10 reasons to smile – summer edition

10 reasons to smile – summer edition

10 reasons to smile – summer edition

Why should I look for reasons to smile?

You know those moments when you notice something that makes you immediately smile or even laugh out loud?  That one little moment can change the entire course of your day…or, at very least, improve your mood for the rest of the day.

 

In fact, there’s actually science behind it!  I’m not much of a “sciencey” person (Translation: Do your own research about this little sciencey bit!  Here is a good place to start.)  But every now and then, I find something that’s just too interesting to ignore.

 

Did you know that when you smile, real or fake, your body releases endorphins?  Those happy little chemicals in your body can reduce stress and will almost definitely improve your mood.  (Just like that classic quote from Legally Blonde.)

 

And THAT is exactly why we should actively look for things to smile about.  If you’re having a rough day, take a minute to pay attention to what you see, hear, smell, and feel and I bet you’ll find something to put a smile on your face.

10 reasons to smile
things to smile about
reasons to smile this summer

10 reasons to smile – summer edition

It can be pretty easy to find something to smile about in the summer, but if you need a little reminder, here is a quick little list of happy little summertime things.

1. The smell of fresh-cut grass

Yes, it might make you sneeze, but the smell of fresh-cut grass always reminds me of childhood summers.  Playing in the backyard, catching lightning bugs, days with no school and lots of fun!

 

2. Birds & bugs singing

The sound of birds singing at sunrise and cicadas singing at sunset….It’s just such a summery noise!

 

 

3. Iced coffee

I’ll be the first to admit that summer isn’t my favorite of the four seasons.  Hot weather and I do not get along.  But there is a big perk: Iced Coffee!  I love my morning coffee, but it’s even better when it’s iced!

 

 

4. Long days

It’s always amazed me how big the difference is between summer and winter daylight.  They both have their place, but it’s so nice to watch the sunset right before bed instead of before dinner!

 

 

5. Kids playing in the sprinkler or backyard pool

Ever just sit on your porch and listen to the neighborhood kids playing outside?  Splashing in the pool, playing tag, laughing, and running…Their happiness is so contagious!  

 

 

6. Cool evenings

Sure, summer days can be hot, but it’s SO very nice when evening rolls around and the air cools down a little.  

 

 

7. Backyard BBQs

If a smiling had an official flavor, I think it might just be the taste of food grilled and eaten outside!

8. Sunlight filtering through the leaves

As much as I love autumn leaves, there’s something inherently happy about laying in the shade under a big, green tree and just watching the leaves blow in the wind overhead.

9. Jumping into cool water on a hot day

Pool, lake, river, or creek, it doesn’t really matter, as long as it’s nice and cool!  100% smile-worthy!

 

 

10. Summer vacations (or staycations!)

Summertime seems to be the universal vacation season.  But whether you’re traveling or just staying home, the much-needed break and memories that go with it are worth a smile!

 

A few more reasons to smile

If 10 wasn’t quite enough, here are a few extra reads to keep you smiling!

 

 

Celebrating the simple pleasures in life

10 reasons to smile – spring edition

What are your reasons to smile?  I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

10 reasons to smile – spring edition

10 reasons to smile – spring edition

10 reasons to smile – spring edition

If you want to add a little happiness and positivity to your day, finding something to smile about is a great place to start!  If you need a few ideas, here is a quick little list of 10 reasons to smile this spring!

 

Why should I look for reasons to smile?

The other day, I woke up and was making my coffee like normal. I looked out the back window and saw something that wasn’t normal…a horse.  Depending on where you live, that may not sound SO unusual…but I live in the city.  And there was also a police car next to the random horse. So, after I poured my coffee (because I was definitely going to need it), I decided to keep watching and once that glorious coffee started to wake up my sleepy brain, I realized what was going on.  The church behind our house has a preschool and the lovely Cleveland Police Mounted Unit was there to visit the kiddos.  I watched as they placed a few of those tiny kidlets in the saddle and let them meet the horse. (Or…Officer Horse?)  I couldn’t help smiling, and honestly, it kind of made my day. Because, duh, cute kids and unexpected animals.

I don’t remember anything else about the rest of that day.  I think it was fairly normal. Work, laundry, meals. All I remember is waking up, smiling first thing in the morning, and being in a great mood for the rest of the day.

