Taking Care of YOURSELF: The Importance of Indulging and Happiness

Taking Care of YOURSELF: The Importance of Indulging and Happiness


is a state of well-being, characterized by emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy; a state that is influenced by a variety of factors, ranging from a person’s relationships to her personal goal attainments, to the interpretations of her living conditions.


is the state or feeling of being pleased, amused, or gratified from a source of enjoyment or delight: a purely instinctive reaction with a brief lifespan: 30 seconds to an hour or two.

While happiness can be interpretive and selectively elusive, sources of pleasure are fairly easy to come by.

The following is a list of simple ways to put the bliss and indulgence back into your every week, no matter who you are!

1. Listen Once Again. And Again.

Music is not only deeply personal to each person; it inspires and evokes emotion in a healthy way. It touches our emotional being and evokes moods and feelings that are sometimes difficult to express.

Music can change a difficult mood and make it happy or excited; it can change a light mood and take it deeper and more profound. It is spiritual, simple to access and sparks imagination.

Revisit your favorite songs, your favorite singers, your favorite album. Put those songs on repeat and listen to them over and over again. Lose yourself in the melody that depicts milestones or simple times in your life. Relax, close your eyes and let the music take you away for a few songs.

2. Try Out New Eats

Being flexible and adventurous in what you eat is not only a mark of maturity and adaptability; it will set you up for better appreciation of culinary diversity.

Embrace every opportunity that presents itself when it comes to trying new foods and have your taste buds introduced to as much as you can!

Not only to food, but indulge your curious side and say yes hanging out with new acquaintances, say yes more often to social gatherings, indulge in spontaneous conversations and outings, even with people you don't know, to places you've never been and to trying things you’ve been told are boring or dangerous. Indulge in a great sense of adventure!

3. Keep Something Sentimental in Your Desk at Work

Place something emotionally resonant in your purse, wallet, car or on your desk at work and look at it when your mood needs a quick lift.

Place objects that connect you with memories or treasured experiences—maybe a vacation to Spain or your wedding—and occasionally take a moment to pick up one of these items and look at it closely.

Indulge in a moment to remember what made that moment so amazing and elation is sure to follow.

4. Read (or Watch or Participate in) Something That Takes Your Breath Away

A recent study found that people seek out newspaper articles that inspire awe—that hard-to-define feeling we get when we’re exposed to great beauty, power, or accomplishment.

This pleasurable tickle is uniquely human and can be achieved in multiple ways: praying, watching nature programs, and reading stories of personal triumph, to name a few.

Whatever gives you that lump-in-your-throat feeling, pursue it any way you can. And yes, watching your favorite Ryan Gosling romantic movie does count.

5. Look Outside. . . Better Yet, GO Outside!

Humans have spent almost all of their existence on the African savanna, surrounded by trees, water, and sky.

The world in which most of us spend our time nowadays is unnatural and can corrode the spirit. Even a small dose of nature elevates our mood. But accept no substitutes!

Psychologist Peter Kahn Jr. put 50-inch high-definition TVs into windowless offices of faculty and staff members at the University of Washington in Seattle, and streamed in a live view of a natural scene.

It turned out that these HDTVs did nothing for the participants’ physiological stress response. What did work? A window with a view of real greenery.

Take a walk outside every day. Take your shoes off and walk in the sand, grass or dirt to truly ground yourself. Take in the fresh air and feel the sun on your face.

Simply by walking around outdoors, your eyes have a chance to both focus on the ground in front of you and the landscape around you, which is great exercise for TV and monitor over-stimulated eyes. This is one of the simplest ways to indulge your spirit and senses by recharging the body and mind.

6. Pet a Dog or Favorite Animal

Physical contact with animals works wonders. It increases the brain chemicals associated with pleasure and decreases those associated with stress.

Like any enjoyable activity, playing with a dog can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine — nerve transmitters that are known to have pleasurable and calming properties.

Even people without pets can get some of the effect by hanging out for a few minutes at your local rescue shelter or pet store.

