Body - Mind - Heart - Spirit
Being happy sounds like the easiest thing to be, but one of the most difficult in practice. How do you smile after a you spend a long day at work with stressful deadlines and then come back home to your children’s mess? Some days you might want to just collapse in exhaustion with a bottle of red instead of dealing with all your problems. While being happy all day every day might be too high a goal to set, these eight tips can help you be a much more cheerful person in general.
Fake smiling at your boss’s terrible jokes might be quite a strain on your cheek muscles, but genuine smiles can instantly lift your tensions. When you’re laughing, notice how your eyes immediately crinkle. This eye movement is the key to a real smile and tricks your brain into believing that you’re happy. Your brain responds with a rush of happy hormones and your troubles temporarily melt away.
The thought of going to the gym might send you spiralling even deeper into sadness, but give it a chance. Exercising has been proven to be one of the most effective ways to prevent relapse in depression patients. Apart from also providing you with a rush of endorphins, exercising can also make you feel a lot more confident.
Spending your entire day in one room is enough to drive a saint mad. When you feel the gloom setting in, try going outside for a change in scenery. If you have a park near you, go for a 30 minute stroll away from the noise and pollution of city life and let the calming effect wash over you. Getting outdoors will give you some time to think clearly and your troubles won’t seem so big anymore.
Studies have shown that an average of 5 strong relationships is really all a person needs. Instead of trying to constantly expand your friend circle, find those 5 people whom you can rely on no matter what. Make sure that they’re positive people who believe in you and not just ones that you enjoy gossiping with.
Helping others is always a great thing to do and you should never expect anything back in return. But you can be a little selfish and gain personal happiness out of it too. In an almost paradoxical conclusion, scientists have found that giving actually is better than receiving. People who chose to spend money on others reported higher levels of happiness. Dabble in some volunteering work and you’ll not only make a positive impact on someone else’s life, but also on yours.
Instead of a pair of shoes, spend money on a holiday if you want longer lasting happiness. The shoes might get scuffed, but your memories of the holiday will always be precious to you. Experiences also force you out of your comfort zone and will leave you better armed to deal with troubles in your everyday life
With all the different voices fighting to be heard in your mind, it can be difficult to calm down and focus on the important things. Meditation helps you clear your mind and teaches you the power of silence. The calming effect it can have also makes you a lot more impervious to pitfalls.
Most of our unhappiness is often self-inflicted. We create impossibly high goals for ourselves and when we fail to achieve them, we wallow in self pity. Instead, stop setting yourself up for failure and focus on what you do have in your life. Count your blessings everyday and you’ll find that you have a lot more to be happy about than you thought.