Do you find that happiness is hard to come by on some days? Sometimes it’s just easier to find imperfections in everything and let crankiness rule your day. However, if you want to boost your mood and positivity, here are three things you can do to help you find your happy place.
Follow these three tips to help reach a state of happiness on a daily basis.
If you find yourself grappling with negative thoughts and emotions, getting outdoors and regularly exercising can boost your health and mood. Whether you take a walk, ride a bike, or go for a run, aerobic activity releases mood-boosting hormones within your body that ease stress levels and lift your spirits. When your muscles contract repetitively in exercises like jogging, yoga, or swimming, this increases your body’s production of serotonin. Increased levels of this brain chemical, targeted by many antidepressants, are linked to a happier mood.
Health experts suggest at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise five days a week or a vigorous 20 minutes three times a week. You can even start small — a brief 15-minute walk around the neighborhood may likely put you in a more cheerful mental space.
Did you know that the average adult makes more than 35,000 decisions daily? If this sounds mind-boggling (even crazy), you can Google it. Some prominent institutions stand behind it, including a scientific group at Harvard Medical School and Psychology Today. This may be why “decision fatigue” is a real thing. While having many choices may sound fantastic, it can be mentally draining. Every day, you choose from various options, from the time you select what to wear in the morning to the time you decide if you’re going to floss before bed. Not only do you have to make these decisions, but the choices can often lead to worry and regret — especially not flossing! Practice limiting your options — and not putting too much pressure on yourself to make those choices. You can ask yourself: “will this decision lead to major, negative consequences?” If it won’t, make a quick choice and move on. Don’t second-guess yourself. Save the heavy-duty reflections for more significant issues that arise.
Embrace the Small Stuff
You get in your car and turn the ignition…and the car battery is dead. You order your favorite latte…and the barista seems like they are doing you the biggest favor in the world. You call a plumber about performing a minor repair…and they laugh at you, saying they are booked three months out. Let’s face it; these annoyances can steal the joy from our day if we let them.
Researchers say one key to happiness is to notice and appreciate the small pleasures in life. Shift your focus from your to-do list and worries to the little moments of joy in your day. Notice the way your dog looks at you when you’re fixing breakfast. Enjoy the sound of someone laughing at something funny you said. Take in the smell of your favorite latte — preferably the latte the snooty barista served you. The next time you fixate on what is going wrong with your day, concentrate on what is going right!
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Sources: Harvard Health Publishing (Harvard Medical School); Inc. Magazine; Psychology Today; Kmotion Research