5 Steps to Enjoy Life & Be Happy Everyday!

  • wellsite
  • June 7, 2013 6:18 pm

5 Steps to Enjoy Life & Be Happy Everyday!

By Heather Phillips

1. Have a positive attitude! – Studies show that positive thinking increases happiness, mood and behavior while prolonging life, reducing disease, chronic illnesses, and more. Staying positive often starts with self-talk. Self-talk is that endless stream of unspoken thoughts – what writers call “internal dialogue” — that run through your head every day. According to Hara Estroff Marano, editor in chief of Psychology Today magazine, the average person generates 25,000 to 50,000 thoughts per day. Therefore, seizing some control over your thoughts is crucial. Be aware of your thoughts; acknowledge and act on the positive ones so they outshine the negative. Helpful ways to make the positive stick: be present, in the here and now; don’t overthink things as we trend toward the negative if we do; think about what you want and believe it will happen. Studies further show that when we even just think about good outcomes, it actually activates a part of our brain that stimulates pleasure!! Imagine that, simply thinking positive has an actual measurable scientific benefit!

2. Practice Smiling & Laughing! – Yes, the person in the next cubicle may think you are crazy but studies show that when we laugh we simply feel better. This is because endorphins (the hormone produced in our brains that reduces the feeling of pain) responds to laughter. The same is true for smiling. Even the most forced smile can genuinely decrease your stress and make you happier. Smiling relieves stress, boosts the immune system, boosts your mood, is contagious and attractive, AND studies have shown that smiling releases endorphins, natural pain killers, and serotonin. Together these three make us feel good. Smiling is a natural intoxicant!

3. Decide To Be Happy! – We’ve all heard of the saying “mind over matter,” right? Well this is where it comes into play. Happiness is a CHOICE! Ask yourself, ‘Am I living a life that allows me to be happy?’ If not, what could you be doing, what is your greatest gift, what makes you feel alive? These are the thoughts, actions and steps you should be taking to be happy. Want to spend time with your friends more; then adjust your schedule. Love working with children but you’re stuck working in an office to pay the bills—volunteer to be a mentor or at a church Sunday school. So I repeat, happiness is a choice, so stepping into action will make this come to fruition!
4. Stop and Smell the Roses! – Not literally, but take the time to enjoy each day as if it’s the last one you will have. Have gratitude for the people in your life that you love and cherish (including your pets), be present to enjoy your children, your job, your friends, your career and other life’s interests. So much of our time is dedicated to “I have to do this” or “I’ll get to it” types of mantra’s that before we know it our kids are grown, or our boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse/partner has had enough and moved on, etc. TIP: Take a few minutes every day to have gratitude for what you were thankful for—your dog’s kiss in the morning, the pat on the back from your boss, the smile from the neighbor to the big guns—your family and friends! I promise, you WILL see a difference within 2 weeks!!
5. Love Yourself! – Quite simply put, love yourself. Self-respect, and self-love are crucial to your happiness. This is not arrogance, but instead an acknowledgement to your inner self. To have any chance for a happy life, you have to respect and love yourself; realizing that you are perfect exactly as you are regardless of what anyone else may think or say about you. This may seem like a huge task—to love yourself; but one trick that might help is to think about all the things that you do for others currently or have in the past. These “loving” services (helping a friend, listening to a loved one, caring for an ill parent or child, volunteering to help others, staying late for your boss, etc) are a testament to your ability to love and therefore a reason to love yourself. Repeat the mantra “I love myself just as I love others” or something similar, and in time any hesitation you once had to utter the words will no longer be there.

References
Borneo Post: Laugh To Heal is No Joke
Whole Living: Beyond Happy
Psychology Today: Negative Thinking
Psychological Science: Grin and Bear It: The Influence of Manipulated Positive Facial Expression on the Stress Response.

2 Comments

  1. Tina says:
    Posted July 18, 2013 at 11:38 pm | Permalink

    This is sooo true!

  2. Couldn’t agree more! Stop, think, think happy, be happy…


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