Tag Archives: Happiness

5 simple lifestyle changes to make your life 10X happier and fun filled!

Are you someone who feels like having denied enough fun? That for some reason you never have had a happier more fulfilling successful life? Even a boat load of playfulness wouldn’t help to shake off a pretty boring life and you’re always looking for fun outside of you!

Image source: ’10 simple habits for a successful and happy life’ by Jeff Bell in moneyinc.com on Sep.27, 2018.

If that’s you, then in all probability fun is like the exact opposite of work to you; the party is no longer living within you and you couldn’t have fun anywhere.

Simply put you’re not a fun person anymore!

Fun isn’t frivolous but it can actually help you to be not only happier but more successful at work as well. In short it isn’t just a pleasant distraction from the serious business of living. In an uncertain world where stress rides piggy back all the time, holding on to a sense of playfulness can be hard.

Keeping on top of all serious responsibilities of adulthood and still hoping to make room for fun moments in life?…well, not everyone has the “fun mindset” or the ability to negotiate conflict, build empathy and  let off a crazy LOL. With no fun around to motivate, you might never outlive a poker faced person! But if you could manage it the Einstein way… I mean learn faster, work furiously and be successful like never before, may be you could manage few more moments of it.

And yet, we think having fun isn’t an option and let years of not having it reinforce this belief.

So, if you’re wondering where to begin and how to become a fun person to bring out all the mirth and gaiety that has lived inside you holed up, but hasn’t seen the light of the day for a while, here’re a few tips to beat the blues off.

I begin my day by remembering what I’m grateful for

Being thankful and appreciative is perhaps the easiest way to change tracks from despair and hopelessness to cheerfulness and some great expectations. Each morning I set aside a few wakeful moments to feel obligated for all the goodness that has happened to me. It reminds me of all that is exciting in life and encourages me to build on them.

Believe me, it’s a phenomenal way to start the day!

Instead of scrolling on Insta or surfing the net mindlessly while having my morning cup of tea, I pull out my old crinky journal and write down 10 good things that have happened to me and make me feel thankful for; being precise or detailed…it doesn’t matter.

It works as a reminder of what happy times I’ve experienced. Everything else fades into background. Best…I keep a spitting image of this note at the back of my mind throughout the day.

And trust me, it works!…it helps to relieve stress. It helps to forget the struggles that I lost. But it also helps to relive the ones that I won!

Image source: ‘How to be happy: 27 habits to add to your routine’ in healthline.com.

Being easy with fun is exciting!

How many times have you felt like you life has run out of control? Despair and gloom overshadows everything else.

Mastering it though is what would let you back in control of yourself and make the most of every opportunity!

But …how to go about it?

I think we all are open to making changes in our lives if that could make us happier and more successful. A few of us follow the humor route though. The easiest way to have more of it … I think is not to try to be funny but look for good moments to laugh.

Laughter comes at a price but has more a benefit unto itself. The more open you are to laughter the more attractive you’ll be both to other people and to yourself.

Sometimes saying “yes” works- best!

You may have heard of this … it could make a fun magnet out of you and turn you into a charming, fanciful and amusing person. All it amounts to is greeting new ideas with enthusiasm and building a few of your own.

You don’t need to be a slapstick jester to be good at this. Instead begin by choosing not to shoot down other people’s ideas but to build on them and make them feel inclusive.

Being adaptive and open would mean you’ve become less of a wet blanket.

Image source: ‘This One Thing Can Help You Live A Longer And Happier Life, Science Says’ by Alexa Mellardo in eatthis.com on Jan.20, 2022.

Nothing betters loving yourself

If you want to a happier fun filled life, don’t chase anything- not even happiness. It doesn’t come nearly as easily to those either who constantly pursue it!

There is another more simple easier way to unlock true happiness…

Making time each day to do things just for you, has an euphoric effect on the way you feel about yourself and the world happening around you. Morning or night…doing things dear to you will make you more relaxed and will leave you with something to look forward to. These things don’t have to be over the top or grand or glorious; anything as simple as taking half an hour each morning to read your favorite story book or going for a stroll or a short nimble walk…can you think of anything to better this shot at self care!

Allowing yourself to experience your best emotions-whatever they may be-is your best bet to enhance your happiness.

 Gestures speak better than badass words!

You do know how a dog when it wants to play raises its butt, prances around and wags its tail. No words uttered and yet it lets you know what it wants!

I think we should all master the human equivalent of this amazing canine act. A brief eye contact, a wry smile or perhaps an unintentional comment never intended to strike a conversation, might lit the spark. Not  much I’d say when it comes to sending out play signals but even a sarcasm sometimes works.Nice weather here! even when you’re experiencing one of the worst snowstorm in recent times, might just be the right shot to make a hit.

See… finding a way to look up from your phone and making a point, howsoever irrelevant, is surely a wonderful way to invite perky conversations –and finally more fun in your life! Even if you’re shy, introverted or a person with more on serious side, discovering the secret to having more fun is never any less exciting!

Feature credits: ‘When Nobody’s Watching’ by Klick in YouTube.com on Dec.08, 2020.

Nobody is perfect at this and life’s not always rainbows and ice creams for everybody, but whatever we choose to think and how we decide to view them…the stories we tell ourselves; just about everything becomes a part of our longing to build up a more joyous and happier life.

And it’s never been about just sitting back and letting life happen to you…

It’s you who need to happen to life!

Don’t let yourself be robbed of happiness when you’re sad and down in the dumps!

Life is chaotic and sometimes awful things happen out of blue. And when that occurs, it feels like we’ve been thrown for a loop. Pushing to edge, it infects all our waking hours with endless worries and mellows our happiness.

Image source: ‘7 Steps to Embracing Mind-Body Wholeness in the New Year’ by Deepak Chopra in chopra.com on Dec.19,2018.

Yet, instinctively we keep driving through, often surviving on adrenaline. We over schedule ourselves; we drink umpteen cups of coffee; we respond to one more e-mail; we stay amped all day believing that we’ll eventually be able to set things straight and done. And in the way, we let ourselves burn recklessly.

It’s rude and shocking…for all that burning doesn’t do any good. Except that it overwhelms us and drowns all our happiness amidst the entire struggle. Misplaced trust, broken promises, blatant lies; just about everything stokes our sufferings.

Looking forward!

In this frantic world, happiness is like a friend you rarely have the chance to catch up with. But finding a moment of reassurance is never impossible. You may presume that you can find happiness when you’re finally completely free of troubles; but that’s not how it works.

In fact it runs the other way around and isn’t as challenging as it seems.

Terrible things do happen to each one us at some point in life. When you are caught in the thick of things-whether it’s about a snappy senior or a brassy relative who don’t believe in boundaries or yet another viral video of a violent racist incident you’re left stranded with mounting fears and have no clue how to handle it.  Worse, rather than hoping for a better end, you come up with a snappy retort and a quick fix to quell your unease.

But would an irrational assumption and aggression be of any good? Like climate change wouldn’t that mean hurtling down a worm hole of offensive ends and no-win arguments?

So, if you feel you have no space for peace left with you, are terribly hurt or perhaps angry and looking for a smarter way-a calmer way to bring to you greater attention and ingenuity without shedding one bit of happiness…these three simple ways might just let you find your Zen in a world that seems anything but peaceful.

Image source: ‘Seven ways to rest’ by Sherryl Garratt in the creativelife.net on Dec.06, 2021.

Forgiveness is good

Feeling hurt, even angry is a forgivable response when you are wronged or treated unfairly. But holding on to slights doesn’t help in reclaiming happiness. They take up so much of your emotional energy and push your emotional wellness to the wall.

Forgiveness on the other hand, isn’t something that helps the person alone you forgive. It does even more for you in the end. Of course, it’s a long demanding emotion and goes beyond a simple, “I forgive you”. Worse, sans compassion, it misses acceptance and would leave you mired in self blame and regret.

Regretting and trying to clean up the wrong on the other hand, is one good amend to begin with. Over the time, real good changes will happen to your behavior and I’m sure you won’t have to lie to your worrisome waking hours any more.

