Sunday, January 20, 2013

Everybody wants more happiness, right?

Well, there are several simple ways to boost your feelings of happiness. Most of these involve increasing production of the hormone serotonin. (This is the "feel good" hormone.) Everyone is under stress, no matter what they do for a living. However, writers face a different set of challenges. For one thing, writing is by its nature a very lonely profession. We spend countless hours alone with our computers. No matter how much you might be in love with your PC, it can't talk back and the closest it comes to showing affection is not contracting a virus. LOL

With that in mind, here are a few helpful tips to increase your level of happiness.

Eat oatmeal for breakfast. One cup of oatmeal contains 94 mg. of tryptophan, an essential building block of serotonin. Plus, if you add a banana to the mix, you get extra vitamin B6 a nutrient that helps convert tryptophan to serotonin. Eating this first thing in the morning helps you get off to a "feel good" start.

Snack on carbs. Yes, I used the "c" word. Ha. Ha. Ha. Eating a snack of carbohydrates alone speeds up the production of serotonin within 20 minutes. Don't grab a doughnut though. Go for fruit, veggies, and whole grain crackers. That way you can do something good for yourself and not feel guilty. Or, if it's been a really crap day, maybe go for the doughnut.

Get more vitamin D. Vitamin D is relatively cheap and can be purchased at most any supermarket. Taking this supplement daily can boost your serotonin levels by as much as 26%.

Read a book. This is a great way to keep your stress levels low. If you can only spend one hour a day reading something you enjoy, it will do wonders.

Drink hot chocolate. The combination of calcium and antioxidants in hot cocoa boosts your brain's serotonin output for up to seven hours. Indulging in this treat can make you calmer and happier, plus sleep sounder if you have this before bedtime.

Using these stress busting tips can decrease your chances of headaches, indigestion, joint pain, and even weight gain.

Now, doesn't that sound relaxing?

If you're wondering how I know all this, I researched it. Thoroughly. Now that's just one less stressful thing you have to worry about. You can just collect the information and move on with your busy life. :)

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