Happy-ing Up With Images

I am pretty sure that color saturation increases serotonin, that neurotransmitter which helps us to happy up… At least it seems to for me! How about you? Do you love looking at bright images? Do you notice how color saturation affects your mind?

When I first started blogging, I used a lot of NASA space images with my posts, because I didn’t know that there were other sites with free images… Discovering those other sites opened up whole new colorful worlds for me! One of my fave tasks of blogging is scrolling through images on Unsplash or Pixabay to find just the right image for each post… That scrolling has become like a spiritual practice which really helps to happy up my mind!

Another fun practice with images is collage-making. Do you ever make collages? Some people get really artistic and elaborate with their collages, but mine are pretty basic, as you can see in the photo…

HappyingUpWithImages

This collage is glued onto my next journal cover, and I really had fun creating this one. I think it’s going to be one of my favorites ever. Lately I’ve been struggling with a Fibromyalgia flare-up, and my mind can get pretty negative, especially about financial issues, so in this collage I added some humor to lighten up the situation. I laugh every time I see that phrase at the bottom, “You need financial solutions.” Then I say, “You’ve got that right, I sure do need them!”

The meditating Buddhist image* in this collage reflects my current studies of the teachings of the Zen Buddhist master, Thich Nhat Hanh. Soon I will write some posts about him and his Plum Village monastery in France. In his book, Peace is Every Step, he says, “The foundation of happiness is mindfulness. The basic condition for being happy is our consciousness of being happy.”

When I look at bright colorful images I feel happy, and I am aware of feeling that happiness. The next time you look at some beautiful photos, notice how they make you feel, and enjoy any happy feelings which arise!

May All Beings Be Happy! 🙂

 

* Buddhist image is a painting called “Serenity” by Anyès B. ~ AnyesEmotionArt.com

 

StarFire Teja’s Three Tips to Help You Gratitude Up

Do you practice gratitude? Did you know that gratitude is good for the immune system?

Are you feeling more hungry and more tired than usual? Perhaps the winter cold and dark is getting you down? If so, you can improve your mood and help your immune system through these tips to Gratitude Up:

1. Make gratitude lists on colorful pieces of paper. Write down every little thing you can think of. These can be big things like mountains and sunsets or very small things like cups of coffee and glowing candles. These things can include people, places, objects, and also unseen spiritual forces, like God or love of nature. Place these colorful lists where you will see them often, such as in your kitchen, bathroom, and car.

2. Pick a color and intend that every time you see that color you will think to yourself, “Gratitude Up” and then quickly think of at least three things you feel grateful for. For example, let’s say you picked the color red. As you go about your day, when you see a stop sign or some red flowers, think “Gratitude Up” and feel gratitude for at least three things.

3. In bed each night, remember at least three things from that day that you feel grateful for, and then pick a color and imagine those three things glowing in that color. If you are feeling some depression, imagining those items glowing in a bright golden yellow shade, like sunlight, can help you to happy up.

You may have noticed a theme here with the use of colors in these tips. That is because colors bring joy. Check out this uplifting and inspiring video about the joy of colors here: “How to Fill Your Life with Joy” with Ingrid Fetell Lee. (This is an excerpt from her longer TED Talk, “Where Joy Hides and How to Find It”)

I hope these tips help you to spark more joy in your life.
May you Gratitude Up and Happy Up!

May All Beings Be Happy!