Find time for yourself

I find loneliness a mere normal state of mind that builds around relationships but desperately yens for sociability when abandoned.

While spending just the right amount of time with yourself is good for your emotional well being, excess of solitude can badly hurt your happiness over the time. Let it turn intense and it will become all consuming and wreck your everyday life. Your creative side will erode; you won’t be able to re-evaluate your boundaries and above all you wouldn’t be able to connect with your needs.

When something terrible happens and stress overwhelms, we speculate about what wrong we’ve done to cause bad luck. “I must have been wrong in standing up to myself. I created this mess for someone else and now it has double backed to me.” It’s natural for you to think and regress then.

Correct this distortion if that’s what is hurting you. Don’t wait to use your supports. They might help you see the problem differently, but deserting your nemesis and rebooting your mind to do away with ill thoughts is your personal need.

Catch them young and you could reclaim your happiness even while busy in your daily grind.

Get back to nature

Don’t we all head back to the trees (or the seas) when stress goes for a spin and begin to take its toll? Doesn’t the feel of the breeze, the smell of the grass, the sound of water running, feel at home in the outdoors?

Setting better boundaries starts here!…

Getting back to nature is one step to ease your emotional distress. It’s amazing how you could find great friends in elements around you whenever disquiet turns exhausting. As extravagant or as simple as you want it to be, there is no need for a footslog far away to some mountain top. Start with few smaller hauls and as you get closer and closer to nature, you’ll find you’re rid of your excessive worries and your innate self is back in gear. You’re no longer bedeviled! Trust me, your best bet to escape from 100 or 1000 worries lies right beyond your garden fence.

And don’t forget to leave your phone at home. A constant stream of notifications and e-mails or the urge to refresh your social media frequently can quickly chip away at your newly found zing!

Image source: pexels.com.

Most meltdowns, I think are rarely catastrophic. They are fixable and never meant to be a 24/7 experience. Yet being constantly surrounded by them feels more like being hunted in a savanna by some wild animal where your stress response is all spooked up to save your life. Your attention is mobilized and riveted, your muscles are strained for a quick sprint and your immune system is racy enough to get you quickly out of danger.

This edginess though is usually short lived. In fact you’re stressed in real sense only for five minutes….more like before you die! But even in those few anxious moments it burns into your body, slams your emotional well being and crashes your decision making. It is then that you get tightly wound up and are more likely to react harshly than to respond with reason.

No matter what you choose to purge your guilt or how you decide to go about it, repossessing happiness never happens overnight. It’s only your patience that would make all the difference between a beaten sod and a wishful Pollyanna.

Your takeaway!…

Next whenever you hit a bad trip and are clueless about how to cope with it, find a ray of hope in my playbook; without pre judging anything try your hand for once… something might just work right for you!

Living with the heart of a Sea Goat! Discerning compatibility revealed stranger truths.

Serious and extremely driven, it’s hard to argue with how good these ‘half goat-half fish’ Capricorns are at heart.

Here’s all the brutal truth and secrets about loving the hardest zodiac sign.

Image source: aliexpress.com.

­­­Only if you are born between December 22 and January 20, you’d agree that people of this theatrical zodiac sign, are usually spoiled for choices and love to scoff at astrology. They are generally so deeply rooted in this deafening world that they wouldn’t understand one damn thing about the mystique surrounding the stars.

What amuses me all the more is people’s ability to label you as a zodiac sign, which probably you’re not. I’ve so often been tagged as a Virgo, Taurus, and Leo etc. If you should know my true sign is Capricorn and I don’t believe any of those signs are any far from one another or completely different.

I‘ve come up with an alternate theory though. Call me a zodiac skeptic but the goat in me sometimes feels so misrepresented, and maligned that she’s no fun to be living with! Who wouldn’t like to zero in on parts that resonate most and conveniently ignore the rest?

It’s kinda groping around for some comfort. What am I? Who I want to be and who I’m afraid I might be. Aren’t you frequently mistaken simply because people read into you as “who they want you to be”.

No wonder countless people flaunt their sign as a point of pride, but never forget to evade the stereotypical geeks like Patrick Bateman from American Psycho, unless they are really into some freak who’s boring, enraging, workaholic. Worse even Jeff Bezos – a Capricorn couldn’t manage to get rid of this sick cosmic joke. Somehow the entire world seems to be on the anti Cap and the tale that follows, is all too powerful to be snubbed easily.

When I was young and first learned about zodiac signs, I felt it was all creepy and uncomfortable. I had begun to have my doubts.

Like everybody’s my family too had several birth dates. My dad was born in the sixth sign of zodiac Virgo which meant balance everywhere; social justice, friendships, family; industrious, everything felt so gentle, unflustered and above the board! You couldn’t have witnessed a more distinctive person; high energy, authoritative and sometimes incredibly entertaining! He had a commanding presence that you’d either love or hate; nowhere in between.

Growing up in the shadow of someone like him made me wish our signs could somehow switch. Yet I knew I wouldn’t fit in if miraculously that were to happen somehow. I was shy, uncomfortable in social situations and felt awkward for most of the time. I cared too much about other’s opinions. My dad’s confidence to “not carewhat others’ thought could do little to pull me up. I couldn’t help fear everybody’s judgment. I couldn’t get myself being involved and upright. I could never thrive at being the center of attention the way he did.

I was introverted, sensitive and feeble for the shock and awe that went with it. I loved roosting in my shell and was Ok for not being the live wire that my dad was in every situation. I preferred to stay intimate to myself and a small group of people that I knew closely.

It’s funny how we perceive things and are so myopic on just a few parts of people around us. We get fixated on part of the statement and miss the rest of the paragraph so conveniently.

Nobody could ever imagine that the shy, awkward geeky person that I was, could transform into someone who would dwarf everything else in a way so contrary to a Capricornian. Maybe I was underestimated; misunderstood rather, but I loved it. I was probably picking up on the prized bling of this zodiac sign by now. Alternating between silly, sweet, and serious, I was now natural allies to finer flings of life.

This meant that if I could get to be anything close to what a firebrand my dad was then his zodiac sign was entirely wrong. Maybe the stars had taken a day off, the year he was born. He was a Virgo born with a million ideas per second and a clean freak in its truest form.

Sure I was peevish and insecure on many issues. For a diehard introvert that I was, stars did count and conspired against me in the astrological world. Yet I loved to be the top bill, like everybody else. I longed to be admired and would feel gutted if I couldn’t get to steal the show. Plus , God knows…how much I would have loved to wow the people around me.

It’s only now that I could imagine well why I couldn’t stand tall in that 96 sheet space; I was probably falsely selling myself short.  “Darn!” why it took me so long to realize that no story gets any better without an interesting villain?

I am still not sure if there is enough to say that there is a strong possibility that my personality matched my zodiac sign or came any close to my dad’s.

“You walk and talk just like your dad”;

One of dad’s old pal who would later become one of my true inspiration and a good educator told me once.

Aw shucks.!..

I had to laugh. He was right!

Image source: Volker Meyer in pexels.com.

It’s not that Caps are truly as cold as the season in which they enter this world; it’s just that that for them the World is a big messy affair where only everything relevant stays and thrives.

Today not feeling disconnected or as evil and dangerous as vilified, I see life as a treasure and not a sob story. All it needs is some unique rebranding before you’d sell it to yourself. Not everybody approves of that, ofcourse. Wisecrack and gigs that follow, are pitiful but plentiful;

“They always say that we’re assholes, or we’re emotionless. So savage. And that’s the complete opposite of who I am,” Sara Tan, Refinery29’s beauty director rues.

Perhaps Caps do need to take a step back and fix the conflicts surrounding their image. Most of them would jump at that. But beware! If Laura Dern’s character in Big Little Lies wasn’t only about ball busting or money spinning then not all Caps are cold and crazily reserved. It’s just that pop astrology blankets them as success fiends’.

Remember …Caps are ruled by Saturn! Oh yes! I almost forgot. Saturn is more of an old man now. So if you still choose to give them this rigid label-‘stop’. You could be busting their fiddle foot growth over some ill conceived generational conflict.

Image source: Snow white in pexels.com.

