How we define happiness is complex and personal. True happiness can't be reduced to brain chemicals alone. And our feelings are messengers that give us important information.

But one thing that contributes to an authentic sense of wellbeing is having a sense of control over our lives and the way we experience reality. One of the best ways to exercise your power of choice in how you focus and channel your emotional energy.

There are so many things in life that you can't control, but when you learn how to regulate yourself, you have a lot more choices in how you can respond to life.

NLP Happiness Techniques
Happy woman enjoying fresh air

And it's important to acknowledge that feelings are there to alert us to something that we need to understand or respond to or learn. Most of the time. But sometimes we just fall into habits of feeling. When we're in the habit of feeling sad, for example, it might be time to ask ourselves whether it would be ok to experience a different feeling, just as an experiment.

In this post I've compiled 3 NLP Happiness Techniques that you can use whenever you want to give yourself a boost.

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Serotonin -- The Ribbon of Love

EASY

Imagine that you're standing in front of a person you love. Imagine that your hearts are connected by a ribbon that circles in a figure 8 -- first from your heart to their heart, and then looping back around to yours. As you imagine this ribbon of love, imagine that it's gathering more and more love, speed, and momentum between the two of you, creating a positive feedback loop. Share this love with the other person, and fill up your own love cup as well. (H/T to Nichole for this NLP Happiness Techniques.)

INTERMEDIATE

Instead of standing in front of a person you love, imagine that you're standing in front of a person that you feel neutral about. It could be a person at the grocery store, or a person you pass on the street. Again, imagine the ribbon of love, and allow your love to extend beyond the sphere in which you normally experience it -- without condition or expectation of anything in return, although also experiencing the pleasure of giving love.

ADVANCED

Imagine that you could find a part of yourself that you have a hard time loving. Maybe there was a time that you did something that you're not proud of, or there's an aspect of yourself that you just can't accept. Imagine that the part of you is embodied right before you, and do the ribbon of love again. Generate that positive feedback of love loop, and see what insights you gain.

Oxytocin -- The Butterfly Hug

NLP Butterfly Hug
pink butterflies isolated on white background and soft shadows

I teach this NLP Happiness Techniques to almost all my clients. It's versatile, and soothing, and you can take it anywhere you go. It's also a nice one to teach to kids.

Cross your arms across your chest, close your eyes. Imagine you're in a Happy Safe Place, and then tap on each shoulder in an alternating rhythm, kind of like a heartbeat.

BONUS: Dopamine -- The Circle of Excellence

The Circle of Excellence NLP

This is one of the most popular NLP Happiness techniques. Imagine a circle on the ground. Draw it with your finger. Then, throw into that circle all the positive qualities that you want to recognize about yourself. Get creative with this -- any quality you can imagine is de facto something that you can experience about yourself. Load the circle up with positive qualities that you want to experience about yourself.

Then, when you're ready, step into the circle, and experience all those positive qualities. Take them with you throughout the day, and allow them to make your day awesome.

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