negative thinking, rumination is the practice of dwelling on negative experiences or thoughts. For example, a negative thought might be &quot;why am I so depressed about my boyfriend multitasking with that girl at the muffin shop?&quot;</p> <p>In a study of San Franciscans who had lived through the 1989 earthquake, Yale University psychologist Susan Nolen-Hoeksema, PhD found that self-described ruminators had more <a href="http://www.apa.org/monitor/nov05/cycle.aspx">symptoms of depression</a> and post-traumatic stress disorder from the experience, than non-ruminators. Practice makes perfect! The more you ruminate, the easier it is to perpetuate low confidence and uncertainty.</p> <h2>5. Constant Entertainment</h2> <p>Do you remember what it was like before you could fill every spare moment with information? For example, do you remember what it was like to stand in a line at the post office without the ability to play Words With Friends, or how boring the gym was before they installed televisions on the treadmills? Life was super dull. But do you remember ever feeling as awesomely overwhelmed by data as you do now?</p> <p>Marc G. Berman, a neuroscientist at the University of Michigan, discovered that people learned significantly better after a walk in nature versus a walk in an urban environment. His team posits that although visual noise is stimulating, our now constant access to entertainment is actually causing <a href="http://pss.sagepub.com/content/19/12/1207.abstract">brain fatigue</a>. A study by scientists at the University of California, San Francisco found that when the brain is constantly stimulated, <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19525943">the learning process is prevented</a>. Just like computers take time to download information, the brain actually needs downtime to process information and store it as a memory.</p> <p>Oh pshaw! I've lost entire verb tenses in Italian in my quest for a better car commute. Who needs the subjunctive mood when one can binge listen to the entire podcast of <em>Serial</em>?</p> <p><em>Have you taken steps to stop your own cognitive deficit? If so, please share your methods of avoiding brain damage with your fellow Wise Bread readers in the comments section!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-mind-everyday">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-your-smartphone-is-hurting-your-career">7 Ways Your Smartphone Is Hurting Your Career</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-reasons-you-cant-focus-and-how-to-fix-it-now">12 Reasons You Can&#039;t Focus — And How to Fix It Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-ways-to-reduce-workplace-stress">10 Frugal Ways to Reduce Workplace Stress</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-7-exercises-are-scientifically-proven-to-increase-happiness">These 7 Exercises Are Scientifically Proven to Increase Happiness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-body-every-day">9 Terrible Things Science Says You Do to Your Body Every Day</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty brain depression distractions mental health multitasking sleep deprivation stress Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:00:15 +0000 Max Wong 1507396 at http://www.wisebread.com Wise Bread Reloaded: Is Eating More Produce the Secret to Happiness and Wellbeing? http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-is-eating-more-produce-the-secret-to-happiness-and-wellbeing <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/wise-bread-reloaded-is-eating-more-produce-the-secret-to-happiness-and-wellbeing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman-eating-fruit-salad-467006431-small.jpg" alt="woman eating fruit salad" title="woman eating fruit salad" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>An apple a day keeps the psychiatrist away?</p> <p>That's what medical researchers in the UK have learned.</p> <p>In a recent survey of 14,000 individuals, <a href="http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140923085945.htm">33.5% of participants with &quot;good mental wellbeing&quot;</a> consumed five or more servings of fruits and vegetables per day. In contrast, only 6.8% of participants with good mental wellbeing consumed less than one serving of fruits or vegetables per day. Other health-related behaviors such as alcohol intake and obesity were looked at, but only smoking and fruit and vegetable consumption were the &quot;behaviors most consistently associated with both low and high mental wellbeing.&quot;</p> <p>Getting your daily five (or more!) servings has obvious benefits for your physical health. And now it may be a boost to mental health, too.</p> <p>Need some ideas to help you get more fruits and vege into your body and your brain? Let's see what Wise Bread's writers have suggested over the years.