Actually this sounds pretty weird but I think caps are more about moving ahead with uprightness.”

My secret to a blithesome married life: Love, loss and few grains of happiness!!

Image source: ‘Couples all over Instagram are “doing life together.” Here’s where it came from.’ by Laura Turner in vox.com on Aug. 02, 2019.

Everyone has vampires in their lives and like every relationship, marriage too is a ridiculously complicated one. It’s simple and easy to believe… that if only both individuals could get to know each other, understand each other’s needs and get comfortable with their surroundings, living a life with all its dark pleasures and experiences- healthy or unhealthy; would work epic.

Like sweet lies before the bed it would get under your skin and drive you nuts like some lemon bae!…all tangy and exciting.

It’s equally simple to say that people marry for love, but I believe it’s more about the joy of sharing things and experiences that makes for the most suitable material for wedding vows. When two individuals decide to live together, life is fated to turn upside down. Sometimes it’s not an easy one. An uncomfortable, bumpy road faces you. Understanding, likes and dislikes, need to know…challenges weigh heavy!

And it’s gets stormy and uncomfortable for those who couldn’t manage to keep moods high. Loss is inevitable if you don’t know how to cross stitch the canvas of life, needles going in and out, adhering to a pattern you cannot foresee or comprehend.

If you ask me, loss works just fine for weights and investments, but when it comes to living with a companion, you wouldn’t know a thing till countless panic attacks and anguish ransack you. Worry swallows you whole!

Over the past, the soreness of losses has grown. Some of us fume against the God, others find comfort in imagining multiple lives. Very few would look for solace elsewhere…

Haven’t we heard infinite times that a successful and everlasting marriage is forged with peace, love, and trust as primary choices. But what if it starts to lose it’s sheen? What if those snaky pencil scrawls, coffee chats, salty fried crumbly banana chips and clover leaves dried between the pages, begin to lose their craziness. What if all that pep talk about love and aftermath falls flat?

With just about everything else happening under the sun, wouldn’t it be fine to ignore the trite and build an elegant restraint for a successful loving relationship?

Here’s few simple ways to help you keep your togetherness blissfully alive and stoked!!

Choose to be attractive

Attraction is a decision that you need to make through out your marriage. You get to decide if your partner is hot and sultry!..if you are saucy enough to be exciting to your mate; if you are tasteful and zesty enough to be the zippy sparkling person she always wanted you to be! Who wouldn’t want to feel the excitement of being with a flirtatious, incredibly sexy and attractive partner?

Evolution has wired us to be drawn to anything and everything that appeals to senses. ‘Attraction thoughts’ likewise push you to focus on attributes that are exciting and drawing most. Like your beau’s great legs or the way she dresses or parents your kids? If this is freaking awkward; to you , it’s good news indeed!.… none of you have to be a cover model to feel attractive!!

Your happiness is only about feeling connected to each other. After all physical attraction runs far deeper than looks!

Giggle, chuckle, cackle or guffaw together

Life at times hurts, so if you can find some mirth even when you are in the thick of it, it helps. A laugh is what decides if you are being perspective. Finding hilarity in both good and bad times make partners find ease around each other. Be it some little inside joke, a silly irrelevant text or even watching a boring comedy together, connecting with your mate strengthens your bond even better.

Celebrate every small good moment for there will be none like it

Tough is a bad word, It’s dismissive and cruel. We all get our fair share of moments when our wits get thrown to wilds. It hurts, but to have someone in the weeds together, helps you shake off the despair easily.

And it’s just as important to acknowledge good times as well…together!

Image source: ‘Elderly couple resting on a bench’ in dreamstime.com.

If you ask me, good things happen more often than the bad ones, but we miss those opportune moments to connect.

So, next time your mate shares anything positive like some admiration from office colleagues or compliment from the boss, drop everything you are doing and lend an earful! Help each other savor the moment by sharing and celebrating. Promise yourself to open doors to your heart. Your fleeting moments together with few precious grains of happiness will never fail to outweigh darkness.

Don’t let the thought of a probable breakup haunt you

I was hanging around with my friends, I just couldn’t get to call back’. ‘I am over my ex’. ‘You’re just overreacting, there’s nothing to hide’.

Any such thought, big or small, is a big ‘No’ for a healthy and trustworthy relationship. So, if you find this tormenting and hurting, it’s not mere reflection of your anxiety but a red flag of a non-serious relationship.

Justified or not, chances are that you might be thinking of moving out!

But who wouldn’t prefer a few joyous moments over all that gloom and darkness?

And it’s easy too!!

Simply, don’t hold grudges for too long in your heart. Forget the mistakes of the past and reach out for some happy moments of the future. No jumbo patience… and be forgetful of the past bitterness for the real joy comes by chance. Feel it in the peals of laughter at a passing joke that leaves you gasping for breath; when you cross your legs so you don’t pee on yourself for you couldn’t make it to loo. It’s snuggled in the movement of hands painting, knitting, cooking or even rhythm of your legs on long rambling walks. It’s both the feeling of rapids thundering inside you and in the soft humming overwhelming your heart.

Funnily, happiness collides with you only when you are looking the other way.

Image credits: ‘Oldest Living Couple Reveals The Secret To Marital Success’ by Brittany Wong in huffpost.com on No, 22, 2019.

Even happy couples argue

With all that dancing and laughter and revelry- marriages are fun but being married isn’t always a piece of cake. There’s actually a lot that goes into living “happily ever after,” Not every marriage is happiness all the time. Like other relationships, sometimes marriages too hit a rough patch. But when in fight; happy marriages do listen to every view point, recognize them and if it threatens to go off the rail; try to mend them together!

Hinges crusted with past scabs, all that the door to your heart needs is a hard push. Ignore the screeching hinges and push firmly. Loving with all your heart, generously and fearlessly, will come back to you in dollops not dribs.

Accepting the inadequate rewards you with ever lasting bliss. In fact, being in argument means you’re normal and mad and hopelessly in love with each other!!

Age doesn’t matter

Been in wedlock for more than three decades and I have never considered age anything more than a numerical inaccuracy; some numbers that needs to be tackled all the time. The only thing that worries me is that it works more as a multiplier than as a division sum. We all get reduced to a fraction of what we once were!

But what the heck…!

At 40 you could still be the pig tailed gal or some jaunty good looking knock-out beau! Both of you could still climb the trees, jump the wall and beat up all the boys. Young and raunchy, fiercely ambitious with disdain for conventions, you both have had your share of one heartbreak, one breakdown, one true love, one success, one moment of despair and gloom – you have had mountains of them.

Yet looking into each other’s cringing eyes, creaking knees and despairingly loosening skin, things are not so crest fallen. Now that you have learned to love your lines and folds, aches and pains lose ground.

Besides there is no shame in growing old and struggling a bit. It never felt better for me to have equivalent of a general’s medal, pinned to my frame; and a reminder of all the battles I have survived and the ones I won!

Feature credits: ’10 Secrets for Happy Relationship and Tips for long lasting happy marriage life’ by Kennis World in Youtube.com on Sep 20, 2019.

Reality check? Well… “You do complete each other”. Age is a fabled minion that’s romantic and lets you flies high in the real world.

#It matters no more!!

Want to be eternally happy? Being miserable and thinking of negative thoughts helps!!

Seeing the glass as half empty might inspire you to fill it up!

Image source: ‘Skinny dancer jumping over sand’ by Andrew in pexels.com.

Happiness for me is an elusive virtue and for the most part ‘think positive’ belief fails me as a miracle fizz for mental wellness; one that you could pop in and instantly make half empty glass turn half full and everything around is suddenly bright and sunny. But just because I generally don’t eye the world from behind those rose tinted glasses, doesn’t mean that something’s wrong with me!

Sounds weird…doesn’t it? if this rings freaking odd to you, then you could actually be the one who is ecstatic and all pumped up about happiness, but is more miserable within!

How many times have you been told that great things happen so long as you believe them possible to happen and think positive? From pop psychology to improv classes to self improvement blogs; hype surrounding the advantages of positive thinking never leaves the din.

Sure, it’s good to be positive. It reduces stress and probably tweaks health. And it makes me vote for one profound statement that usually proves naysayers wrong; optimism bags you rewards most of the times including your well being!

