By definition, happiness is described as a state of well-being and contentment. It represents a feeling of joy that energizes our lives and puts a bounce in our step. But life’s pressures can sometimes challenge us to keep a happy state of mind. Knowing how to be happy isn’t always obvious or intuitive. But it doesn’t have to be this way. In fact, there’s a variety of things that you can do to promote happiness. All it takes is commitment, dedication, and a bold desire to make happiness a true priority in your life.
When we experience happiness, everything seems to go more smoothly. We tackle life’s challenges with greater passion, and we enjoy a greater sense of control. Happiness encourages us to connect with others and show genuine compassion. Happiness has even been linked to enhanced wellness, which includes mental, emotional, social as well as physical well-being. For all of these reasons, knowing how to be happy is important. And the following 10 happiness hacks can help you enjoy this wonderful state of mind more often than not.
Bold Practices That Promote Happiness
- Negative Thought Surveys – It’s human nature to focus more on the negative than the positive. We tend to invest more time in fear and worry than we do in enjoying the good things in life. Most often, however, these negative thoughts are overreactions and irrational. Therefore, one of the best happiness hacks is simply surveying your mind for negative thinking. If you find yourself dwelling on something negative, rationalize it to see if it deserves merit. In many cases, it won’t, and you can let it go.
- Journaling and Expressive Writing – Expressing your concerns and worries is a great way to promote happiness as well. Journaling and expressive writing let us put these thoughts on paper and even play out different scenarios in the future. This simple task can promote happiness because expression diffuses negativity and invites optimism. And it only takes a few minutes a day to enjoy these benefits.
- Positivity Training – Positive thinking is not only a great way to promote happiness but also to boost your health as well. By creating a positive-to-negative thought ratio of 3-to-1 or more, you enjoy a better state of being. Therefore, one of the most important happiness hacks involves training yourself to focus on positive thoughts. This takes practice, but in time, it can become an incredibly healthy habit that occurs naturally.
- Controlled Breathing Exercises – Whether part of a meditation practice or performed in isolation, controlled breathing is known to promote happiness. Breathing techniques slow down your heart rate as well as any racing thoughts while enhancing your focus. In the process, stress and worries are de-energized, and positive thoughts are allowed to flourish. This is one of the happiness hacks that can be performed almost anytime and anywhere.
- Getting Back to Nature – From nature hikes to forest bathing, getting outdoors has long been recognized as one of the best happiness hacks. Being outdoors is invigorating and is an easy way to promote happiness. The fresh air and natural environment energize us and allow us to embrace a more positive and accepting mindset. Making this part of your regular routine will certainly improve your mood and perspective.
- Surround Yourself with Positive People – Never underestimate the impact relationships have on your life. Positive relationships can promote happiness, and toxic ones can completely drain of any positive emotions. Therefore, choosing friends and relationships wisely is one of the important happiness hacks to consider. The bolder and more positive the relationship, the happier you are likely to be.
- Participate in Social Events – We are social by nature, which explains why dealing with lockdowns and quarantines have been so difficult. You should therefore seek out rewarding social encounters in which you can enjoy. Such events can include a variety of activities that promote happiness. Those that allow you to connect with other positive people will naturally be the best.
- Be Active Often – It is well known that being physically active is one of the best happiness hacks. Exercise releases natural chemicals and substances within the body known to promote happiness. And it doesn’t require vigorous activity to enjoy these effects. In fact, simply moving around often throughout the day can be enough to boost your mood and perspective.
- Practice Gratitude – If you think about it, it’s hard to be sad while also being thankful. By nature, expressions of true gratitude invoke positive thoughts and emotions. Because of this, practicing gratitude is a great way to promote happiness in your life. We all have things for which we can be thankful. Expressing these appreciations will put in a mindset where happiness can flourish.
- Make Giving Back a Habit – Similar but yet different from gratitude is the practice of giving back. When we choose to give back to others, we enjoy a sense of accomplishment that adds value to our lives. These feelings promote happiness in a major way because they increase our self-worth and sense of purpose. In fact, of all the happiness hacks mentioned, this may be one of the most powerful.
The Many Ways Happiness Leads to a Bolder Life
The pursuit of happiness is an important endeavor for many reasons. People who are happier get sick less often and enjoy greater success in life. Happy individuals enjoy stronger social support systems and have a positive influence on everyone around them. And happiness invites opportunities for a richer and fuller life while increasing longevity. But by far, the pursuit of happiness allows us to find a greater sense of purpose and meaning in our lives. The happiness hacks listed encourage a number of ways to boost happiness while enjoying a bolder life. And along the way, you’ll likely influence many others’ happiness in some very positive and powerful ways.
Looking for some inspiration in your goals? This week’s Notes From Ed has the answers! And don’t forget to check out PROJECT BOLD LIFE: The Proven Formula to Take on Challenges and Achieve Happiness and Success.