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Quick & Easy Happiness Boosters for Family Caregivers

Oct 8, 2020

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From Happy Healthy Caregiver

Caregiving can be emotionally and physically draining. Managing the crisis of the day while juggling your life can be exhausting and time to ourselves is a precious gift.

Below are little ‘happiness boosters’ you can incorporate into your busy day. Think of these happiness boosters like you would Pac-Man’s Power Pellets. Gobbling the power pellet gives your Pac-Man the temporary ability to consume the ghosts and earn bonus points. Similarly, the happiness boost is temporary and will wear off but as you live your day there can be other happiness boosters sprinkled in the path ahead.

pacman screen

Happiness Booster #1 – Do Not Disturb

When you are sleeping, put your phone on the ‘do not disturb’ setting. On my iPhone, I can turn this one by swiping up from the bottom on my screen and selecting the ‘moon’ icon.

do not disturb iphone

When ‘do not disturb’ is enabled on your phone, calls and alerts that arrive while your phone is locked will be silenced. You can establish whose calls can get through the ‘do not disturb’ feature in your phone settings. For example, any of the contacts I have in my ‘Favorites’ will not be silenced. I also have the setting enabled that allows calls to get through if I get a second call from the same number within 3 minutes. I love this setting it allows peace and peace of mind.

Happiness Booster #2 – Gratitude Text

grateful emoji

Randomly think of something you are thankful for and send a gratitude text.

Maybe a friend this week said or did something that filled your happiness bucket. Or, maybe someone inspired you in some small way or routinely greets you with a smile. To let them know how they impacted your life, pop off a short text to them with a cute emoji to say ‘thanks’ or ‘I’m grateful you are in my life’.

Happiness Booster #3 – Funny Filters

On both Instagram and Snap Chat app you can have simple fun with filters.

On Instagram, swipe right to access your story view. Turn the camera toward you with the circular arrow icon. Select the little face with the stars icon at the bottom. Select from the available filters and hit the middle button to snap a picture or hold it down for video. You can share these in your Instagram story or through a private message OR you can save your filtered fun and save it to your camera roll.

For Snapchat, turn the camera at yourself like you are taking a selfie, press and hold down on the reflection of your face (not a button…press and hold your face until the filter options appear), then sample all the crazy face filters. Some add ears, music, or change your voice. You are bound to giggle while playing with these. Some of them are meant to do with a friend who is sitting beside you. Snap the image or record the short video clip. You can send them in Snap Chat to friends or family or save them to your photos to include in a text.

Happiness Booster #4 – Special Passwords

You have to have a digital password for everything these days. I have to type a password into my computer each time I return to my desk to unlock it. Countless times a day, I enter in passwords to access applications and websites. For me, generating a happiness booster password is part of the fun.

I think of my happy places, things that make me smile, or words that inspire me and I create a secure password from these words by adding in punctuation symbols or swapping the number three for the letter E or a zero for the letter O.

Some ideas…

Sh1n30n! (Shine On!)

Tak3aBr3ath3 (Take a Breathe)

S3lfCar318! (Self Care 18!)

UR3nough (You are enough)

Par15Franc3 (Paris France)

Happiness Booster #5 – Just Breathe

Be on a quest to identify the smells that make you happy and then insert those smells into your day.

Not sure what scents you love the most?

Spend a few minutes on your next shopping excursion in Bath & Body Works to sniff the tester bottles. Peppermint is a scent I now love. I purchased an aromatherapy mister and add a few drops of essential oils into my diffuser nightly. The smell of peppermint while I’m reading to help me drift off into a happier slumber is delightful.

Another scent I love is vanilla. I often use a couple drops of vanilla extract in my morning coffee. Before I dispense the drops…I sniff the bottle!

Happiness Booster #6 – Ringtones & Alerts

Phones are like our third hand. We take them everywhere and they ring and buzz often. Is there a song that you could add to your ringtone to make you smile?

My husband has the ‘Halloween’ movie theme ring when our kids call him. I smile every time I hear it. When I receive a text, I hear a soda or beer can opening. It’s a unique sound to tell me it’s my text but it also makes me happy.

Happiness Booster #7 – Tiny Treasures

Sprinkle little tokens or reminders around you living areas that make you happy.

For example, I have a bluebird charm I bought at a local art gallery hanging from my car’s rear-view mirror. Bluebirds are the symbol of happiness.

In my travel jewelry bag that I take to the gym with me, I have a small shell I picked up on one of my Sister Weekend trips. Each time I dump the jewelry in my hand, I see it. Instant happiness.

happy symbol

Happiness Booster #8 – Happiness 911 Song

Music is a mood booster. Identify your Happiness 911 song. It’s the song you’ll play when you need a mood shift. The one  you can blast in your car and sing at the top of your lungs.

Need some ideas to consider? Check out the Happy Healthy Caregiver or the Caregiver Anthem playlists on Spotify

Happiness Booster #9 – Gratitude Game

Think of something you see, hear or do multiple times a day. For example, sit at a red light, hear a horn beep, turn a light on or off, or use the bathroom.

Then, think of one thing you are grateful for.

It’s a game you can play by yourself and you’ll always win.

Happiness Booster #10 – Wardrobe Wonders

A friend at work has an Instagram account where she has had some inexpensive fun with her wardrobe. She finds outfit ideas on Pinterest and she adapts them using pieces from her own wardrobe. She calls it ‘Pinned It Spinned It or #PinnedItSpinnedIt.

It’s a fun way to get out of the daily grind of doing the same ole same ole (and it may just help get you out of those yoga pants).

Here’s an example of one of Jamie’s posts where she plans out the week so that others can play along with her. Then each day you see her version of the outfit in her Instagram feed. Have fun!

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