But what about those who tend to see glass as half empty rather than half full? Does that mean that they cannot keep your sunny side up all the time? Is being a pessimist that bad?

I would say that only a handful recognize that our unhappiness lies in overly high expectations and too little struggle to overcome snags early on. Damned!…the millennials always get shamed as a ‘burnout generation’ that’s left with few choices to make.

Because we couldn’t make time for happiness; we are busy, confused and sad.

Fortunately a grim outlook doesn’t need to be a permanent one. You may get scattered from mildly pessimistic to relentlessly optimistic. But if you get hunkered down at the perilous end, you could still reap some benefits of being downbeat without burning yourself out.

And it takes only a few changes. Small and gradual; they are nothing like what you’d expect;

To begin with here’s a few of them;

You’ve been pushing yourself too hard to be happy.

Negativity sometimes works as a great defense ammo. You don’t get always crushed when things don’t work out your way. It never distracts you from a pessimist’s favorite past time; brainstorming. 

But it’s not always good to beat a dead horse! When you are ruminating; it’s not just another bad day, it’s always a bad day in a bad life of a bad person!

Besides, pessimism loves to blow even a minor problem to a billboard size one.

I couldn’t easily overcome that valley low feeling whenever I get stormed loud and messy. It’s overwhelming. I get screwed up fast because I couldn’t burn the bridges behind my back! Maybe my octopus teachings are not profound as it goes.

Do you think you would be left with any room to focus, if it soaks up so much of bandwidth? It’s no surprise why dreamers never fail to outsmart the pessimist in you on happiness index.

So, find yourself some quick distraction you can use whenever you realize that you’ve been stuck up with same negative thought for long. Pitch yourself into activities that ask for your full attention. Yoga, aerobics, calling a friend or even absorb some music. It might help you to avoid falling flat on your face.

And don’t be some eternal jaded jerk; it never feels epic. It’s perfectly alright to get depressed. Just stop trying to be happy. Stay in your lane and you may end up making more money and win over a happier marriage!!

It feels so good to blame someone else for your woes

“I’m lousy at tennis”; “My opponent has a killer serve.”

If you are the one whose way of interpreting life’s ups and down is dismissive and begins as an inane story with petty perspectives, then you could be failing in giving some basis respect to your self. When good things happen to you, you dismiss it as a fluke; when bad things happen you jump to blame yourself and brace yourself for a long spell of silent sufferings!

But you are not like some textbook dingbat who would wake up each morning wondering which and what went wrong. Are you?…

Bad events are like one time problems and disappear quickly. And optimists too get their dark afternoons. Cancer patients among them are just as badly depressed as their pessimistic counterparts.

So, when you catch yourself being dark, glum and all that, re-frame the problem so that it doesn’t sound like yours alone. Instead of standing all by yourself and thinking “No one is interested in me — I am pathetic!”, try something more bright; “Where’s the hostess? How could she let a newcomer fend for herself without making introductions? I most certainly wouldn’t allow that to happen”!

No scapegoats of course! But it helps to recognize that you’re not the problem, even if your behavior could use some pinch.

Besides, it feels good to keep practicing your tennis serve even if you’re not sure how would you rally against someone at your level. It’s always promising and worthwhile to throw a bad serve than drop the racket.

Feature credits: ‘The Optimist’s Creed -‘Denzil Washington’ by The Motiv8 in YouTube.com on Dec.18, 2015.

If only you’d imagine the world is coming to end.

Another thing that darkens your prospects to be happy is your penchant to make a mountains out of a molehill. You are always hyperlinked to yourself, rewriting grim possibilities until they blow off and turn into something of a doomsday screenplay. A simple cough turns into pneumonia; not the kind that would let you recover from ever! One missed deadline and it’s fast forward into permanent unemployment!

“Am I really to live beneath an underpass in a freeze box because I’m a day late on a project?”

Worst case scenarios are usually absurd but rewinding and playing them over and over again, makes illogical appear inevitable!

And it sucks!

So… just think of the outcomes that’s most likely. Chances are you are gonna miss the executive suit, but it won’t be under the freeway either!

The stunner of all this messing around is, that you do get to feel a bit of power over your thoughts and situation. The sense of nursing pessimism each morning works fine, for the world is not going to get shrunk in one day.

Keep trying and you’ll get what’s coming to you!

Do you know why your opponent at tennis court ends up with so much to feel good about at the end of the day? Long after you have given up and gone home still thinking suckers!… he keeps trying to unscramble impossible- to-solve mind benders!

There’s a lot of payoffs in this. Persistence is the cutting edge and it means what !…success at school,fatter paychecks at work and wider social acceptability. Who wouldn’t want to make some brilliant win sometimes?

If you are looking for the quickest way to get yourself in the loop, then act like the person you want to be; It’s only about changing the way you feel and the way you think that would define you.

When recognition is the only inspiration, act like you have triumphed some crazy big match battling it out with confidence and hard work.Fake it till you make it’ for this can have surprisingly strong and immediate impact on your emotions. But then, it works only when you correctly identify something within yourself that’s holding you back.

Get surrounded with upbeat people

Yawns like smile are contagious. Positive vibes work the same way. Hanging around with people who aren’t so grouchy about anything and everything, could be your one-way ticket out of an unrelenting pessimism. And if you are not feeling particular chatty, you don’t have to talk about what’s troubling you or put around the word that your mind is in a negative tizz. No need for anybody to know exactly what’s bothering you.

But simply being surrounded with positive minded people is usually enough to trigger a grin all around and shift your mood.

Image source: Vlada Karpovich in pexels.com

So, keep your frown right where it is, for some form of pessimism actually heals when not taken too far. Ignored and unforgiving;it in fact is protective and sometimes rewarding!

Whatever…

Someone’s telling you ‘no, is always a problem.

Small choices! Yup…but encourage yourself to smile, smile…and smile for this world is only about solutions; not problems.

And happiness is a journey where so many things make you happier, #guaranteed.

I took time off to help myself make friends :Here’s how it went!

If Paul Simon or David Crosby had their way and ruled the world forever; all we’d need is to make a call and a BFF would show up right on our doorsteps!

Reality however, is like some dark afternoon and friendship is the stormiest of all the ties. As hard it is to find ethereal love, arguably it is even more difficult to pick up a new pal whom we can really connect to.

Image source: Sudip Paul in Pexels.com.

Free time is scarce- For everybody! And so are friends.

Making one, particularly in this day and age, isn’t easy either!

They just don’t appear. You have to intentionally reach out to someone who doesn’t bore you, is not a hypocrite and never stalls to share.

And I was running scarce on friends!!

So, I set up certain tricky standards before I could touch elbows. I looked around for adjacent friends; the types you sometimes get to see at the Gung-ho parties that usually share mutual friends, but never get to have one-to-one conversations.

Still I didn’t know how to get past that awkward small talk and double time the “Hi! would you care to be friends” business. I had always thought of making friends but dreaded going to the drawing board.

I tried to fit in with the people I already knew…well it just didn’t happen…maybe it was way deeper than I thought it ought to!

The year I turned fifty was the year I realized I didn’t have friends. I was moving into a new decade of my life and felt strongly about my career, accomplishments and relationships.

Yet when somebody would ask me whom I will send a ‘red heart’ on friendship day; my mouth will open, I would gulp and nothing would come out but a long trail of “ummms”…

Like everybody else I loved to hang around with friends. I was wary and timid but would always manage to survive the cutting edge. I would often step out of the box and was friends to many. I was spending very few hours of any day alone!

When I moved out to my job after University, I could still manage to get people to hang around with and never fell short of full social calendar. Real or not…those guys never left me off the hook. I was a footloose and always raring to fight fire with fire at the drop of a hat!

But then something changed!

A lot many of them got married and drifted off; a few shifted to bigger cities and I felt flat. For once I was robbed-off togetherness.

Crank calls grew stale and scarce. We would rarely see each other and whenever that happened, it felt empty. It were as if everybody had burnt the bridges behind their backs! No hang outs, no pep talks…no happy hours to attend; it sensed like I was laid-off from my full time job.

