Tag Archive for friendship

Writing and happiness

How do writing and happiness go together?

On our journey towards living a happier life, writing can be a great ‘support tool’ – a way of keeping track of our progress along that journey.

Writing can also help us to get back on track with the positive changes we are making in our lives, when we lose track of the path we have chosen.  So writing and happiness can be very much linked.

There are many ways of writing: poetry, stories, letters to friends, letters to yourself, etc.  My favourite way of using writing to explore my happiness (and my life in general) is to keep a journal.  I would like to suggest that you give it a try too.  And don’t forget that a journal can include the things I mentioned above, like poetry, if you wish.

Many people keep a journals  in which they write down experiences, thoughts, ideas or feelings.  Your journal can be formal or informal, daily or whenever, following guidelines or random, and private or public.

Keeping a journal will absolutely change your life in ways you’ve never imagined.

– Oprah Winfrey

There are many good reasons for keeping a journal.  One of them is that it allows you to reflect on what your recent thoughts and behaviours have been – this raised awareness will help you to interrupt any patterns of negative thinking and behaviour and instead help you to create and maintain new, more positive, ones that make you happier.

If you aren’t convinced how writing and happiness can go together, via keeping a journal, here are some other benefits of keeping a journal:

A journal can help to clarify your goals.   As you write down your thoughts and ideas each day, it will help you to gain clarity on what is important to you; what you want in life.

A journal can strengthen your relationships.   It can give you a private place to express your feelings and clarify things in your mind.  This will help you to understand and be patient with others.

A journal can affirm the reality of your life.  Writing about life gives it more meaning and power.  Journalling important events adds substance to them, and provides a treasured memento to look back at later.

And a journal can simply feel good!  Perhaps by using quality paper and an ink pen it can become a wonderfully sensuous, delightful experience.   Alternatively, you might take great pleasure in keeping an on-line blog (whether private or public), and making the layout and graphics look beautiful.

Clients sometimes tell me that they don’t have time to keep a journal – try it for 30 days, spending just 10 minutes a day, and see what a difference it makes….

Write about your successes, things you are grateful for, what you have done, what you think about things, and anything else you feel moved to write about.  Look back through some of the posts in this blog to get ideas for some themes you might explore in your journal – there’s plenty of writing and happiness here…  Write about anything and everything, but above all, just write!

Good luck!

And, tell me what you think – share your thoughts on writing and happiness, and how you have got on with keeping a journal – what difference has it made?  – it’s great to hear your experiences, and I feature some of them in my newsletters (another place where writing and happiness go together!).

Leave a comment here, or email me: Mary@Coach-me-Happy.co.uk


How to have happier relationships with others

The 7th step in my “Steps to a Happier Life” is to Engage with Others, and it is all about having happier relationships.

People with strong and broad social relationships are happier, healthier and live longer.

This has been on my mind over the Easter break, as I have connected with those close to me like my Father, who came to visit.

Springtime is full of new life, and some people celebrate springtime, or Easter, by giving one another eggs – I bought my Dad a mint chocolate egg, which seemed to go down well! The ancient Zoroastrians painted eggs for their New Year celebration, which falls on the Spring equinox. Later, Christians began exchanging eggs as a symbol of Christ’s tomb (or the boulder at its entrance) from which they believe Jesus rose, alive once more, on Easter Sunday.

In many traditions then, eggs symbolise new life. And they are often exchanged as tokens of friendship, love, or good wishes.

Gifting small tokens is one of many ways we can strengthen our relationships and connections with others. And strong relationships become happier relationships, increasing our own happiness too.

Answer the questions below to get you thinking about your connections with others:

Which groups of people do you connect with at the moment? (e.g. family, friends, neighbours, work colleagues, community groups, charities, hobbies, sports…)

What other groups exist nearby that you could consider getting involved with?

Who could you have some fun with this month, to strengthen your relationship? What might you do together?

What could you do to improve your relationship with your partner?  See this website for some ideas:


Who haven’t you telephoned for a while, that you could call?

Who haven’t you seen for a while, that you could arrange to meet up with?

Who could you connect with more at work, perhaps for lunch, or for a coffee/pint after work?

Think about all the relationships and connections in your life – list all the possible things that you could consider doing to strengthen them?

One of the things I work on with my coaching clients is building happier relationships with the people close to them.  Amongst other things I help people to examine their behaviours in their relationships, to identify any limiting beliefs about them that are holding them back and to take action to make all their relationships better.

The questions above are just the starting point to thinking about how better to engage with others and develop good social connections, but hopefully it has given you some food for thought…

Good luck!

And, tell me what you think – share what you have done to strengthen your relationships and develop new ones, and how you felt afterwards – it’s great to hear your experiences, and I feature some of them in my newsletters.

Leave a comment here, or email me: Mary@Coach-me-Happy.co.uk