Happy June, everyone! I can’t believe my Happiness Project is about to hit the halfway mark. In the past five months, I’ve tried out a lot of new happiness practices to impact different areas of my life — and I’m proud to share that many of those have stuck! 2019 hasn’t been the easiest year, so incorporating these principles in my life has really been a game changer.
We’ll get more into the ways that this experiment has impacted my daily life in our June recap, but to read up on previous months, you can click to learn about how I boosted physical wellness, created outer order through decluttering, practiced mindfulness, and slowed down and lightened up.
My theme for the month of May was Make Time For Friends. To do this, I incorporated the following:
- Practice “reverse gossip.”
- Remember birthdays.
- Show up.
- Be generous.
- Bring people together.
So how did I do?
As an introvert who works in a very outward-facing job, I wasn’t sure how this one was going to go. I always preach the importance of taking the necessary time for yourself as an introvert for your own self-care, and I worried that this theme would take away that time I needed to recharge, especially at a time when I was still feeling some major burnout.
However, it turned out that this wasn’t the case at all. In fact, I absolutely loved this month! Back in college, I loved hosting parties (especially theme parties) and bringing people together, and I’ve missed that side of myself for a long time. The parties stopped after a bad relationship and some of my closest friends moved out of state, but I knew that May would be the perfect time to try again.
Early in the month, I hosted my very first Kentucky Derby Party, complete with mint juleps, themed decorations, and lots of party food. It was a small group, since the races competed with Cinco de Mayo and graduation ceremonies, but we had a blast rooting for our horses and getting together. Later in the month, I also hosted a baby shower for a close friend at work, and again enjoyed both the planning and the camaraderie.
I did my best to show up. Even on days when I felt depleted, if I had already made a commitment, I made the best of it and took care to enjoy the moment. Having a fuller social calendar gave me an even greater focus on self-care and taking time to recharge when I took time to myself, and I finally felt a greater sense of balance this month.
Practicing reverse gossip, or going out of my way to (genuinely) speak positively about others was also helpful for me, and caused me to readjust my focus in more stressful times. I’d like to continue working on this particular aspect of happiness moving into the rest of the year.
June’s focus is to learn constantly, which is a tenet of the Athena Women’s Leadership program I was a part of in 2017. To do this, I’ll incorporate the following:
- Dedicate time to writing.
- Work on learning a new technology.
- Find places in the day to squeeze in an extra 15 minutes.
- Work on an original piece.
- Enjoy now.
What goals are you working toward? Are you doing a happiness project? Sound off in the comments below!