17 Little Things You Can Do to Be Happy

Seriously. Pick one. Do it. Feel happier.

We all want to be happy. We’re constantly moving toward pleasure and away from pain without really thinking about it. That’s okay, it’s human nature. But thinking there’s a perfect state of unchanging, forever happiness (yikes!), that’s a recipe for disappointment.

So instead of striving for a permanent state of happy, try doing a few small things that will make you smile and warm your heart. Make tiny shifts in your day by employing simple practices you can do anywhere, anytime. String enough of these together, and you might just find the happiness you seek! But let’s start one happy moment at a time.

To get you started, we’ve gathered some of our favorite happiness tips from some of our favorite happiness books. They’re all easy, simple, and fun. Try one and get happy, right now!
 

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FROM Healthy, Happy YOU

1. GO TO SLEEP FIFTEEN MINUTES EARLIER
“There is no greater productivity boost than sleep. Sleep restores the key mental resources of willpower, decision-making, and active initiative. Sleep rebalances hormones for steady energy. Sleep allows your subconscious to make new connections that will support your problem-solving. Even just fifteen minutes more sleep can make a big difference.”

2. SIT WITH YOUR TEA OR COFFEE
“Make your drink of choice, then sit down for a few minutes. No phone, no paper, just sit and think about your week. Source physical energy from your drink and mental energy from your moment of stillness.”

3. NOTICE AN ANIMAL, TREE, OR FLOWER
“Nature is amazing, but we rarely notice just how amazing. Watch a documentary or, even better, go outside and explore nature. Find a flower, a tree, or an animal and look up its name.”

4. CHECK YOUR PHONE ONLY EVERY HALF HOUR
“The fight for mental real estate is fierce. We’re constantly assaulted by beeps, pop-ups, vibrations, and advertisements. When we get into a meeting, we check our phone. When we’re cooking dinner, we stop to check our phone. We can’t control the environment, but we can control ourselves. Limit yourself to phone checks only every half hour and see what happens to your productivity.”

5. TELL SOMEONE YOU LOVE THEM
“Putting our feelings into words and expressing them to our loved ones is something many of us struggle with. But don’t take love for granted—reminding the loved ones in your life (and yourself) that you love them by saying so not only makes you and them feel good, but will also strengthen the bond between you. Today, tell someone in your life you love them.”

6. WEAR WHAT MAKES YOU FEEL GOOD
“What you wear can have a really big impact on your mood, self-image, and confidence. Put a little extra effort into what you wear today and choose clothes that make you feel really good. Be it that new dress, a smart suit, warm woolen socks, or your favorite old T-shirt.”


FROM Do One Thing Every Day That Makes You Happy

7. SMILE … AS SOON AS YOU WAKE UP

8. LAUGH
“A good laugh is sunshine in a house.” ~William Makepeace Thackeray

9. ENJOY MUSIC, LITERATURE, ART, CONVERSATION
“Every day we should hear at least one little song, read one good poem, see one exquisite picture, and, if possible, speak a few sensible words.” ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

10. PLAY!
“It’s good to play, and you must keep in practice.” ~Jerry Seinfeld

11. SMILE … IN THE MIRROR


FROM How to Be Happy (Or At Least Less Sad)

12. LIST THE NEGATIVE THOUGHTS YOU HAVE MOST OFTEN … GIVE THEM A MORE POSITIVE SPIN
“Example: I hate being alone … I’d like to meet new people.”

13. BREATHE IN, BREATHE OUT
“Breathing is really easy, but it’s also really easy to forget how to do it properly. A lot of us take short shallow breaths without realizing, or forget to use both our nose and mouth. The key is to inhale slowly through your nose and exhale slowly through your mouth. It also helps to exhale for slightly longer. A good trick is to count to three as you inhale and five as you exhale. Breathing properly is one of the best ways to calm yourself down. Try it for a minute next time you’re feeling anxious. The best part is you can do this anywhere!”

14. CURATE YOUR TV TIME
“Make a TV schedule for the next week. Choose only one show for each day that you really want to watch. If there isn’t one, leave that day blank. Watch only these shows.”

15. EAT MINDFULLY (CHOCOLATE MEDITATION)
“Sit comfortably, away from distractions. Take a piece of chocolate in your hand. Really look at it. Feel its weight and texture. Look at its color, or colors. Notice how you are dying to shove it into your mouth. Don’t. Smell it instead. Did you know it smelled like this? OK, put it slowly into your mouth. Let it sit on your tongue. Does the flavor change as it melts? Are there more flavors than you thought? Hold it in your mouth as long as you can. Does this feel weird? OK, you can eat it.”

16. ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE LESS THAN PERFECT
“Draw or list your ‘imperfections’ on a page. Spoiler alert: imperfections are the things that make you you. You just made a list of things to embrace, celebrate, and be proud of.”

17. 20-MINUTE WORRY WINDOW
“Choose a time when you have 20 minutes free. This is your worry window. Worry intensely about everything. Make sure you worry for the full 20 minutes. If you stop worrying before the time is up, you should worry about why you’re not worrying. Seriously, this is your one chance to worry today. Do not let yourself worry outside this window. If you worry about anything outside the window, make a mental note to worry about it during the next available window.”

 

 

 

Photo Credit: Vesna Andjic/iStock


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One response to “17 Little Things You Can Do to Be Happy”

  1. Anton Ossa says:

    UNFORTUNATELY, BEING HAPPY ALL THE TIME CAN ITSELF BECOME A PROBLEM OVER TIME!


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