How to Look After Your Happiness
Happiness can sometimes feel like an elusive and mysterious concept. We all want it, and yet the actual process of achieving it is a little challenging and confusing. Luckily, there are lots of small steps we can take that will make a big difference to our mood. Don’t believe it? Try these ideas out and let the results change your mind!
It might sound simple, but practicing gratitudeon a daily basis has been shown to improve our well-being. There are a multitude of methods by which you can do this, but one of the easiest ways to get started is to keep a journal in which you write down three things that you are grateful for every single day. They don’t have to be big things like getting a promotion either – it could be your colleague making you a cup of coffee or someone holding the door open for you. In addition to boosting your mood, over time, this should help you to appreciate the little positives in your life even more.
You might think it’s counterintuitive, but helping others is also a way to help yourself! Volunteering is a proven way to boost your confidence, learn new skills, widen your social network, and enrich your life with a stronger sense of purpose. All of this leads to higher levels of happiness and satisfaction. Contact some local charities that work on causes you care about to see how you can get involved. Even performing little acts of kindness to others, for example, giving someone a genuine compliment, can lift your mood as much as theirs.
Look after your physical health
Your physical health directly impacts your mental health, so be sure to take care of your body. That means eating healthily, drinking lots of water, and getting plenty of sleep every night. Exercise is also a critical component, as it releases endorphins that make us feel happier. Don’t worry if you hate the gym or running, though, as anything active will count. For an extra mood boost, join a class such as dance, yoga, or martial arts so that there’s a social side too.
Spend time in nature
The simple act of being outside in nature can do wonders for our well-being. Fresh air, sunlight, and natural scenery all contribute to a more positive mood. Not only that but being surrounded by nature has also been shown to improve our productivity and creativity, meaning that your work-life might benefit too. Try adding a 20-minute stroll to your daily routine, or head out for longer walks when you have more time.
Be kind to yourself
As well as being kind to others, it is also crucial that we are kind to ourselves. Set aside some time for self-care – whether it’s a long bath, meditation, or watching your favorite movie – and try not to be so hard on yourself. When you feel your inner voice becoming critical, try to speak to yourself in a more compassionate and supportive way. Pretend that you’re speaking to your closest friend instead, and see how quickly your tone changes.