As if this was not enough of a complete shocker, an old timer buddy also left behind, declared abruptly that he no longer wanted to be friends anymore and wouldn’t care less if I felt the same way!

The last straw was blown to winds…. Everybody had hung me out to dry.

I felt sad and lonely. I was nearing retreat and struggling to be mates!

For the mess, I placed a lot of blame on myself. I was canceling weekend plans. I was forgetting to respond to text messages for days. It felt like I hadn’t invested time in fueling friendship. It was like I usurped everything to run it dry. I could have shown more interest in my friends and their families. Instead I chose to spend a lot of my free time sulking and arguing myself.

Why I couldn’t have someone to call a best friend ?

Why wouldn’t I have a guest list nice and long enough to reserve more than a table for two on my Anniv blast?

With so many screaming lives running at full speed and in different directions, it’s hard to slow down long enough to find and develop new friends. People are hooked more than ever onto devices; so finding someone who would care more for a real life connect is a challenge.

Did I get to make new friends?…

I realized that I needed a few things before I could rake up quick rapport with someone. Little did I know then that I was prepping myself for a new decade; both in age and life!

And this is how I saved myself hours of tepid, dead-end banter…

It was my call…so;

Feature credits:’ Value of Friends”by manu7 production in Youtube.com on Nov. 13. 2017.

I hustled to bore people!

Aren’t we all aware of the things to talk about when we meet somebody for the first time? Sports, weather, work… trivia only; and we worry that anything close to our heart might scare people away. This drift of playing safe, stonewalls everything we build to know about a person- if he or she is the right one to be a friend in the making!

Daring outcomes, I decided to let go of the slipshod gossip and went straight for what moved me.

What do you think is the best television finale of all time?” “Have you heard about the Pentagon’s recent UFO report?”

I would find these to be a great starter so long as they could stir up some interest for me. I would back away if it worked otherwise and that would save me some rancid moments!

Whatever…I thought either way I would end up happy all the same.

If I could strike a chord; I have won, If I didn’t…

Well! I never liked the idea of going public and make myself speak out to strangers in the first place.

Besides I abhorred the idea of putting down my phone whenever I went public!

I pushed myself to get curious about people

What’s a belief you have that has changed over the course of your life?” “What has been challenging for you the last year?”

Asking something like this helps to strengthen the fetters, or so I thought. Knowing each other’s opinion over things trivial without judging them might just about crush the challenge.

It felt good;I thought I have finally found a way to make the kill!

But It didn’t work out that way for me …

May be I was asking them to reveal so early about who they were or trying to be. I realized that there is no substitute for time when we think of bonding strongly to somebody.

So I pulled off those superficial stunts to avoid rejection and…

I didn’t have to wait for long to feel connected.

My take on this?...

Next time you’re partying, or hanging around with some one you might want to befriend, ask yourself what’s worth sharing and what’s worth knowing.

Get right to it only thereafter.

I decided to give it a try and said “cheese!”

Seriously! I tagged in smile on my list, for I think it is a powerful way to pickup connections. For one thing, smile takes you out of your head and defines you as profound as it goes. For another, you are no longer being dismissive or cruel.

Besides, who would want to be friends to some grumpy, irritable or crestfallen face?

So, I thought if I could connect to someone by showing off those pearly whites; why not?

I could afford to burn a little, if that helps!

I stepped out of the box

Am I limiting myself? I could easily hit it off with people some 10 years older than me. The only glitch was that I wasn’t sure if I would find somebody brave enough, to hero a dingbat like me…

And it felt like a half baked whiz kid idea fated to end miserably.

A fabled friend to many in the past, I couldn’t dare to stick my neck out and get along with 25-something people either!

I find no shame in struggling a bit; yet I couldn’t find that one soul, I was looking for.

I know this happen sometimes; but to me it happened one time too many. I did come across people who would share mutual respect for Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings and Jumanji. Next thing we know, we would be meeting for weekly brunches and all that pep talk!

But like always…it’s harder. I would end all screwed up. I can’t get past the feeling that I was the only person in the party without a partner in crime.

It just wouldn’t work for me.

Whatever the reason, I decided to stay put and not get discouraged. I knew that with enough self confidence, flexibility and patience, some day I will find friends – and get to keep them for life.

I wouldn’t queue up though!

Image source: Eren Li in pexels.com

Today, down the line with 10 years of craziness behind me, it doesn’t feel valley low. I remember to laugh, listen and be kind. I wouldn’t ever let no one who comes to me, leave without feeling better and happier.

I did though find someone freaking awesome with a beautiful mind!!

Life has since taken a coin flip for good. I hum with joy and stay stoked all day long. I wake up each morning wondering if my Octopus teachings did score a point!

What are you saying”? she would quip; “Friends are a choice to make and don’t come with a tag”; if I were to tell her what it all means to me.

“Why would you say that you get lonely when both of us know that we are not desperate to find each other every day of our lives?

“Isn’t being together and sharing, the same thing as friendship?”

And she would lit up the world for me.

Both of us would agree and smile but she would still chide softly.

To be or not to be…Friends surprisingly make you a happier person, only if you could be with the real ones!!

If you think that you are done with friends in life, it’s time you tell yourself a different story.

Like love, friendship is a thick soupy word and a messy business. It’s hard to be friends with someone who couldn’t hold your hands, or cut loose your heart strings. It’s harder to look for companionship if it comes with the shroud of secrecy surrounding it. Friendship is rather a stretchy word. It’s more of a life choice that you hesitate to fully buy into, fearing darker truth may come out later.

Friendship means something different every time we say it. It’s what a relationship isn’t. You may find good mature acquaintances but they don’t really get you good lasting friendship. At times hopelessly vague; ‘calling them a friend’ doesn’t help. Let’s just be friends” is a no less confusing either because it could mean anything. From bosom friend to pink of a crush, all it does is communicate what you never meant in the first place.

In fact, there is not one single great word for the kind of relationship that you have with the ones you love or loved. Give the requited attention a miss and the other person won’t find you awesome enough to hit it off.

Yet you shrug and say, “Sure.” And try again. But it’s weird and gets murkier.

When you think about it, you have no idea what it means to be with real friends.

Think about them and you will still touch yourself.

Perhaps ‘friend’ is a catch-all high sign that helps in ignoring bittersweet emotions.

Get into the Act

I grew up a shy introvert with terrible socializing barriers and was often shelled with embarrassing suggestions by those around me. Honestly, I did muster enough courage to try them all and overcome my fears. But soon I realized that it’s lot easier and more effective to be kind than to try to act confident.

I never tried to compete with the extroverts. I let them win at their game. Instead, I decided to invent my own circle—went all-in on being as thoughtful as possible and this is what I found out.

Everyone loves to hang out one time or the other, with the person who won’t say or do anything to hurt your feelings. But not wanting to hurt someone’s beliefs and opinions isn’t friendship. Real friends never coddle egos. They always tell the truth, love spending time together and never get awkward in each other’s company. Good news, bad news and secrets, they share everything. Gossip and late night wakes; it’s all part of lives in bonhomie.

Like everybody else, I too wanted to be friends with every single person on this planet. Probably more so, but not with someone who wants kinda attention that I’d prefer not to give. I had learned that coming out with the truth was way better off than using words that are so vulnerable to misinterpretation. When you tell somebody you want to be friends, but you really don’t, you are not letting them down gently. Mocking hits like a harsh acquittal. It hurts no matter how gently you have hurled the bomb.

Perhaps sometimes we get to learn about friends the hard way.

Are true friends hard to get by!

In university one of my buddies fell hard for a gal who wasn’t into him. She had a crush for a guy Robin who looked smarter and was perhaps wealthier. Of course, Robin wasn’t into her.

It confused and hurt everybody, especially my mate.

But it was kinda different too. Both heand the girl were doing fine and everything a couple would, except touch. Dates, long walks, deep conversations, partying ; it seemed fascination was blossoming. One day he asked her if she thought friendship could turn into romance. He would muse how his mom couldn’t stand his dad before they got married. A day later she uninvited him to a party.(Robin was going to be there.). What followed was enough to shake up things badly. Sullen moods and peppery behaviour crept in slowly. Finally he couldn’t take it anymore, and stopped returning her calls.

