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Finding Happiness When The World Is Blue
how to be happy

Blue Monday.

Thought to be the most depressing day of the year, it makes sense that the skies have opened and the world is grey. As if Mondays weren’t bad enough, eh?

And this year, apparently Blue Monday is the worst of all. Through a combination of celebrity deaths, Brexit anxiety and Donald Trump presidency fears, Dr Cliff Arnall, the expert who came up with the term, has warned there’s no making us feel better today.

Dr Arnall came up with this light-hearted formula for Blue Monday to predict the gloomiest day of the year based on factors including weather, debts, time since Christmas and motivation. And I don’t know about you but I’m feeling it today.

In somewhat happier news, The University of Sussex has said national happiness is unlikely to plummet to the depths seen on November 9 last year when Trump was elected president. But still, gazing outside at the drizzle, Blue Monday feels very real.

However, I have a way to get you out of your unhappiness-based hole, which will have you saying ‘thank you for making me happy!’. And it’s a trick I discovered by complete accident on a similarly grey day in early January.

How To Be Happy

It was a discovery I made when putting together a proposal for a client. I was writing that cringeworthy ‘about me’ section as one does, and listing my achievements to look as impressive as possible.

“Alice Judge-Talbot is an award-winning marketer with over a decade’s experience in the digital field.”

Key words jumped out at me: Woman’s Hour. Telegraph Columnist. Writing a book. Training for the Marathon. Single Mum. Breadwinner. Leader.

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Somehow, seeing all my successes listed together made me sit up a bit straighter, feel a bit prouder. Suddenly my worries and paranoia disappeared, and I went about my day with a massive confidence I hadn’t had before.

It’s SO simple, and I’ve been repeating this each and every time I wake up and feel all Blue Monday. And it works! Try it: simply sit down for five minutes and write down as many achievements, or things you’re proud of, as possible.

It was this trick I used on Saturday to chase away the meh feeling… I got my tax return finished and managed to run 5k as an added bonus. Proof of this magic!

PS: for an extra shot of happiness, can I suggest YesMum cards? One of these a day gives that extra shot of happiness. I’m a fan.

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