Woman Jumping on the Beach

In a way, your life mirrors a relationship. I like to think of life as a kind of a relationship with yourself. It has its ups and down as it ebbs and flows, just like any relationship. At times you are happy with where you stand and what you’ve achieved, and at other times, you need to to get moving. So whether you are married or single, here are five ways to help you fall in love with your life.

1) Appreciate The Small Things

Small details can mean a lot in your life. Renown interior designer Barbara Barry says, “It makes a difference if you have nice sheets or drink tea from a beautiful cup. You can understand that as hard as life can be, it can be balanced with simple pleasures.” While we generally can’t “have it all,” we can have something. And having gratitude for what you do have makes life simpler and more enjoyable.

2) Avoid Comparing Yourself To Others

Comparing what you have in life — in terms of physical appearance or material possessions —to what your neighbors, friends or colleagues have is a lose-lose situation. If you “lose” the battle of who is thinner or who drives a nicer car, it can lead to low self-confidence as you discredit all the accomplishments you’ve made throughout the years. On the flip side of the coin, “winning” can lead to an inflated ego and an unhealthy sense of superiority. If you struggle with this particular point, try comparing yourself to an earlier version of yourself.

3) Practice Small Acts of Kindness

Volunteering with Make-A-Wish Foundation or preparing a home-cooked meal for a neighbor who’s ill can go a long way, and not just for the people you’re helping. Helping others makes people happy. It is as simple as that. Small acts of kindness for other people help you feel good about yourself, and the resulting positive emotion can also help maintain a healthy mental and physical state.

4) Break Big Obstacles into Smaller Ones

This lesson comes from a single mom and well-known speaker who has a doctorate in higher education. When life throws an overwhelming obstacle in your way, the easy path might be to ignore it or go around it. But in that scenario, you haven’t dealt with the obstacle, you’ve only temporarily avoided it. Sooner or later, you’ll likely find yourself face-to-face with it again. A better solution is to face the obstacle head on, but break it up into smaller, more digestible obstacles. So you can’t shed 30 pounds instantly, but you can make a choice to take a 30 minute walk twice a week, or to eat fresh fruits and veggies with every meal.

5) Do Something Nice for Yourself

It’s a good idea to treat yourself on occasion. Get yourself a manicure, join that yoga class, get the girls together to see that movie you’ve been wanting to watch, or spend an afternoon reading in the park. With all of our family and work obligations, we sometimes forget that we need time for ourselves. If you take a little time here and there, you’ll notice that it is easier to deal with the your daily stresses with more tact and poise.

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