Being Happy: It’s Not as Hard as You Think
The pursuit of happiness is one of the main driving factors in all of our lives. We all want to be happy and content, after all. Unfortunately, so many of us fail miserably in this regard. We fall into a state of unhappiness that it’s hard to shake and we end up feeling hopeless. But it really doesn’t have to be that way. We all have our own happiness within our control; it just takes some time, effort and persistence to make the required changes and see results.
Want to be happy? Don’t know how? Check out these tried and tested ways of increasing your happiness levels no matter what your circumstances:
Practice Mindfulness Meditation
Meditation was once the preserve of Buddhist monks, hippies, and other spiritual types, but it isn’t like that anymore. Countless studies have found that mindfulness meditation, in which you practice staying in the present moment, can fight depression and anxiety, boost happiness levels and even rewire the brain to some extent. So, start practicing right now!
Whether you find it tough to be happy because you’re suffering from an addiction, you have a negative habit you just can’t break, or you are suffering from mild depression, there is probably at least one form of behavioural counseling that can help you to work out your issues, live a healthy lifestyle and find peace. I know going to therapy can be hard, but you owe it to yourself to work out your issues and be happy.
You probably know that getting a good night’s sleep is important if you want to be able to concentrate and avoid stress the next morning, but did you know that it can also have a very real effect on your happiness? One study from the University of Michigan found that getting just one hour of additional sleep each night would make the average person happier than a $60,000 increase in their salary. It isn’t all that surprising really because sleep does affect the brain and it’s our brain that helps or hinders us on the road to happiness.
Buy Experiences, Not Stuff
You don’t have to give away all your possessions and move to a monastery to be happy (although if that’s what it takes, go for it!), you just have to put more emphasis on experiences than stuff. When you care more about stuff, it is easier to compare how little you have in comparison to others, which will certainly not make you happy! When you’re having an experience, however, you’re more likely to be fully in the moment and enjoying it for what it is, and that really will boost your mood and make you happier in the long-term than spending all of your money on designer handbags and flash new cars.
There’s nothing worse than someone telling you to smile when you’re feeling blue, but you know what, they might just have a point! According to research, when we smile, we feel better and when we frown we feel worse. It certainly isn’t going to solve all your problems or cure a clinical depression, but if you’re just a bit down, faking it ‘til you make it might just work.