7. Give

Giving is a metaphysical act that literally makes you a magnet for whatever you give, be it money, love, time, peace, or joy. Think “Laws of Attraction”- we will attract to us what we give to others.

The more you cling to wealth (just like fame or love), the more it will elude you and the less satisfied you'll be with your lot.

So if you want to be wealthy, spread the wealth. Humans are altruistic by nature: If we act generously, we will feel joyful.

Volunteer at a beach clean-up, at a local homeless shelter, at a local non-profit agency that supports cancer awareness. Go to the website of a favorite charity and make a donation. It doesn’t have to be a lot—just enough to get a small burst of pride and humbleness in your heart.

8. Soak In a Bath

Bathing is wonderfully sensual and can bring you the restful solitude you need to reflect and relax.

In addition to the lovely flush, you’ll get from all that steam and warmth, your skin will soften and become smoother. Tight muscles will loosen and relax, soothing most aches and pains.

Bathing in natural bath salt will enhance your night’s sleep, lower blood pressure and help you distress from the day. It can even reduce the look of fine lines and other signs of aging, leaving you feeling and looking years younger.

Top Foods that Trigger Acne

Top Foods that Trigger Acne

Acne is caused by overproduction of sebum--an oily substance--by sebaceous glands that lie under the skin, other irritants and bacteria. Excess amounts of sebum or other irritants accumulate and block hair pores of the skin. Bacteria then infect the cells and tissues that block the pore. Foods or substances that cause irritation or inflammation, increase bacteria or boost production of sebum can trigger acne. While research results are mixed, there are many clinical reports and well-designed studies that support the contention that food can trigger acne. While it does not seem that acne is a food-related problem, oily and sugary foods may exacerbate the symptoms. Foods such as shellfish, iodized salt, and milk, which are high in iodine, may also exacerbate acne and should be avoided. In general, if you are concerned about acne, foods to be aware of, eat less or avoid include dairy products, processed foods, fatty and fried foods, meat and sugar. 

High GI Foods

Foods high on the glycemic index (GI) list can trigger acne include processed grains such as white bread, biscuits and cake; simple carbohydrates such as sugar, fructose, corn syrup and other sweeteners; and processed breads, cereals and carbohydrates. Many sweets, junk and snack foods, contain sugars that are quickly metabolized into blood sugar. 

Dairy and Other Food Allergies

Acne can be caused by food allergies. The immune system detects the allergen—the food you are allergic to—and attacks it as if it were an invading organism. This misguided protective response by the body results in various reactions including, for some people, acne. Dairy products to be avoided include milk, butter, cheese, chocolate, cream, eggs, and margarine. 

Fried Foods, Fat and Heavy Oils

The types of fats we consume on a daily basis have a big impact on the health of our skin.  Foods that contain trans-fatty acids are thought to contribute to subcutaneous oil, and to stimulate fatty acids and other irritants under the skin's oil glands and hair follicles. Foods to avoid include fatty foods such as milk, milk products such as cheese, sour cream, and ice cream, fried foods, margarine, shortening, synthetically hydrogenated vegetable oils (industrially processed liquid oils, such as soy, corn, safflower, cottonseed and canola) and fried foods.   

Foods with High Levels of Iodine

Iodine is reported to exacerbate acne. Processed foods contain high levels of iodine (from the salt), and should be avoided. Other foods that contain iodine include fast foods, iodized salt, dairy products, egg yolks, chocolate, seafood, kelp, dried fruit, commercial bakery products and onions. 

Other foods and substances such as alcohol, coffee, soda, cocoa, meat, poultry and soft drinks are also thought to trigger or exacerbate acne.

For example, it is thought that meat contains hormone or hormone-like substances that trigger hormonal responses including testosterone, which then increases sebum production.

Likewise, foods that contain caffeine or other stimulants such as coffee, chocolate, cocoa or caffeinated soda are thought to stimulate hormonal responses that trigger the release of sebum. Alcohol, as well as chocolate, fried food and refined sugar are thought to contribute to an acidic internal environment that may foster acne.