6 Everyday Habits That Are Zapping Your Energy And Making You Unhappy
Finding yourself in a funk on the regular? These six things are known energy-zappers. Here's what to do to avoid them and get #ProjectHappy instead...
As part of our year-long #ProjectHappy campaign, to squeeze just that extra little bit of happiness into each and every day, here are STELLAR we’ve taken a look at how we can boost our moods. We’ve trialled everything from creating a belle jar of of our happy moments, taking life lessons from Queen Bey and working smarter not longer at the office, but we also thought it would be worthwhile to take a look at the habits that aren’t making us feel so good.
Turns out these six small but significant daily do’s can have the most detrimental effects…
1. Waking up to an alarm
Not surprisingly, hearing a shrieking ringer first thing in the morning triggers your body’s stress reaction, prompting the release of adrenaline and the stress hormone cortisol. The problem? That unpleasant jolt can set the tone for the rest of the day. So what’s the solution? Make like our ancestors, and wake up to natural light, of course. Or y’know, stick on Madonna’s Like A Virgin, instead. Much better than that ear-piercing alarm tone.
2. Not eating a substantial breakfast
Another habit putting you in a funk before you’ve even left the house? Not scoffing a decent brekkie. Why? It’s all down to your blood sugar levels which will dip as a consequence of not fueling up properly at the start of the day. The bad news is, once those blood sugar levels drop it can cause an emotional rollercoaster of moodiness. Do yourself a favour and pre-prepare a slow-releasing, carb and protein-rich breakfast the night before. Overnight oats will do the job perfectly.
3. Not clearing up clutter
Did you leave a stack of dishes piled up, the bed unmade and cosmetics lying all over the bathroom before you ran out the door this morning? Uh-oh, that can have major repercussions for the rest of your day. In fact a study by Princeton University found that too much clutter in your surroundings competes for your attention and causes stress. The fix? Do a one minute clean up every day. Tackle one room at a time, and ‘blitz’ clean it for 60 seconds. You’ll feel much more relaxed and happy – promise!
While recent research suggests that gossiping can be beneficial, we’re calling bullshit. Why? The feelings of guilt associated with a major bitch session certainly don’t make us feel good, and anything that doesn’t make us feel good causes a major drain on our energy. Ditto with complaining. Ditch the negativity and the bitchy comments and you’ll notice a significant shift in how you feel.
While avoiding that looming deadline or dreaded task may feel good at the time, the build up of uncompleted to-dos can be a serious drain. Add to that, waiting until the last minute to get stuff done will cause extra stress. Get it all done by starting with the the task you’re least looking forward to first, and breaking overwhelming jobs into more manageable chunks. As a bonus, the feeling of accomplishment when you’ve completed a task, makes for one helluva mood boost. Don’t delay.
6. Being glued to your phone
Constantly scrolling through your Insta feed, checking in on Facebook and replying to your WhatsApp messages? Research suggests spending even one hour a day on your smartphone can led to depression. If you reckon your usage is out of control, install a tracker like Moment to monitor your time spent on your phone. Still addicted? We’ve got advice for kicking your smartphone habit here. And if going phone-free doesn’t put a smile on your dial? We’ll bet a reduction in your data charges on your end-of-the-month bill, most certainly will.
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