There's an old saying: “If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.” In many ways, happiness is no different. You have the power to make yourself happy. Try these seven simple ways to enhance the quality of your life — starting now!
Make an effort to connect with your friends on a regular basis. Talking on the phone is good, but personal contact is even better, so pick up the phone and make a lunch date for next week with a good friend. You’ll laugh, catch up and feel better with little effort.
2. Practice Gratitude
Gratitude breeds joy. According to a study at the University of California Davis, people who make a list of things they're thankful for feel more optimistic about the week ahead and are generally more satisfied with their lives. Try recording happy events and things you're grateful for once a week. Want to feel happy? Give thanks.
3. Get Moving
Physical activity releases endorphins that can boost your mood. It doesn't take a marathon or even more time on the treadmill to feel happier. Your mood can change with as little of 10 minutes of physical activity. Let your inner child out to play. Try popping in an upbeat CD and dancing around the room, taking a quick walk to the store or hitting a tennis ball against the garage — then watch your spirits rise.
4. Give Someone a Gift
Want to feel happier? Skip the purchase for yourself and buy something for someone else. Watching someone’s excitement about opening an unexpected gift is priceless.
If you’re looking to give your time, why not try volunteering? There are plenty of opportunities from cleaning up parks to building houses, so there’s bound to be a sure fit for you somewhere!
5. Appreciate the Small Stuff
A sunny day, lunch with a friend, anything. Practice appreciating the little things, and you'll find yourself happier in general. Regularly pause and take note of a good thing you’re experiencing in the moment to find yourself happy more often.
6. Forgive Someone
Holding onto grudges may be holding back your happiness. Bitterness can compromise your sense of peace and negatively impact your health. If joy is what you’re after, forgive others.
7. Do Good Deeds
Performing random acts of kindness actually boosts your sense of wellbeing and happiness. Researchers found that performing five random acts of kindness in a given day gave people the maximum “happiness boost.” Tomorrow, why not try yielding to another car in traffic, doing volunteer work or buying a stranger’s coffee? Come up with a couple of other ideas that fit your schedule, and you could hit the magic number five in no time.