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-simple-recipes-for-25-delicious-veggies?ref=classicwb">25 Delicious Recipes for 25 Delicious Veggies</a> &mdash; From Artichokes to Zucchini, Ashley Marcin shares one favorite recipe for each of her 25 favorite vegetables.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-use-frozen-mixed-vegetables?ref=classicwb">25 Ways to Use Frozen Mixed Vegetables</a> &mdash; Frozen vegetables are a great frugal choice &mdash; almost as nutritious as fresh, often way cheaper, and always convenient. Rebecca Lieb shares a long list of easy, delicious recipes.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-produce-workers-guide-to-choosing-fruits-and-vegetables?ref=classicwb">The Produce Worker's Guide to Choosing Fruits and Vegetables</a> &mdash; You're sold on the idea of getting more fruits and vegetables, but you're unsure about how to choose the freshest, most flavorful ones from the bin. No problem. Ashley Watson used to be a produce stocker at her local grocery, and she learned a lot about ripe produce.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-use-of-sub-par-produce?ref=classicwb">7 Ways to Use Subpar Produce</a> &mdash; Linsey Knerl shows you what to do with a mushy banana or some wilted celery or a flat of overripe strawberries.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fridge-or-counter-where-to-store-fruit-for-best-flavor?ref=classicwb">Fridge or Counter: Where to Store Fresh Fruit for Best Flavor </a>&mdash; Now that you have it home, where do you store it? Ashley Marcin tells you.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-incredible-but-true-facts-about-eating-fruits-and-vegetables?ref=classicwb">10 Incredible But True Facts About Eating Fruits and Vegetables</a> &mdash; Finally, Beth Buczynski uncovers 10 more astounding facts about fruits and veggies, giving you even more reason to fill your cart in the produce section.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lars-peterson">Lars Peterson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-is-eating-more-produce-the-secret-to-happiness-and-wellbeing">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-produce-workers-guide-to-choosing-fruits-and-vegetables">The Produce Worker&#039;s Guide to Choosing Fruits and Vegetables</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fresh-fruits-and-vegetables-by-the-month">Fresh Fruits and Vegetables, By the Month</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-use-of-sub-par-produce">7 Ways to Make Use of Sub-Par Produce</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buy-this-not-that-at-the-farmers-market">Buy This — Not That — at the Farmer&#039;s Market</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-delicious-ways-to-prepare-a-humble-head-of-cabbage">15 Delicious Ways to Prepare a Humble Head of Cabbage</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink brain food fruit happiness mental health produce vegetables Sat, 27 Sep 2014 11:00:06 +0000 Lars Peterson 1222771 at http://www.wisebread.com Big List of Things to be Happy About http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-things-to-be-happy-about <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/big-list-of-things-to-be-happy-about" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_with_bear.jpg" alt="Happy man with a teddy bear" title="Happy man with a teddy bear" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I'm writing this post from the Caribbean island of Grenada, where I'm house-sitting for three months. Sounds pretty good, huh? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/housesit-on-your-next-vacation">Housesit on Your Next Vacation</a>)</p> <p>Well, I've just been dealt a heavy blow. My &ldquo;partner&rdquo; &mdash; who was supposed to join me here shortly &mdash; announced that he's been sleeping with another woman, and....drum roll, please....she's pregnant.</p> <p>So my plans of spending the next three months in romantic coupled bliss on a tropical island are out the window. And to make matters worse, I'm really sick &mdash; an illness so incapacitating that I can only sit up for bouts of 10 minutes before having to lie down again. Being sick like this is a very scary way to be when you're alone &mdash; and a stark reminder of that aloneness.</p> <p>And, ironically, I've agreed to write a post on things to be happy about.</p> <p>It's time to reframe my experience. It would be stating the obvious to point out that I'm nursing my wounds (physical and emotional) on a Caribbean island, where I have almost no overhead expenses. This is something to be happy about. There are some engaging and friendly locals who live and work on the property, lending me a sense of companionship and security. And heck &mdash; I've found a way to travel the world full-time in a financially sustainable way; something I've been doing for the last five years.