Starting each day with a smile is a great way to live, but…how?  I mean, you can’t wake up every day and find an unexpected horse nearby.  (Unless, you know, you have horses…but then they’re not really unexpected.)  So it’s time to get intentional about it!

Intentionally focusing on the positive is a super beneficial thing to practice.  It leaves you more optimistic and generally happier when you’re actively looking for the positives.

But it’s not always easy.  Daily life, stress, and just general thoughts can all creep in and take up a lot of mental space. So I try to make a habit of frequently looking for something to smile about.  Not just noticing occasionally, but looking.

If you’re feeling a little down, or you’re having the day from hell, finding a reason to smile can almost always lift your mood! And sometimes just doing that is the hard part…we can get comfortable in our “blah-ness”.

For example, don’t you just hate it when you’re mad, but something makes you laugh?  You don’t want to laugh. You want to be mad! But how do you feel after that? Better, right?  Sometimes we kind of sink into our moods and get a little comfortable there. Like we don’t WANT to make an effort to be happy, we’re comfortable being down or stressed or angry.  But why? Why would we want to stay in a bad place?  

That’s when it’s the most important to actively seek out reasons to be happy and positive.

10 reasons to smile – spring edition

Every now and then, I like to write something that’s just for fun, but also, hopefully, a little useful.  So I’m starting a seasonal series of posts on things to make you smile. Just for the simple reason that they’re happy things and we occasionally need the reminder to be aware of them. And since spring seems like a great time to start…well…anything, here is the first in this series, my spring edition of 10 reasons to smile!

 

1. A hot cup of coffee first thing in the morning

Oh, there is just nothing better than that very first sip of coffee in the morning!  I am NOT a morning person, but it’s still enough to bring a smile!

 

2. Birds chirping outside

I love that first day when I notice the birds are getting loud.  It’s a sure sign that spring is getting close! 

 

3. Kids laughing and baby giggles

Baby giggles might just be the most contagious thing in the world.  And listening to the neighbor kids run and play and laugh outside? Instant smile.

 

4. The first flowers that bloom for the year

Around here, those first flowers are crocuses. (Crocus?  Croci? Whatever the plural of “crocus” is…) Those little, tiny purple, white, and yellow flowers with their bright green leaves!  Half the time, they’re already blooming before the snow has melted, but they just look so pretty and happy and colorful at the very end of winter.  Spring is definitely on the way when they show up and that’s a reason to smile!

 

5. Finding a good book

I’m pretty sure the only thing I like better than finding a good book is finding out it’s a series and there is more to the story!

 

6. Seeing an act of kindness

When I’m having a realllly bad day, like terrible, I make a point of taking a few minutes to sit down and google “faith in humanity restored”.  If you’ve never done this, try it, because nothing is more worth smiling about than seeing acts of kindness, big or small. Instant mood booster! (Not to mention motivation to look for chances to do your own kind gestures!)

 

7. Rainy Saturdays with no plans

I love a good rainy day.  And, thank you spring, there are usually quite a few rainy days this time of year.  But the best is when it’s a Saturday and there is nothing planned! You get to sleep in, listening to the rain falling outside…  You can stay in, take it slow, and enjoy a lovely, calm day!

 

8. The first day you can open the windows after a long winter

I LOVE having the windows open and usually open them as soon as I possibly can! (It could be argued that it’s usually a little too soon.)  But that nice, fresh air after the house has been closed up for a while is DEFINITELY smile-worthy.

 

 

9. Longer evenings

Fan of Daylight saving or not (I fall solidly in the “not” category, but that’s another story), it’s nice when we gain that extra hour of daylight at the end of the day.  And as the season progresses, they just keep getting longer!  

 

10. Warm, sunny days

I’m not a fan of super bright sunny days.  I have ridiculously fair skin…like bright-lights-could-give-me-a-sunburn kind of fair skin.  So the sun and I don’t always get along. But those early spring days, when the sunshine feels warm, but not hot and bright but not blinding?  That makes me smile like a happy kitten!

 

A few more reasons to smile

If 10 wasn’t quite enough, here are a few extra reads to keep you smiling!

Celebrating the simple pleasures in life

 

What are your reasons to smile?  I’d love to hear about them in the comments!