On a quest to achieve richer fulfillment in your life? While happiness may be relative, there are actions you can take every day to keep your mind positive and your body at its best. Here are 12 happiness activities to exercise daily, excerpted and adapted with permission from the book The How of Happiness by Sonja Lyubomirsky.
1. Express gratitude
Bolsters self-esteem; encourages moral behavior; diminishes feelings of anger and bitterness.
2. Cultivate optimism
Prompts us to engage in active, effective coping; promotes positive moods.
3. Avoid overthinking and social comparisons
Overthinking can sustain or worsen sadness; social comparisons can lead to feelings of insecurity and loss of self-esteem.
4. Practice acts of kindness
Helps you to perceive others more positively; kindness jump-starts a cascade of positive social consequences.
5. Nurture social relationships
People with a strong social support network live longer.
6. Develop healthy coping
Coping alleviates hurt and stress; finding something positive in a negative experience can influence physical health for the good.
7. Learn to forgive
People who forgive generally have higher self-esteem; forgiveness strengthens social relationships.
8. Increase flow experiences; be “in the moment”
Flow provides a natural high; it’s inherently pleasurable and uplifting.
9. Savor life’s joys
Those who savor are more self-confident, extroverted and gratified; those who reminisce about the past are best able to buffer stress.
10. Commit to your goals
Having meaningful goals increases self-esteem, provides structure and meaning to our lives, and helps us master use of our time.
11. Practice religion or spirituality
Spiritual or religious practice makes up the single-most used form of coping.
12. Take care of your body
Physical activity and acting like a happy person can both provide and enhance social contact.
By Lisa Truesdale