On Happiness: Ways to Feel Happier Every Day

August 14, 2012 11:36 AM

Image via We Heart It

I’m a firm believer that a busy life is a happy life. That said, between work, life and love, there can be a fine line between busy and, well, chaos. Without getting too Eat, Pray, Love on you, I thought I would share a few simple things that can help make day-to-day life a little bit happier.

1. I recently read a great post on Apartment Therapy about the benefits of making your bed. Basically, making your bed every morning directly leads to “better productivity and can also positively impact your happiness”. Sounds like three minutes very well spent to me.

2. I’m a creature of habit and because of this (and, er, workaholicism), one of the first things I reach for when I wake up is my Blackberry. A habit that once led to potential early-morning stress has quickly resulted in just the opposite, thanks to Notes From the Universe. This is hands-down the best email that I receive each day. Every morning, I get a personalized, positive note from The Universe, essentially telling me how amazing I am. Seriously, everyone should sign up for this. There’s nothing better than getting a 'go get ‘em' note every morning, especially when the sender of said note is “The Universe”.

3. Hang something that inspires you in your bathroom. Alright, there's no science to this one, but this print works for me.  It’s one of the first things my tired eyes read each morning, just before I turn on the shower and get ready to start the day. Early morning inspiration goes a long way, I think.

4. Listen to the Strokes. Ok, it doesn’t have to be The Strokes, but studies do show that listening to music makes you feel happier. So why not start the day off on a high note and listen to music while you’re getting ready for work? (And if you’re looking for any music suggestions, Is This It changed my life, for reals.)

5. Every day, in some small way (even secretly if you wish), look for an opportunity to help someone else. Take an extra moment in the morning to iron a shirt for your boyfriend, call a friend and really listen, offer support when a colleague might need it (even if you’re crazy-busy), or simply hold the door for a stranger. The key with this one is to expect nothing in return. Kindness leads to happiness, always.

6. Call your Mom. Or your Dad, best friend, boy/girlfriend, whomever. Taking five minutes to pick up the phone to chat (not text) with a loved one will make you feel better and it will also show them just how appreciative you are of them (be sure to tell them that, too).

7. Keep track of what makes you happy. Take a minute before bed to write down one awesome memory from the day, take pictures, blog about it, whatever you like. But do take a moment every day to reflect. When you do this on a daily basis, positive thoughts and ideas will be top of mind, and you will feel happier.

…and giving something up can lead to more happiness, too:

Stop using the word jealous. It’s overused and not at all positive. So, rather than saying “I’m so jealous of you!”, why not instead say: “I’m so happy/excited/over-the-moon delighted for you”? Better, right?


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