By: Belle Beth Cooper
Throughout the year, you’ve been getting articles on how to be happier. Now, look back on all you learned with a quick summary of each tip:
1. Exercise More – Try the 7 Minute Workout
- Exercise can cure depression, help you relax, increase your brain power, and improve your body image (even without losing weight); and releases endorphins in the brain that make us happier
- No time? Try the scientific 7 minute workout
2. Sleep More – Enough Rest Creates Fewer Negative Emotions
- Less sleep means you’ll recall more bad emotions than good; won’t be able to remember pleasant memories, only gloomy ones. Less sleep also means you’re more sensitive to negative emotions such as fear and anger
- No more 8 hour night – people live best when they sleep between 6.5 and 7.5 hours a night, and women need, on average, about 20 more minutes of sleep than men
3. Move Closer to Work – Choose the Smaller House and Shorter Commute
- Commuting makes us (and our partners) less happy: it takes away time from your family, costs money, and stresses you out
- The longer the commute, the more likely you are to have back and neck pain, a high cholesterol and a BMI that labels you as obese
4. Spend Time with Friends & Family – Don’t Regret it on Your Deathbed
- All other happiness revolves around our relationships with other people
- Social relationships are worth up to $100,000 in life satisfaction, while a larger income improves very little happiness
5. Go Outside – Happiness is maximized at 57°F
- Spending only 20 minutes outside can boost a positive mood, broaden thinking, and improve working memory, creativity, curiosity, and problem solving skills
- Going outside can also decrease depression, anxiety, and stress, lowers the risk of diabetes, increases energy, immunity, and fitness, and reduces symptoms of A.D.D.
6. Help Others – Performing an Act of Kindness Gives an Immediate Mood Boost
- In a study about purchases, money spent on activities and others brought the most happiness. Doing a kindness produces the single most reliable momentary increase in well-being of any exercise scientists have studied.
- Volunteering results higher life satisfaction – 100 hours a year is the magic number.
7. Smile More – It Makes You Happier, More Likeable and Better Looking!
- Real smiling, with positive thoughts backing it up, can make us happier and more positive about life in general. It helps improve attention and performance on cognitive tasks and can reduce pain and stress.
- Smiling can also reduce stress hormone levels, increase mood and health enhancing hormone levels, and lower blood pressure
8. Plan a Trip – Have Something to Look Forward To
- Vacation anticipation can boost your happiness for up to 8 weeks
- ‘Light at the end of the tunnel’ concept, daydreaming releases almost the same amount of ‘feel good’ chemicals the real experience would
9. Meditate – Rewire Your Brain for Happiness in 10 Minutes a Day
- Meditating clears your mind and calms you down and is proven to be one of the most effective ways to increase happiness in your life
- Regular meditation has shown to rewire our brain structure, increasing concentration, focus and performance; it decreases blood pressure and can help you lose weight; it reduces pain, anxiety and depression; it leaves you calm and content with more awareness and empathy.
10. Practice Gratitude – Increase Life Happiness & Satisfaction
- Simply taking note of things you are grateful for can improve your happiness, decrease depressive symptoms and improve positive thoughts while making you more aware of happiness in your life
- Create a list of ‘100 Things You are Thankful For’ or take gratitude walks to practice gratitude.