</p> <p>To say &ldquo;things could be worse&rdquo; is an understatement.</p> <h2>Don't Wallow &mdash; Reframe&nbsp;Your Thinking</h2> <p>When times are tough, it's difficult to see the forest for the trees. Everything becomes dire and full of despair.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">To a point, I think it's healthy to explore these darker moments, because they lead to incredible growth experiences. But to linger in the depression &mdash; to wallow in self-loathing and doubt &mdash; is a dangerous road to go down. And you usually end up pushing away the people who are trying to help you in the process.</p> <p>Instead, wallow &mdash; but only for a while. Then, reframe. After a period of self-care and nurturing kindness, it's time to pull yourself off of what can be a slippery slope towards bad habits and depression. Consider how you can <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/feeling-stuck-100-ways-to-change-your-life">change your life</a> if you're feeling stuck. Cut out some pictures and dream big with a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/vision-boards-dream-big-play-with-pictures-and-watch-your-life-change">vision board</a>. And surround yourself with people who love you and can support you. Don't push them away, as is often the knee-jerk response. It's in getting each other through dark moments in life that friendships deepen.</p> <p>Here's a random list of things to be happy about. Don't allow a potential lack of some of these items in your life to get you down; instead do what I did in coming up with this list &mdash; look at the world around you through a baby's eyes. You'll be amazed at what you observe, and how simple the root of happiness can be.</p> <h2>Things to Be Happy About</h2> <ol> <li>The sound of an ice cream truck.</li> <li>Sun showers.</li> <li>Birds chirping.</li> <li>Gentle ocean waves.</li> <li>That whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger.</li> <li>The smell of freshly baked bread.</li> <li>Colorful flowers.</li> <li>Being inside when it's raining. Especially in bed, where you can snuggle up and enjoy the fact that you're dry.</li> <li>Being outside in a hot and refreshing rain, when you don't care about getting wet.</li> <li>The sound of children laughing.</li> <li>Fresh, delicious food.</li> <li>Electricity.</li> <li>Clean water.</li> <li>The sound of trees rustling in the wind.</li> <li>The feeling you get when somebody smiles at you.</li> <li>A mother's hug.</li> <li>Cookies, still warm out of the oven.</li> <li>A parent saying &ldquo;I'm proud of you.&rdquo;</li> <li>Landing a new job.</li> <li>Waking up to a fresh snow &mdash; and knowing it's Saturday so you don't have to shovel!</li> <li>Laughing so hard you cry.</li> <li>The feeling of comfort when a pet snuggles up to you after a long hard day.</li> <li>Epic sunsets.</li> <li>The excitement of going somewhere new.</li> <li>A great cup of coffee or tea (especially on a cold morning).</li> <li>Getting absorbed in a really good book.</li> <li>Cooking a meal that is so good it surprises even you.</li> <li>Hosting a party that goes off like a charm.</li> <li>Warm clothing in cold weather.</li> <li>Cool clothing in warm weather.</li> <li>Freedom of rights.</li> <li>A mug of frothy hot chocolate after coming in from the cold.</li> <li>Music that makes you want to dance.</li> <li>The thrill of new love.</li> <li>Sleeping in.</li> </ol> <p>To round out the list, here are a few things the Twitter and Facebook users I asked like to be happy about:</p> <ol> <li value="36">How about being alive! The sun, the wind, the moon. Coffee, gelato, pineapple. Kissing, hugging, crying.</li> <li>Being healthy enough to travel.</li> <li>Smoke-free bars, clubs, and restaurants.</li> <li>Mismatched wool socks and sandals!</li> <li>Good friends and fond memories.</li> <li>Double rainbows and changing fall colors.</li> <li>Bubble wrap and being able to be you.</li> <li>The word &quot;bellybutton.&quot; I dunno...it just always makes me laugh saying it.</li> <li>Being in the present moment.</li> <li>Spandex, kittens, rude people falling down, salmon with dill, celebrity nipple slips, Wolf Blitzer lawn gnomes, Darth Vader Pez dispensers, the Dali Llama, puppy kisses, and the fact that they are filming season two of <em>Game of Thrones</em>.</li> <li>Puppies first opening their eyes and looking in wonder at their world.</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-simple-rules-of-excellent-houseguest-etiquette">Friends coming to visit</a>.</li> <li>That you are young and your knees and hips still work!