1. Read a self-help book and attack the pain head-on.
2. Read a fictional book and escape to another life, time, or place.
3. Listen to music.
4. Play an instrument or sing.
5. Write in a journal and express your feelings in words.
6. Write poetry.
7. Write a short story.
8. Buy yourself fresh flowers.
9. Go to a museum and lose yourself in the beauty of art.
10. Create your own artwork. Paint. Watch the white canvas come to life with each brushstroke. (It doesn’t matter if you suck.)
11. Put together a collage of things that bring you pleasure.
12. Sculpt with clay – squeeze it, pinch it, poke it, mold it.
13. Build a scrapbook with pictures and mementos that remind you of happy times and the love of family and friends.
14. Call a supportive friend or family member.
15. Cry on someone’s shoulder – literally.
16. Browse the bookstore, letting your instincts direct you to a section.
17. Browse in a clothing store. Walk along the aisles, feel the texture of the fabrics, and take in the variety of colors.
18. Buy yourself a treat – a beautiful pair of shoes, a new handbag, a book, a CD, sparkly earrings.
19. Take a walk in the crisp air and feel the coolness on your skin.
20. Work up a sweat on the elliptical machine.
21. Lift a few weights and remind yourself how strong you are.
22. Play with an animal and pet its soft fur.
23. Spend time with a baby or a child.
24. Light sweet-smelling candles and watch the flickering flame.
25. Light a fire in the fireplace.
26. Curl up in a comfortable chair and snuggle under a soft blanket.
27. Watch a favorite movie or TV show.
28. Enjoy a cup of herbal tea or hot chocolate.
29. Have a glass (or two) of wine.
30. Indulge in a few pieces of rich dark chocolate.
31. Have an orgasm (with company or alone).
32. Get a massage.
33. Take a warm bubble bath.
34. Get a manicure, pedicure, or both.
35. Get a facial.
36. Go dancing – or just play upbeat music at home and dance alone.
37. Go for a hike. Listen to the birds chirp and the rocks crunch under your feet.
38. Cook a delicious meal for yourself or invite friends to share it.
39. Bake and decorate cupcakes as gifts (keeping one for yourself).
40. Do an anonymous good deed.
41. Bake fresh bread. Smell the yeast and feel the dough squish as you knead.
42. Visit a scenic area – a lake, the ocean, the mountains, a garden.
43. Plan a vacation to a place you’ve always wanted to visit.
44. Treat yourself to a makeover with cosmetics and a new hairstyle.
45. Make an appointment with a therapist.
47. Visit a house of worship.
48. Get organized to save yourself from stress later.
49. Sit in a park and feed the birds.
50. Go to a movie with yourself.
51. Go out to lunch with a good friend or just a good book.
52. Write an angry letter to your father, mother, ex-boyfriend, friend. (You don’t have to send it.)
53. Write an angry letter to a company or politician. (What the hell – send it!)
54. Volunteer with an organization you’re passionate about. Care for those who need your help.
55. Relax by putting a soft lavender and rice pillow over your eyes.
56. Burn incense or aromatherapy oil.
57. Go to a yoga class or use a DVD, and try to bend into each pose.
58. Read inspirational quotes or watch an inspirational speaker.
59. Listen to a comedian through a televised stand-up routine, a live show, or an audio recording.
60. Start a “comfort file.” Write down compliments you receive from others, and include moments when you’ve felt proud of yourself. Collect them here. So often, we forget the positive and overwhelm ourselves with the negative.