Don’t Worry, Be Happy!
Understanding and improving happiness is a national priority and global trend. This is because happier people are more successful in a number of life domains, including social relationships, education, work, and health (physical and psychological).
I was a part of some amazing happiness initiatives last month. It started with hosting a booth and running a session at the Happiness Festival (March 10). I also worked with an amazing group of students on an event for the International Day of Happiness (March 20). I was honoured to participate in a workshop by Dr. James Pawelski, Director of Education and Senior Scholar at the world-renowned Positive Psychology Centre (University of Pennsylvania, USA). To top it all off, my own happiness research was accepted into the 2017 Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association!
These experiences have taught me a lot about happiness. I wanted to share this knowledge with you Sassy Mamas.
How can we be happier?
Psychology research has identified a number of things that can boost our happiness. Here are some happiness hacks that we can incorporate into our daily lives. All of these hacks can be taught to our children too. Have a chat with them about each of these things, but most importantly, model the behaviour for them.
Hack #1: Prioritise physical health
Our physical health has a significant impact on our mood and overall well-being. It is important to eat well and do regular aerobic exercise. We also need to make sure that we get enough sleep. It is easier to do this if we cut out caffeine, screens, and vigorous exercise a few hours before bed.
Read more: Why Walking Will Get You Fitter
Hack #2: Be grateful
Acknowledging our good fortune makes us happier. There are many ways to integrate gratitude into our daily routine. For example, we can list our blessings when we are sitting around the dinner table. This is a great conversation starter and will teach our kids to be more grateful too.
Hack #3: Be kind
Doing nice things for other people has many benefits. First, you make the recipient happier. Then, you feel good about it! Giving and kindness doesn’t have to be extravagant – a thoughtful gesture, a small gift, a compliment, or even a smile will work wonders.
Hack #4: Connect with others
Spending time with loved ones makes us happier – it can help us live longer too. It’s important that we make the time to connect with our friends and family. And remember to disconnect while you connect. Put away your phone and other distractions to make the most of your time.
Hack #5: Practice self-care
We often spend our time looking after others while neglecting ourselves. It’s important to make a few moments each day to practice self-care. Some ideas include taking a hot bath (or a cool swim), learning new skills, meditating, or connecting with others.