7 EXTRA Ways To Be Cheerful – In 5 Minutes Or Less


Lifting the cloud of gloom

It’s challenging to be cheerful, especially with the way things are in the world. Sometimes it’s easier to distract ourselves by doing, doing, doing, so as not to be dragged down, or to numb ourselves with alcohol, food, or our drug of choice.

But what if there were ways to cheer yourself up — with minimum effort? Interested?

Then read on and step out of Gloom Town and into Light City!

7 Quick Fixes for Instant Cheerfulness

Let’s set the stage for a swift mood lift

All except one involve actively doing something — but don’t panic! You don’t need to jump hurdles — or even increase your heart rate. All tips are well within your capabilities. And you’re guaranteed to be cheerful in 5 minutes or less — promise!

Try them all out and see which ones are most effective for you. Drop me a note in the comments at the end of this post. By the way, I’ve already written one blog post on this topic. It’s called 7 Super-Easy Tips To Cheer Yourself Up Fast — Using Only Your Body And Mind. That post is a lot more internally focused. You might want to read it first — or second — entirely up to you!

Your 7 ‘Be Cheerful’ Companions: Ready to Use Anytime

  1. Strike a pose – Power up your mood
  2. A walk — with a twist: Adding fun to your stride
  3. Anchoring happiness: Rewiring your state of mind
  4. Listen and move: dance your way to delight
  5. Attitude of gratitude: The small wins that spark cheer
  6. And… breathe: Mastering the art of mindful relaxation
  7. Helping hand, happy heart: The joy of kindness

1. Strike a pose: Power up your moodFearless Power pose statue

Your mind and body are an integrated system. Your thoughts affect how you feel in your body. The system works the other way as well. If you can move, adapt and change your stance, you experience more expansive thinking and a transformed outlook. The power pose will help you do this as well as helping you be cheerful.

How to power pose

Stand up with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Put your hands on your hips like you mean business — or like you’ve just caught someone raiding your secret chocolate stash! Straighten up and put your shoulders back.

Glance straight out, and up slightly. Notice how you feel now. You could also enhance the sense of calm and confidence by centring and grounding yourself. (See tip # 5 in 7 Super-Easy Tips To Cheer Yourself Up Fast — Using Only Your Body And Mind for how to do this.) As you begin thinking positively, it becomes simpler to think another positive thought, and then another.

2. A walk — with a twist: Adding fun to your stride.

It’s not just a walk; it’s a stroll with a side of stand-up comedy. You’ll be so busy narrating your surroundings that you won’t have time for negative thoughts. Plus, it’s a great excuse to talk to the birds and trees. They’re fantastic listeners!

Two elements undoubtedly make the difference with this tip. The first is that you’re going to genuinely engage with whatever you experience on your walk. You’re going to pay attention to everything you see, as well as what you hear and feel. Sometimes, you may encounter tastes and smells as well. Running an ongoing commentary will stop any negative self-talk and therefore boost the effects of walking.

So you’ll be walking/talking. Note: if there are other people around — you don’t have to talk out loud — unless you aspire to being carted away wrapped in one of those special cardigans that tie your arms around your back! But, if you’re alone, go ahead, talk out loud. If you happen upon another human you can always pretend you were talking to your dog — or your imaginary friend!

Your self talk may go something like this: “I can feel the wind on my cheeks, and I can smell the sea air. The sea looks a little choppy today, and the trees are getting blown around… etc.” You can get down to granular details, like the veins in the leaves. Do this for five minutes, or longer, if you have the time.

The process jams any negative internal dialogue; you can’t be commenting on your surroundings and beating yourself up simultaneously. And while your external focus is on your surroundings, you can’t be making negative images Inside Your Mind.

“It takes no more time to see the good side of life than to see the bad.”Jimmy Buffett

3. Anchoring cheerfulness: Rewiring your state of mind

Anchoring is a naturally occurring phenomenon that’s also called classical conditioning. You might have thought it only applied to the training of animals. Well, since we are a type of animal, we shouldn’t be too surprised that we have often been conditioned or programmed to react in certain ways to specific stimuli.

Anchors can occur in any of your senses. For example, eating popcorn might take you back to the last time you went to the movies.

I won’t go into all the details of anchoring in this post. There’s a definition of anchoring here. I also have a four-minute audio where I take you through anchoring a state of confidence, and there’s a post called How to Achieve Instant Confidence. So, go check those out and come back here for the next tip.

4. Music and movement: dance your way to cheerfulness

woman dancing at home to be cheerful

This involves putting on some upbeat music that you can’t stop yourself singing along and dancing to. You might not feel like dancing, but who cares? You’re not auditioning for “Dancing with the Stars” here. It’s more like a spontaneous dance party in your living room, and you’re the DJ.

