Cheeriness is linked to living longer, working smarter, physical fitness and an improved immune system, among other health benefits. So, with all these positives, why do some of us think so negatively about life?
It’s hard to pinpoint, and it does vary from person to person, but experts describe happiness as a combination of life satisfaction (or having a purpose) and thinking more positive thoughts: together this is commonly known as the good life.
Sometimes, short-term happiness can be out of our control when we go through periods of heartbreak, hardship or loss. But, at times when we can take action to make our lives happier, there are things we could be doing more of to feel altogether better about our present and future. Try introducing these top 3 tips into your life. Because, after all, happiness, happiness is the greatest gift that we possess.
How to feel more content in life
1 | Gratitude attitude
Throughout our childhood, we’re told to say please and thank you, and write little thank you cards in school. Why? So we become good, gracious and happy adults. Unfortunately, this attitude seems to dwindle as we get older. Forgetting to hold the door for a passer-by, not saying thank you after a good meal, or simply not smiling at those around us has become all too commonplace in our (social media switched-on) society.
What most of don’t realise is that being grateful has a domino effect. If you’re grateful to someone (such as holding a door, or letting someone out in a traffic queue) this gives both you and that person positive emotions. In turn, the person you were grateful to may pass these feelings on and will do something grateful too. Leading to a boost in positive energy and optimism all round.
Those who are grateful have less resentment and are usually happier people.
2 | Sing and hum for health
Humming may be one of most natural things a person can do to feel happier. Whilst it may annoy the rest of your family, singing and humming aloud has been said to improve your overall mood. The happy feelings come from the hormone endorphins, which is associated with feelings of pleasure, and from oxytocin, another hormone, which has been found to alleviate anxiety. Even better, the benefits of singing regularly can lower levels of cortisol, indicating lower stress.
Throughout ages, sound has been recognised as the most effective instrument for healing purposes.
3 | Have a hobby
Continuous work without rest or relaxation is harmful to one’s personal life and well-being. Having a fun hobby or learning a new skill isn’t only stimulating for the brain, but brings great happiness too! It’s all thanks to the feelings of accomplishment and self-confidence that often come along with having a hobby.
Don’t have one? On #InternationalDayofHappiness, why not finally sign up to that local painting class, cricket club or choose something that genuinely interests you! And, feel happier!
They say all work and no play, makes Jack a dull boy. It’s true.