A year went by, and then one day both ran into each other. She came up and regretted. “Can we be friends?”

“What do you mean…?” he asked.

“If I see you, I’d like to come up and say hi.” It sounded more like she wanted him to acquit her of all guilt. Both agreed to smile and wave if their paths ever crossed. Fears of misplaced trust, broken promises and brazen lies, all fell apart in that one moment of regret.

Fortunately, he never saw her again.

That story tells what lot many people mean when they say they want to be friends, yet prefer kind of stealth friendship where deeper feelings never grow. If you are honest you usually wouldn’t want to bejust friends”. It’s hard but being real friendsmeans you don’t hold onto your emotions and actually make yourself available to someone who might requite your feelings.

Real life stories like this one grow on trees but payoffs are important!

Contemplating a relationship as a sack of rotten tomatoes when things turn sour, is like eyeing everything with serious skepticism. Crush aside, you should expect no one to be your real friend until you stop wanting romance to creep in your emotions. Before then, being around them will only rip your heart apart.

Funny! There is a simple fix for this

Nobody is hard wired to spend time crying out for someone who cheats under the cloak of stealth friendship, forever. And you need not hate somebody to realize that they are not good for you either. It’s nobody ‘s fault. The chemistry simply hasn’t struck. The slyness has prevailed!

So, gift yourself the truth! Firstly to be friends you need to ease off being sheep eyed. And in the second place, if you think of someone as your friend each time you look for favors; then honestly you are not ready for friendship.

Ease off till you could show some respect to your affinity. Pull up your head, put aside your phones and the world around you will no longer be clueless. Smiling, holding doors and saying hello to strangers; those powerful gestures will make you stand out. Seeing people, acknowledging them, showing some respect might mean you are charming and perhaps charismatic too. Trust me, the frenzy of warm hands reaching out to you, in turn, would leave you overwhelmed.

But is it enough to get you good friends; the real ones?

Countless times I have met people who didn’t click right away, only to be heard of later with a friendly gesture of sorts; sometimes through a mutual friend on social networking, at others maybe for a book exchange or casual film recommendation. These interactions spoke little but emotionally measured high. I guess, it’s kinda hard for me now to dislike someone who was thoughtful enough to have gone to lengths and make an effort to reach out!

Some people couldn’t make easy initial connections. If you are one of them, give yourself some time to dazzle. Once you think you have made the right choice and want to make a connect, reach out with whatever little beans you could muster to make their lives a bit brighter, even if in a small way.

Today, I gather I was right about my insights in the first place. Aches and pains not withstanding, I had aced the key to finding a soul buddy!! You may find my suggestions a tad basic, but that’s the point! If I have learned anything during my journey from a shy, floundering kid to a quiet thoughtful, self inventing, all smiles person who takes stock of the world in HD, I believe I did my basics well enough to have led myself so well.

If you are an introvert, don’t curse yourself for this innate skill. Hang on to it, for the one who listens, is rare and precious. Only a handful of us actually has this gift that sets us apart. Don’t chide yourself either, if you couldn’t hold onto to your lead. “You only get one chance to make a first impression”; every Tom, Dick and Sally would love to tear into you. Sure! But a lot has changed and this cliche’ is your buried past now. Chance to strike a conversation is just a click away!

How would you feel if you open your phone and a message is waiting from someone you just met, wishing you well for your upcoming interview? Or how about you sending a one-of-a-kind get-well-soon message to your ailing elderly neighbor?

Uh oh! No this isn’t about copywriting beauty and the beast. Privy characteristics such as kindness turn emotions toasty, takes the chill off and outwits brains and air when it comes to accepting connections! So do a little jig, get yourself out of the weeds. You will have fun and find joy reaching out to real friends.

Feature credits: ‘A Real Friendship’ by manu7 production in youtube.com on Dec.19, 2017.

Happiness needs a warm hand

A real friendship never sucks! It stems from mutual understanding and respect. It’s not meant to serve pleasure or purpose all the times. Rather a good friend is for friendship sake; the gold equivalent of human relationship. A lucky few of us might get a handful of real friends in our lives and it shouldn’t matter if they are relatively new. It’s their uniqueness that makes them amazing and priceless.

I have always found the intriguing connection between friends, happiness and longevity a bit weird but promising. The cutting edge made me feel zesty. I found myself surrounded by good people- people who never failed to remind me if I needed a haircut; people who complimented me and hauled me over in crises. Life never fell short of league of gentle folks. Listen, watch, notice and praise…these were small actions, but they helped me feel good for everything about me, admire myself and have strong ties with others.

If you are anything like me, rub some dirt on your fears, sell yourself a lot of quality friendship and trust me, you will ripe through a ‘golden-over-the-hill’ life. Try not to forget that real friends are meant to share concerns and confidences, build trust and not always be a sham listener or a crazy admirer.

Sometimes you cannot push a special connection between friends. It just happens. Two people come together, who find ease between them instantly and are comfortable in their skins. Laughing away at silly jokes for hours or talking the night away; a lasting relationship begins to fall into place between two people who understood each other well by simply being themselves. The spark wouldn’t douse even if the two “thieve” enormous pint or two of bourbon and celebrate!

So! where would you find the kindred-spirit that accommodates your mood, occasionally mimics intimacy and excites you in ways different than those you would otherwise face when spending time alone; quietly. Could you think up of an egghead who has all the signs of a true friend? Where should you look for one and know if that somebody is the big Daddy you were hunting for?

Taverns, bars, coffee shops, clubs, and even rec rooms are the usual joints that foster inner circles among people. Yeah! This is the tribe of savvy thinkers who will get you to realize that all that sweating, lifting and walking is not absolutely necessary for finding happiness. It is here that sharp contrast of unselfish indulgences change hands. It is here that your voice could finally get to grow some teeth. And, it is here that a good Johnny-on-the-spot could hammer some sense out of your successes, failures, opportunities and help you choose differently.

Someday you will make the naysayers jealous

I never realized that rushing lifestyles could reduce relationships into commodities so fast. It has left every relationship hanging by thread and every affinity slain of excitement. In all our complexities, we have shrunk to titles and net worth and eye each other as a means to an end. It is difficult to know who is legit and who pretends.

It all feels so punishing and fiendishly difficult…isn’t so?

Putting on a smiley face or saying right things and turning their back when the going gets tough, makes a difficult choice between deceit and uprightness. Props in hard times alone do not matter. A friend is someone who genuinely wants to see you succeed and is happy to see things go well for you in life; each time, every time. A true mate loves the person you are, with all the flaws and quirks and imperfections.

That doesn’t mean friends agree all the times. Rattling opinions help expand horizons! If your choice has been the right one, you will find yourself surrounded with people who share your values but warn you the moment you start falling off the track.

Worse luck! if your buddy wouldn’t help you to make the right choice even if that means saying something that you never wanted to hear in the first place.

“Don’t walk behind me, I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me, I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.” ~ Albert Camus.

Close affinities like good friends just don’t pop out of nowhere and mature fast. So, if you happen to have more than a handful of real good ones, you are indeed blessed. Making and keeping real friends smells of a rare experience. Each lasting friendship represents a world within us, a world that is not born until they arrive. And it is only when we bump into each other, a new world is born for us.

So, get busy being an amazing human being. Be a good one and knight hearted. If you haven’t reached out in a while to the people in your life who love and support you; learn to do so. The awe of discovering a BFF will smitten you for good. Perhaps then you could make out what Mary Tilley (94) of two children, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, meant of Evelyn Hodge as friend- they had lived next door to each other for over 72 years in Britain– when she mused;“Evelyn is great company”.

Someday you too might as well get to get a real good friend who celebrates life with you.

Till then, keep smiling and face up…

It’s never too late to walk off into the sunset!!

SWEET, NATURAL AND SINFULLY DELICIOUS – TRY THESE 12 SUPERFOOD DESSERTS FOR YOUR PEEPS THIS SUMMER!!

