7 Simple Habits for Lasting Happiness
Happiness is vital to our well-being and quality of life, no matter who we are or where we come from. This universal expression of joy has been prized and celebrated throughout our history, and there is a virtually endless list of simple habits you can do every day to ensure that you feel as happy as possible, as often as possible.
Here are our 7 favorite habits for fostering happiness daily!
#1: Smile and Laugh
Striving to be happy is a worthy goal, and it’s so much easier to achieve with the right mindset. Smiling and laughing are both infectious, and if you find reasons to smile every day, you may soon find that the people around you are happier as well. Smile at others and laugh as much as you can and you will naturally start to seek out opportunities to be happy too.
Physiologically, smiling also boosts feel-good chemicals like dopamine, endorphins and serotonin in your brain, creating whole-body relaxation and optimism.
#2: Be Grateful
Gratitude is a powerful emotion that can quickly bring joy into your daily life. By reminding yourself to be grateful for what you have and the experiences you encounter, no matter how small or fleeting, you can train yourself to focus on the good in life and find new things to be grateful for.
#3: Take Deep Breaths
Deep, controlled breathing (like that practiced in meditation and yoga) can help you to control feelings of stress, anxiety and restlessness. By breathing slowly and deeply from your stomach you’ll signal your nervous system to relax, leaving you feeling happier and calmer with regular practice.
#4: Connect with Nature
Nature has always been humanity’s sovereign healing tool. Science has discovered dozens of ways in which being present in nature makes us happier, from keeping our immune systems and energy levels in check to boosting our creativity and treating depression and anxiety. Exploring a beach, forest or nature reserve could even promote faster healing and offer you better quality sleep.
#5: Keep in Touch
Keeping regular contact with your loved ones creates feelings of support and connection, and prevents loneliness and the health risks attached. Reach out as often as you can, especially during times of isolation. Knowing that you are loved is essential to feeling happy.
#6: Stand Up Straight
Research shows that poor posture strains your spine and, interestingly, exacerbates feelings of stress and anxiety over time as well. Conversely, sitting and standing up straight boosts your energy levels and projects confidence and self-esteem, which makes you appear friendlier and more approachable to others.
#7: Exercise for Sanity, Not Vanity
Exercise isn’t only good for slimming and toning purposes. It also positively affects your emotions and mental well-being by keeping your body healthy, oxygenated and fit and stimulating endorphin release. Focus on increasing your daily movement wherever possible and you’ll soon feel more energized and happier all around!