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8 Things The Happiest People Do Every Day

8 Things The Happiest People Do Every Day

When you get right down to it, happiness is the driving factor behind most of what we do in our lives. Once your basic needs for survival are satisfied, everything boils down to happiness. Money, work, family, relationships, each is a means by which to increase our overall happiness. So what can we learn from the happiest people among us? Check out these 8 habits of very happy people.

1. They Smile

The first thing you can do to increase your overall happiness is just smile more often. Our emotions influence our actions as much as our actions influence our emotions and according to a growing body of consistent research the simple act of smiling can reduce stress and improve your mood.

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2. They Offer a Helping Hand

When a friend needs help moving or someone around the office is stuck on an insurmountable problem, the happiest people are the ones most eager to lend a hand. Not only does is feel good to help another person out, but there is a continuous feedback loop that happens when you are happy, which in turn gives you more energy to do the things that will continue to make you happy. What better excuse to get that ball rolling?

3. They Exercise

Regular exercise is another great predictor of overall happiness. The runner’s high isn’t a myth, it is a scientific fact. In response to exercise, the body releases neurochemicals that make us feel good and improve our moods. On top of that you will look better and be more confident; a recipe for happiness if I’ve ever heard one.

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4. They Socialize

One of the largest predictors of happiness in a person’s life is the amount of time they devote to relationships with their friends and family. It all goes back to the fact that humans are social creatures. We are evolved to communicate with one another and build strong ties.

5. They Work Towards Goals

Happy people are also more likely to have a purpose in life. They set long term goals and work steadily towards them. At each point along the way when they take a step closer to achieving one of these goals, they get to feel useful and just, well, happy! This also applies to the beliefs they hold about what it means to be a good person. When they get the chance to do the moral thing or something they feel is right, it boosts their self-esteem even more.

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6. They Express Gratitude

Part of being a happy person is to recognize all the things you have in your life and to be grateful for them. The happiest people take time each day to either express their gratitude out loud or at least to themselves. Take some time right now to recognize all the little things in your life that make it worth living and be grateful they are there.

7. They Face Stress Head-On

Being a happy person does not mean that nothing bad ever happens to you and you never experience any stress. What is does mean is that when something bad does happen you handle it better. Happy people face stress head-on. They identify the things that are stressing them out and they work towards correcting them. They also aren’t afraid to ask for help when the going gets tough.

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8. They Remain Optimistic

Finally, in the face of everything, happy people maintain a positive outlook on the future. They live by the mantra “Everything will be good in the end. If it’s not good, it’s not the end.” Visualizing a positive future for yourself is something that gets easier with practice, and once you master it you will be well on your way to life-long happiness.

Featured photo credit: Nana B Agyei via flickr.com

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Last Updated on July 3, 2020

30 Small Habits To Lead A More Peaceful Life

30 Small Habits To Lead A More Peaceful Life

In today’s world, true peace must come from within us and our own actions. Here are 30 small things you can do on a regular basis to increase your overall sense of harmony, peace, and well-being:

1. Don’t go to every fight you’re invited to

Particularly when you’re around those who thrive on chaos, be willing to decline the invitation to join in on the drama.

2. Focus on your breath

Throughout the day, stop to take a few deep breaths. Keep stress at bay with techniques such as “square breathing.” Breathe in for four counts, hold for four counts, then out for four counts, and hold again for four counts. Repeat this cycle four times.

3. Get organized and purge old items

A cluttered space often creates a cluttered spirit. Take the time to get rid of anything you haven’t used in a year and invest in organizational systems that help you sustain a level of neatness.

4. Stop yourself from being judgmental

Whenever you are tempted to have an opinion about someone else’s life, check your intentions. Judging others creates and promotes negative energy.

5. Say ‘thank you’ early and often

Start and end each day with an attitude of gratitude. Look for opportunities in your daily routine and interactions to express appreciation.

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6. Smile more

Even if you have to “fake it until you make it,” there are many scientific benefits of smiling and laughing. Also, pay attention to your facial expression when you are doing neutral activities such as driving and walking. Turn that frown upside down!

7. Don’t worry about the future

As difficult as this sounds, there is a direct connection between staying in the present and living a more peaceful life. You cannot control the future. As the old proverb goes, “Worry is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it won’t get you anywhere.” Practice gently bringing your thoughts back to the present.

8. Eat real food

The closer the food is to the state from which it came from the earth, the better you will feel in eating it. Choose foods that grew from a plant over food that was made in a plant.

9. Choose being happy over being right

Too often, we sacrifice inner peace in order to make a point. It’s rarely worth it.

10. Keep technology out of the bedroom

Many studies, such as one conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital, have connected blue light of electronic devices before bed to adverse sleep and overall health. To make matters worse, many people report that they cannot resist checking email and social media when their cell phone is in reach of their bed, regardless of the time.

11. Make use of filtering features on social media

You may not want to “unfriend” someone completely, however you can choose whether you want to follow their posts and/or the sources of information that they share.

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12. Get comfortable with silence

When you picture someone who is the ultimate state of peace, typically they aren’t talking.

13. Listen to understand, not to respond

So often in conversations, we use our ears to give us cues about when it is our turn to say what we want to say. Practice active listening, ask questions, process, then speak.

14. Put your troubles in a bubble

Whenever you start to feel anxious, visualize the situation being wrapped in a bubble and then picture that sphere floating away.

15. Speak more slowly

Often a lack of peace manifests itself in fast or clipped speech. Take a breath, slow down, and let your thoughtful consideration drive your words.

16. Don’t procrastinate

Nothing adds stress to our lives like waiting until the last minute.

17. Buy a coloring book

Mandala coloring books for adults are becoming more popular because of their connection to creating inner peace.

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18. Prioritize yourself

You are the only person who you are guaranteed to live with 24 hours a day for the rest of your life.

19. Forgive others

Holding a grudge is hurting you exponentially more than anyone else. Let it go.

20. Check your expectations

Presumption often leads to drama. Remember the old saying, “Expectations are premeditated resentments.”

21. Engage in active play

Let your inner child come out and have some fun. Jump, dance, play, and pretend!

22. Stop criticizing yourself

The world is a hard enough place with more than enough critics. Your life is not served well by being one of them.

23. Focus your energy and attention on what you want

Thoughts, words, and actions all create energy. Energy attracts like energy. Put out what you want to get back.

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24. Assign yourself “complaint free” days.

Make a conscious decision not to complain about anything for a whole day. It might be harder than you think and the awareness will stick with you.

25. Surround yourself with people you truly enjoy being in the company of

Personalities tend to be contagious, and not everyone’s is worth catching. Be judicious in your choices.

26. Manage your money

Financial concerns rank top on the list of what causes people stress. Take the time each month to do a budget, calculate what you actually spend and sanity check that against the money you have coming in.

27. Stop trying to control everything

Not only is your inner control freak sabotaging your sense of peace, it is also likely getting in the way of external relationships as well.

28. Practice affirmations

Repeat positive phrases that depict the life and qualities you want to attract. It may not come naturally to you, but it works.

29. Get up before sunrise

Personally witnessing the dawn brings a unique sense of awe and appreciation for life.

30. Be yourself

Nothing creates more inner discord than trying to be something other than who we really are. Authenticity breeds happiness.

Featured photo credit: man watching sunrise via stokpic.com

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