Having purposeful fun every day makes us happier, more joyful, and more productive. It also helps us to have better relationships with our beloved ones, friends, and colleagues. Fun and pleasure can be the best investment in our health and well-being.
I experienced mild depression in my younger ages. Living with depression is not fun. Learning to schedule and prioritize fun in my life helped me beat my depression, made me happier, and gave me a joyful life. I am grateful for these opportunities. I share my unique experience and life hacks in this article.
Intentional fun is essential because we are hard-wired to experiencing negative emotions. This wiring serves the purpose of survival. Our several brain regions compete with others, and most of the time, the anxious part wins. I shared my experience with this anxious and worrying part in this article titled How To Deal With Amygdala Hijacks.
In this article, I want to focus on five simple and powerful fun activities that helped me beat my depression. Pleasure and joy from these activities were the most significant factors for getting rid of mild depression and having a joyful and satisfying life.
1 - Daily chores
This may sound ironic and paradoxical to some of us but turning chores into fun and pleasure significantly impacted my happiness.
I give you three simple examples from my experience. I perform these three activities every day at least twice. I brush my teeth twice, wash the dishes at least once, and declutter my house once.
Brushing our teeth may seem a chore, but to me, it is when fun. I made a deliberate decision that whenever I brush my teeth, I'd feel in the moment.
Every stroke of the brush on my teeth gave me pleasure. I visualize healthy and shiny teeth. This inspired me because, in my younger years, I suffered a lot from dental pain. I shared my experience in this article titled I Prevented Gum Disease With A Simple Hack.
Washing the dishes is another chore, but I love it. I don't use dishwashing machine even though we have one. Washing the dirty dishes keep me at the moment. Living at the moment is a secret to joy and happiness. Gratitude accelerates this joy.
When washing the dishes, I only focus on cleaning grease. Each plate I clean give me tiny dopamine spikes. When I cleaned several dishes, my brain gets noticeable dopamine. This rewarding hormone, released when we achieve something, is critical for our happiness.
Removing clutter is another fun activity for me. I find an opportunity every day to get rid of the clutter in my house. Decluttering my environment gives me instant dopamine rush.
2 - Exercise with music
I turned to exercise into the fun. I only perform joyful exercises as discussed in this article titled ADD
What is unique about my joyful exercise is adding uplifting music to my workouts. I noticed that exercising with music increased my motivation. It helped me work out longer and more effectively.
Music and exercise help us activate different brain regions. Both music and movement create happiness hormones. It is a double whammy.
I schedule and prioritize my workouts with music. Setting the alarm for every hour and spending three to five minutes stretching, jumping on a trampoline, and a few pushups instantly increased my mood and enhance my motivation.
By scheduling my fun workouts with music, I produce better and stay away from depressive moods. Scheduling and prioritizing fun workouts were critical to beat my mild depression.
3 - Regular sunlight exposure
There is something magical in sunlight. Even though the excessive sun can cause harmful effects, regular sun exposure brought many benefits to me. Vitamin D and nitric acid formation on my skin gave me extra joy.
When I fixed my vitamin D deficiency, I felt like a new person. After optimizing my Vitamin D levels, many other blood markers also improved.
Spending 10 to 15 minutes, exposing my body to the sun improves my mood instantly. Sunlight is like a fun starting pill for me. I always use summer days to get sun exposure.
Even in winter, I watch out the sun appear. As soon as I see the sun shining, I stop my work and take a break. Even a few minutes of sunlight did help me improve my mood quickly.
I made sunlight a priority contributing to my happiness.
4 - Walking on the grass
This point may sound unusual to you, but I reaped many benefits on a barefoot walk on the grass. I shared my experience in this article titled ADD
I made barefoot walk as one of my daily rituals; at least 10 minutes in our garden during the day or night. In summers, I love barefoot walk on sandy beaches.
The most convincing argument for the benefit of walking on the sand or grass was related to electrons which can be transferred from our bodies. Negatively charged electrons from our body can be absorbed or neutralized by the earth.
The most significant benefit for me was to neutralize the negative electrons in my body. I shared my experience in an article titled Why I Enjoy Barefoot Walking So Much.
5 - Purposeful smile and laughter
As the adage says, laughter is the best medicine. I believe in this. Laughter is an indication that we are happy and joyful. I learned to smile and laugh intentionally.
Starting with a smile, I find ways to laugh at things. There is always a humorous part of anything. Looking at things with unique and fresh eyes can help us learn to laugh quickly.
I understand that not everyone may have the same creativity, but using the products of laughter can also help. I used to schedule to watch funny videos for five minutes every day. Those funny videos enabled me to smile and laugh quickly.
Learning not to take me too seriously was a significant happiness investment. Humour was the best skill an practice that contributed to my health and well-being. It served as an excellent stress reduction tool for me.
Unless we schedule and prioritize fun, it can be challenging to have a joyful and happy life. There are of course other factors for happiness but intentional fun, pleasure, and joy are the most motivating factors for happiness, productivity and success.
I don't undermine the impact and implications of clinical depression. This debilitating experience requires certainly professional advice and intervention. However, I managed my mild depression with scheduled and prioritized joy and happiness, without using medication.
Investing our time by spending a few minutes intentionally on fun activities can do wonders for many of us. It is worth the effort and time.
Thank you for reading my perspectives.