Creamy, gooey,  sticky and sweet desserts   with little or no milk, cream, butter or eggs? Sounds nightmarish for dessert lovers, right? But you couldn’t be more deceived! Decadent and simply delicious, these super food delights could be made without a hint of an animal product. Sparse in calories and dense in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, these foods have the punch to lift your mood besides lowering your cholesterol and reducing the risk of cardiac diseases and a host of health hazards.

New and improved lifestyle and eating habits have seen traditional desert favorites change into more appropriate versions. It is now possible for you to have your cake and eat it too”. These healthy desserts are here not only to satisfy a sweet tooth, but also be a energy packed fuel source to help you ride through the day.

Here are 12 top of the chart super food desserts that you can indulge in guilt-free.

Coconut Aquafaba Macaroons

Image source: ‘Simple Coconut Macaroons’ by Joyce Gan in onegreenplanet.org.

When you can’t throw-in some aged Parmesan or thick creamy burrata on any old traditional desert for an instant flavor enhancement, it’s time to get creative and think differently.

Of course, when it comes to decadent desserts, egg, cream and butter seem to make appearances all too often but would you believe that even a vegan dessert like cute looking coconut aquafaba macaroons, completely plant based, healthy, and high in protein could be just as flavorful and healthy? Aquafaba is the viscous water in which legume seeds such as chickpeas have been cooked. Due to its ability to mimic functional properties of egg whites, aquafaba is used as an egg  substitute in this vegan dish. To make these vegan macaroons, you need unsweetened, finely shredded coconut.  You want to reign in the sugar rememeber !! and finely shredded coconut  to hold together in whipped aquafaba. which works best with no more than two and a half minutes of beating when it starts to get foamy with stiff peaks.

Made without eggs, condensed milk, or any type of dairy, macaroons are a tasty treats and a visual delight. All the coconut provides healthy fats, which is good for hormone balance, skin, and energy levels. With base made of unsweetened shredded coconut, almond flour, Himalayan sea salt and pure maple syrup or coconut nectar, coconut oil and vanilla extract pitch in to take your bagel game to next level of flavors.

Strawberry & lime cheesecake

One of the most luxurious and delicious cheesecake, this cheesecake is packed with berries and super foods that are a warehouse of nutritional benefits.

Made with fresh strawberries in the summer when they’re in season, and frozen strawberries in the winter, this dessert is  light, fruity not too sweet either. You can pair it with strawberry sauce, chocolate, coconut, or pretty much any other fruit. A chocolate drizzle could be just as perfect for any occasion.  A fruity, dense creamy delight, you could indulge in this tangy lime accent dessert, where its weird sourness won’t let you turn away.

Shortly before serving, spread a little bit of whipped cheese cream on top if you couldn’t do without that silky delicate smoothness and decorate with the  strawberries. Sprinkle a bit of grounded cinnamon on top and serve with the raspberry coulis and you will stop frowning! It’s so light and refreshing.

Berry & Cashew Cream Dessert “Pizza”

Pizza for  dessert? Weird but you heard it correctly. Indulge your sweet tooth with this delicious, healthy dessert “pizza”. The fresh berries, hearty whole grains, and savory coconut make it a unique vegan dessert option that is full of so many nutrients to fuel your body. Layers of maple-cashew cream, toasted nuts and fruits make it the ultimate health dessert that has tones of awesome textures and sweet berry flavor full of frozen goodness. Try it for one of those summer barbecue parties and its sure will be a hot favorite to spice up the bash.

Yep! This tasty, healthy food packed with berry goodness, also happens to be vegan and packs in plenty of proteins from cashews, almond butter, and hemp hearts.

Grasshopper Pie

Image source: ‘Grasshopper Pie’ by Kristina Vanni in thespruceeats.com on 28/04/2020

This incredibly easy no bake dessert is packed with nutrition and is an indulgent treat that tastes more like a thin mint cookie in frozen pie form!

It’s super easy to make and boasts of a fudgy crust with a light-as-air minty cream filling which is fluffy with a  super fresh minty taste that’s not so overwhelming either!! Pair it with chocolate if you find the flavors too subtle and want that extra tartness to bring a zing of flavors- like in those addictive cookies.

And that gorgeous pastel green color is no food coloring but pops out of that super food protein medley! The protein powder is all organic, non-gmo, vegan and  gluten free. It  contains all the essential amino acids,18 grams of complete protein in every serving to be exact! Not to mention all the fiber, vitamins, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants each serving carries.

Try a few spoonful of the mint cream straight to your mouth before you even get around to pouring it on the crust. You could be practically drinking the stuff!!

Blackberry Poppy Seed Crumb Cake

Image source: ‘Vegan blackberry poppy seed crumb cake’ by Ve eat Cook Bake in pinterest.ch.

If you love crumbles, try this healthy version of a classic crumb cake with a wholegrain shortbread made from spelt (hulled wheat), nut butter, poppy-seed filling, fresh and sweet blackberries and laced with cinnamon. You’d love this because it’s forgiving and you could use a mixed bag of fruits to add zest to the dessert your way; even summer stone fruits like sliced peaches, plums or cherries could perk it up.

With a buttery crunchy topping, juicy veneer of strawberries, blueberries and blackberries and a soft airy inside, this crumb cake looks stunning and it’s super easy to make!

Chocolate Brownie Dessert Hummus

Dessert hummus is a blissful way to muzzle your sweet tooth. Loaded with nutrients, naturally sweetened and totally guilt-free, this healthy chocolate hummus tastes surprisingly like actual brownie batter.

The recipe works great as a dessert hummus platter with fresh fruit like strawberries, bananas, sliced apples, and raspberries. You can also spread it on pancakes, use it as a frosting for cake or vegan brownies, mix it into overnight oats or chia pudding or eat it straight from the bowl. The main ingredient in this brownie batter hummus is beans, and you could even try black beans, cannellini beans, hummus chickpeas or garbanzo beans. This is one of those deserts that could bowl you over with its tang of flavors.

Petha

Image source: ‘Delicious food of Raipur’ by Aarushi S. in budgetindianvacations.wordpress.com.

Petha is made by cooking winter melon (also known by the less appetizing name of “ash gourd”) in sugary syrup. Eaten as is or dipped in yet more sugar syrup, this delectable treat is made with winter melon and comes in different flavors and with unique add-ons, too. Discover the delicate flavors and natural freshness that comes packed in this confection flavored with pistachio, coconut, mango, or even laced with silky saffron. Winter melon is slated to have several health benefits, including easing off acidity and digestion issues. This soft fruity desert looks like dollop of crystal and is as pretty as it is sumptuous.

Ela Ada

Image source: ‘Ela Ada’ in myfoodmill. in on Oct. 4, 2018.

This is a snack that originated in the Indian state of Kerala and is quite popular as an authentic traditional delicacy made with rice flour, jaggery and coconut. It can be served for morning breakfast or even for evening snack with a cup of tea or coffee if you are an avid foodie and love sugary treats .Grated coconut and jaggery are nestled inside rice flour dough before being steamed inside a banana leaf wrap. It looks deceptively simple, but the banana leaf wrap adds another dash of taste to the little dumpling. Lightly sweet with a distinct fragrance, this is one perfect vegan dessert to cap off a rich nosh.

Banana & Chocolate Bread

Image source: ‘Eggless Banana Walnut Chocolate Chip Loaf . Simple & delicious ‘ by Deba @PAB in passionateaboutbaking.com on Ap.29, 2019.

For those days when you crave for desserts but pull back for you are watching your weight as well, this all-time favourite cake made with ripe bananas & chocolate is your best bet. This dessert is an ideal eat on a day when all is not well or on a day you’re craving for comfort dessert! And, above all, it’s vegan and tastes just as good as a regular dessert. Combining the sweet flavor of ripe bananas with chocolate or cocoa powder, this dessert is very similar to walnut flavored banana bread. You could serve this dessert with a choice of frosting, but could also share it as a snack over a cup of tea or coffee.

Cinnamon Roll

Image source: ‘Cinnamon Rolls’ in bakefromscratch.com.