</li> <li>You're still alive, nothing is broken, and you aren't in jail...so anything is possible.</li> </ol> <p>There. I don't know about you, but I actually feel a bit better. It's nice to reframe a tragedy (or tragic frame of mind) into something you just might eventually be able to be happy about.</p> <p><em>This is a working list. Got anything to add? </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-things-to-be-happy-about">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-feel-better-fast">25 Ways to Feel Better Fast</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-be-a-better-person-today">25 Ways to Be a Better Person Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/100-small-things-that-can-bring-you-joy">100 Small Things That Can Bring You Joy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-today-to-be-happy">10 Things You Can Do Today to Be Happy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-reasons-alone-time-is-good-for-your-soul">9 Reasons Alone Time Is Good For Your Soul</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development happiness mental health overcoming challenges Fri, 28 Oct 2011 10:36:17 +0000 Nora Dunn 764326 at http://www.wisebread.com Frugal Tip: Do Not Spend When You Are Sad http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-tip-do-not-spend-when-you-are-sad <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/frugal-tip-do-not-spend-when-you-are-sad" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/deprofundis.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="293" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Today I read an <a href="http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080208/sadness_spending.html">eye opening article</a> about the effect known as &quot;misery is not miserly&quot;. Basically, a study was conducted on two groups of people. One group was shown a sad video about the death of a boy&#39;s mentor while the other was shown a random and emotionally neutral video about the Great Barrier Reef. Then each person was given $10 and asked to put an offer on a bottle of water. The group that was shown the sad video offered $2.11 on average, while the other group offered only $0.56 on average. Even though the first group offered nearly four times than that of the second group, they say that the video had no bearings on their decision. Thus the researchers say it is a phenomenon that happens without awareness, and that is frightening.</p> <p>I can see how this effect can trap people into a vicious cycle of spending. When people are in debt they can be dragged down emotionally by all the bills they have to pay, and if they spend more to compensate for their emotions then they will pile on more debt. More debt means more frustration and sadness, and the expensive toys get charged once again. For these people, they really need to get rid of their emotions and focus on reducing their debt. Once they eliminate the root of their depression, they may naturally stop their overspending. </p> <p>Personally, when I am sad I tend to spend more on food, and eat a lot more than I should. I also know a friend who would buy clothes that&#39;s much more expensive than what she usually wears when she is feeling down. After these frivolous purchases there is always a bit of pleasure, and then guilt soon follows. Now that I am aware that sadness induces extravagance, I can only hope that I will stop myself from spending money when I need a little pick me up. If I absolutely need to spend money I may need to let someone else buy the item for me. </p> <p>This brings up another random thought, are funeral homes aware of this effect and do they take advantage of it? </p> <p> How about you? Do you tend to spend more when you are sad and are you aware of it? </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/xin-lu">Xin Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-tip-do-not-spend-when-you-are-sad">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-is-gasoline-so-cheap-a-cost-comparison-of-40-common-household-liquids">Why is Gasoline So Cheap? A Cost Comparison of 40 Common Household Liquids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-cant-save-if-you-dont-try">You Can’t Save if You Don’t Try</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-not-buy-something-just-because-you-can-afford-it">Do not buy something just because you can afford it</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-get-your-toiletries-for-cheap-or-even-free">6 Ways to Get your Toiletries for Cheap or Even Free!</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Frugal Living Health and Beauty Shopping frugality mental health moods psychology sadness saving shopping spending Fri, 08 Feb 2008 08:10:06 +0000 Xin Lu 1763 at http://www.wisebread.com