If you want to be cheerful, get up off your bum, put the music on and crank up the volume! Now, shake that booty! Come on, dance! And sing. Remember, it’s for five minutes or less. You can also anchor the uplifting sensation you get from practising this tip. (see #3, above)

5. Attitude of gratitude: The small wins that spark cheer

Instead of counting your problems, count your blessings. If you can’t come up with anything in particular, just be grateful you didn’t accidentally put salt in your coffee this morning. It’s the small wins that count! Focusing on what’s wrong in your life will only cause you to find more things that are wrong in your life.

So you’re going to start deliberately noticing things to be grateful for. They can be small things. I was grateful for the comfort of my bed this morning. You might be thankful for the time spent with your family, that you have a job, for a meal. It doesn’t really matter what you’re grateful for, you’re reprogramming your mind to focus on how much there is to appreciate.

And when you observe gratitude, it also helps you be more cheerful.

Get a notebook. It can be any kind of notebook, and write 1 thing you’re grateful for each day. Over time, build up to 5 or even 10 things each day. Before you get out of bed in the morning, write down 1 thing you’re looking forward to during the day. Again, you can build up to more over time.

Finding things to be grateful for will become easier, because, over time the process trains your mind to search for the magic in life, rather than the misery. Your brain acts like a magnet, drawing to your attention to more things to appreciate. Trust me on this.

“I’ve tried this, but I kept thinking of the same things, day after day!”

That’s OK.

Let’s say you’re constantly reminded of the old tree that’s in your back garden. Get more specific about the aspects that you’re especially drawn to; for example, “the leaves are so shiny and such a gorgeous, fresh shade of green in Springtime,” or “I love the ways the bark has deep ridges.” Or “I’m so grateful for the shade it provides in the summer, it’s so peaceful to sit underneath it.”

Get the idea?

Of course you do.

6. And… breathe: Mastering the art of mindful relaxation

You don’t need a PhD in breathing to feel the Zen. Failure to breathe properly will cause tension in your body. For example, breathing only from the upper part of your lungs will make you feel more hyped-up. Whereas breathing from lower down — or belly breathing — will help you relax.

Try this short breathing exercise to find balance in your nervous systems. At the end of five minutes, you’ll have a sense of being both relaxed and alert.

Begin by sitting or standing comfortably, with your back straight. Then, breathe in deeply to a count of six. (If you can’t do six, do whatever count is comfortable). Breathe out for the same count. The aim is to achieve a gentle sine wave of breathing.

Next, imagine that as you breathe in, visualise breathing into your heart; envisage inhaling all the good vibes and then breathing them out from your heart and down, into your gut. (It can help to put one hand on your heart and the other on your gut.)

The last piece is to imagine that as you breathe into your heart, that you’re breathing in gratitude, appreciation, or love, and then breathing that down into your gut. You could visualise a colour if that helps. Continue for 5 minutes and notice how good you feel at the end of that time.

woman breathing

The relaxed, yet alert state you’ll achieve can last for up to five hours. At this point, it’s much easier to attain the flow state that is so coveted by creatives the world over. Or, you could continue on and start a meditation practice.

Personally, I struggle to shut down my thoughts in meditation. However, I have discovered a trick that you might want to try. Ask yourself; ‘I wonder what my next thought will be?’


Crickets, right!?!

You’re welcome 😊. You could now start by meditating for a couple of minutes. 2 minutes might sound ridiculous, I agree. But if you want to meditate and struggle to avoid becoming consumed by your thoughts, then 2 minutes might be perfect! It confirms to your brain that you can meditate — banishing thoughts that you can’t! Gradually increase the length of your meditation.

7. Helping hand, happy heart: The joy of kindness

Kindness to others is a direct path to your own cheer. Do deeds and spread kindness like confetti. Look around you and notice people who may be struggling, or otherwise in need of a helping hand. What can you do to help? Being kind and helping others will always make you feel better, and more cheerful too.

“Nothing else in all life is such a maker of joy and cheer as the privilege of doing good.” – J.R. Miller

  • Make some extra food to give to a neighbour.
  • Smile — you never know how much a simple smile might mean to someone; it might be your superhero cape for the day!
  • Run an errand.
  • Write positive message on sticky notes —and stick them in places where people will find them.
  • I bet you’ll have lots of ideas, but if you need more, go here.

Your toolkit for how to be cheerfulHow to Change Your MInd - eBook

Your 7 Cheerful Companions: Ready to Use Anytime

  1. Strike a pose – Power up your mood
  2. A walk — with a twist: Adding fun to your stride
  3. Anchoring Happiness: Rewiring your state of mind
  4. Listen and move: Dance your way to delight
  5. Attitude of Gratitude: The small wins that spark cheer
  6. And… breathe: Mastering the art of mindful relaxation
  7. Helping hand, happy heart: The joy of kindness

You’ll also find tips to help you in my How To Change Your Mind eBook.

Do you have any tips that help you be cheerful?

Add them in the comments below, so we can all benefit. Thanks ❤️


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Tags: Fun and laughter, Health and wellbeing, Managing mood and emotions, Podcasts and audio tips, Self-confidence and self-esteem, Thinking and mindset


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