20 ways to make yourself happier right now
Believe it or not, the key to your happiness is in your own hands. All you’ve gotta do is switch your state of mind. And to help you do that, GL editors teamed up with GL girls to come up with almost two dozen easy ways to snap yourself outta a bummer time. No Ben & Jerry’s necessary!
1. Learn how to make your fave dish
Always beggin’ Mom to make her ah-mazing lasagna? Ask her to show ya instead. You’ll get a confidence boost from learning a new skill, and wowing your friends and fam with your culinary creation is a guaranteed smile-maker… for you and your diners.
2. “I pop bubble wrap. It totally helps!” - Calise J., 12
3. Master a DIY nail art mani
Deck your tips in the hottest beauty trend of the season: adorable DIY digit art. Just a glimpse of your knockout nails will have ya beamin’ through pre-algebra. From polka dots and chevrons to teeny tuxes and team mascots, anything goes. Grab your pouch of polishes and get paintin’! Need inspiration?
4. “I watch hilarious videos to get me LOLing.” - Chyna F. 14
5. Check into childhood
When was the last time you tuned in to Elmo’s antics on Sesame Street or Ms. Frizzle’s adventures on The Magic School Bus? Instead of watching Riverdale, flip to your fave kiddie classic or let a new one entertain you for 30 minutes or so. It’ll bring your brain back to less stressful times when all it took was a giant bird or a bewitched bus to make you laugh.
6. “Singing in the shower always lifts my spirits!” - Johanna C., 13
7. Get selfish
You DIY all the time, but how often do you hold onto the things you make? Craft something beautiful to covet and keep—for yourself. When you slip those beaded bangles or pull out a cuter-than-words change purse, you’ll puff up with pride knowing you produced something absolutely *your* own.
8. “I love to imagine scenes with me and my crush. Embarrassing, but true.” - Emily B., 14
9. Toot your own horn
Now hear this: There’s nothing wrong with a lil ego boost. Show off that blue ribbon from the science fair, go out for ice cream to celebrate your new mile time or throw an I-got-my-braces-off pizza party with your besties. Not sayin’ you’ve gotta brag ‘n’ boast about every awesome thing you do, but it’s OK to celebrate those milestones. Yay, you!
10. “Going for a run clears my head so I don’t have to worry about anything for a little while.” - Brooklyn B., 15
11. Say you’re sorry
Whether you’re feuding with a friend or feeling guilty for a snippy comment you made last week, relationship rifts stink—and bring you down. Clear your conscience and lift your mood by offering up a sincere apology to whoever deserves one from you. Even if your move doesn’t quite smooth things over, you’ll feel better knowing you’ve done what you can. The ball’s in her court now, babe, so let the stress sit on her shoulders.
12. “I light a candle. Cinnamon apple—yum!” - Ashlee G., 13
13. Go on a mental vacay
Close your eyes and envision the locale that makes you blissfully happy. Maybe it’s camp (hello, Navajo cabin reunion!). Maybe it’s your uncle’s lake house. Maybe it’s that white house sand beach you’ve only seen on your laptop’s screen saver. Whatever and wherever it is, pack your mental bags and spend 10 minutes savoring every sight, scent and sound. Ahh…
14.“One word: Starbucks.” - Jen S., 13
15. Follow your own lead
Your friends are thinking the mall after school (again!) but you’re really itching to watch the baseball team’s playoff game. Who says you can’t have your way? Don’t be afraid to do your thing, even if it means you have to fly solo. The simple act of following your own lead will give you tons of confidence, which, of course, equals a happier you.
16. “I love to pamper myself with a triple B: a bath, a book and a bag of candy.” - Jillian M., 14
17. Be Silly
Get up off your bed and make a fool out of yourself. With no one there to see your ridic antics, you’re free to unleash a lil crazy. Slather on hot pink lipstick and smooch your mirror. Make up wild cheers for your crush’s next game. Set your iPhone’s self-timer and work it, girl. Rock out ‘til you’re doubled over giggling. Well, what are you waiting for?
18. “I go play on the swings like I’m 5 again.” - Madison T., 16
19. Get outside
Pack up your picnic basket and a blanket then pick a tree, lay out your blanket and enjoy a great lunch with your book.
20. “I just start laughing. It starts out forced, but then it triggers a funny memory and turns into real laughter.” - Emily Z., 13
What makes you instantly happy? Let us know in the comments!