These pillowy soft and luscious homemade cinnamon rolls topped with a perfect cream cheese glaze are the quintessential deserts treat and so easy to make! A  delicious tasting cinnamon roll pairs in  raw nut and seed flours with  cinnamon spiced puréed figs and raisins- all pitched in. Roll up a batch or two and store them as a premade dessert in your freezer. They are so easy to slice when frozen and can then be dehydrated for a warmed “baked-like” texture.

Feature credits: kitchenstories.com

Always making for a perfect hit, this delight of a dish can lift a bleh day and carry it to a delicious end. So fragrant and not at all dry or crumby these cream cheese glazed rolls are simply delicious and make for an unforgettable flavor punch.

Coconut Cream Pie

Image source: ‘Coconut Cream Pie. The old fashioned way!’ by Barry C. Parsons in rockrecipes.com on Nov. 17, 2007.

A super food dessert version of the conventional coconut cream pie, this vegan recipe skips the cooking process and leaves out the eggs, milk, butter and cream too. Instead of dairy, rich almond milk and young coconut meat lend the dessert a cream pie-like consistency and is a perfect delight for those with big eyes for sugary treats when used with chia, coconut oil, cacao butter and Irish moss. In fact, this classic dessert is a hot favorite among those who love the earthy flavors. Coconut in the pastry cream filling gives it a refreshing burst of flavors. If you love treats with flaky crusts, thick and creamy fillings and a fluffy whipped cream topping then this pie is just for you!

Banana Cream Pie Parfaits

This vegan banana cream pie parfait is made with a buttery cracker and sweet coconut “crust”, layered with fresh bananas, homemade coconut pudding, and a dollop of whipped cream. Scrumptious, natural and low on sugar, this is one creamy dessert that you’d want to miss! You could top up your parfait with plenty of chocolate shavings for truly delicious afters. Simple and easy to make, this sweet, goodness loaded treat is any time delight especially during the spring and summer, when you’re looking for a yummy chilled dessert.

Feature credits: kitchenstories.com.

It’s never enough!!

The taste of sweetness is a completely natural inclination and reminiscent of our innate longing for gooiest, soppiest, mushiest and above all sugariest! While juicy ripe fruits could be our   first choice when reaching to quench this desire, there is no need to starve ourselves of sweetie delights that can spring a moment of happiness in our life. But then… there is always bias to abuse too much of a good thing. It would do some good if you could find a healthy balance between simple pleasures and excess, no matter how good sinking your teeth in a delicious dessert feels. All you need to remember; ‘too much of anything is bad and nothing works well if taken in excessive’. Going to extremes risks neck or nothing.

So, sit back after a hearty dinner, laze off and relish the magical sweetness of these delightful desserts – guilt free!!.

Hanging out with friends could actually make you happier than nesting with your family : Here’s why

If you believe that spending time with your kids and spouse is the key to your happiness, you could be in for a surprise! People actually experience higher level of wellness being while chilling around with friends than they do when spending time with their family!!

It’s shocking but true!

For quite a few, happiness does not mean spending time with family and finding relevance in unpleasant tasks like chores or caretaking duties. People admit that they usually feel higher sense of well being once they find themselves surrounded by friends and laze around, rather they do when in comforting nearness of their romantic companion or kids. Strangely, happiness marker falls sharply being around with romantic partners!!

It’s so hard to believe but our brains are wired like this. We prefer to spend more time doing enjoyable activities with friends than with our family members. What more, the bond between friends gets stronger with age and eventually could outweigh the connect with the family. These relationships make a world of difference’ and even explain why and how often people feel sick, and happy.

Does this has anything to do with the kith-kin relationship? Why mere presence’ of kids, romantic partners on one side and friends on the other do not promise similar level of happiness?

Most frequent things that people do when in company of their romantic partners include socializing, relaxing and dining out. These are no different from what they do when in the company of their friends; but there is a catch here. They just do a lot more of these fun activities while hanging with their friends and virtually no housework in the bargain. What’s more surprising is that people feel similar level of wholesomeness while in presence of friends, partners and children, once the household chores and commuting activity is taken out of their daily lives.

There definitely is a lesson here!!

Family relationships that rally around housework and childcare tend to lose sheen fast and most likely will shed a lot of happiness quickly. On the contrary, when we create opportunities for positive experience and spend exciting times with our family, we get to appreciate those moments inwardly.

Surround yourself with people who make you happy

Who makes us happy? Highly likely, it is someone that we had spent a significant amount of time with. And how does it matter to our happiness and well being? Those of us who associate themselves with cheerful people have a happier attitude and consequently a better sense of well being. It’s one person’s happiness that influences moods of those around him. It’s a chain reaction. The closer you are to such people, the longer their disposition affects your mood. The longer you live close to such a person, the stronger the effect is.

Life is too short to live miserably. Get surrounded by people who could make you happy. Find ways to turnoff anyone and everyone who breathes down your neck. Remember, heightened happiness always relieves you of stress and the rush of optimism that follows could be overwhelming.

For once let go of things. Stand true to your habits and just push over that first domino; the fear of making a worthy choice- between family and friend.

Happiness needs a warm friend

A good friendship is one that stems from mutual respect and rejoinder. It may not make us feel good but then it’s not meant to serve either pleasure or utility. Rather its friendship for friendship sake- the gold equivalent of human relationship. A lucky few amongst us may have a handful of good friends at any given time in our lives and it does not matter if they are lifelong or relatively new. It’s their uniqueness that makes them irreplaceable.

Then there is a generally accepted connection between friendship, happiness and longevity. Trust me you are more likely to ripe through a golden ‘over-the hill’ life if you savor good health and contentment.

So, go ahead… sell yourself a lot of quality friendship and try not to forget that friends are important to us not only as a person who gives an earful but because a great many  interactions– largely unplanned-help build trust amid shared concerns and confidences.

Times spent in taverns, bars, coffee shops, clubs, usual haunts are the obvious examples that create inner circles among friends. They largely accommodate your mood, frequently mimic intimacy and excite you way different than you would otherwise experience when spending time quietly within a staid family.

It is here that sharp contrast of accommodating  changes come to blows. The post WW-II baby boomers who rejected and shelved the traditional values, today prefer to hold family in esteem much above the friends. Gen-Xers see family and friend as a distinction with less of a difference. And millennials live in a world where friends equate if not truly trump the family.

It’s not hard to accept that one thing that characterizes this generation. The amount of weight and heft it lends to friendship. For once the voice of we’ has grown more teeth and ‘we’ is now not always traditional family, a home, a child or a romantic partner. Sometimes it is good friends hammering sense out of success, failure, opportunities and …choosing differently. While family relationships are ‘often enjoyable too,’ these  involve serious and negative interactions too.

This does not mean that a typical family rupture is inevitable as turning points assault family togetherness. It’s just that the millennial generation does not fancy family as a ‘go-to’ frame of reference any longer. Maybe because  friendship has turned intuitive. May be making & keeping friends whiffs of a rare experience; one that ignores and pushes the family connect right under the carpet.

Close affinities like family just don’t pop out of nowhere and mature fast. Some would argue that at times it protects from negative association of friends too. Probably yes! but it’s a whole different kind of ‘we,’ completely separate from the friendship, that I am referring to.

Staving off monotony is not enough to score over family!

If we don’t unpack our experiences, we’re right on to the next thing and never really think, ‘What does this mean for me?’ or ‘How did this influence where I’m going next?’” Kelly Guilbeau (Center for Careers, Life, and Service )

Comfortably said, friendship is no more than a navigation tool to happiness but it’s uncertain continuity tends to shift priorities. Preferring people who give an earful to our voices doesn’t mean that we can be friends only with those who never challenge our thoughts. Holding hands and striking friendship even with a romantic companion  and kids could be a better deal to save the day.

At the end of the day search yourself. “Is this friendship right for me at this point in life? How good is to have so many turning points in my life that aren’t about kids or taking care of parents…but about friendship!! …You win the game, if you have answers to these nagging sores.

In any case you need a good deal of emotional intelligence to handle this. You have to know what you are biting into, what’s a deal breaker and what you are willing to let go. You have to know what matters to you most and when it’s time to prove naysayers wrong…for the choice is all yours!

To me, it’s as simple as that.