Who doesn’t want to be happy? Not only does happiness feel intrinsically good, it makes you more productive, better able to cope with negative emotions and even improves your immune system.
So, happiness rocks… But most of us can’t turn happiness on like a tap especially when we’re worried or stressed. Check out our list of simple ways to make yourself immediately happy and see what you can do to put a smile on your face today.
Simplifying your life, in general, is a worthy goal but just the act of decluttering your work and home life could help combat stress and lift your mood. The more stuff you accumulate, the more stress you accumulate.
How do you feel when you sit down in a freshly tidied home? I rest my case.
So spring clean, lose the dead weight… And feel better.
Collect memories, not things
Collect moments instead of things. Building memories that last a lifetime will make you much more happy than going on an online shopping spree. Go to a gig, go for a road trip, go on a sky dive.
Choose to build up memories rather than possessions and not only will you be happier… you could live longer!
Do your happy walk.
Step out with purpose, style and a touch of swagger. Not only is walking good for you, but the simple act of strutting your funky stuff along the pavement will set you up for a positive day.
Katrina and the waves said it best… “I'm walking on sunshine (Wow!)
And don't it feel good?”
Let it go.
This is probably the hardest thing on the list to actually achieve.
Try detaching yourself from a negative emotion or experience from your past or let go of something that you can’t change.
Honestly, this can take a bit of practice so it probably shouldn’t make the list. However, if you intentionally say aloud ‘that doesn’t matter anymore’ or ‘I forgive that person’, then before long you could find that the memory loses its power. Try starting small and work up to the big stuff later.
Strike a Superman pose.
Are you about to go into a job interview or feeling anxious about a get-together? Well, according to researchers from Harvard University, when people assumed an open, powerful pose for two minutes, it decreased levels of the stress hormone cortisol by 25 percent.
So hands on hips, feet wide apart, head up and look off into the distance. Your cape is flapping in the wind… You are Superman.
Endorphins are a chemical, similar in structure to morphine and they make you feel awesome. So, exercise is a great way to make yourself feel immediately happier.
And what is a great form or exercise?
Combining fitness with meditation, a yoga practice is the perfect to turn that frown upside down… dawg.
Get Upside Down.
If you haven’t got time for a yoga session, the simple act of getting yourself upside down could help give you a boost.
Do a downdog on your office floor, do a handstand… Do a cartwheel!
All you have to do is get your head below your heart. The blood will rush to your brain and you’ll feel immediately more alive and generally awesome.
We like to imagine that our phones make us happy but take a look around the train carriage at the faces turned down towards their phones. Do they look happy?
Make time to unplug and watch the world go by from a busy cafe. A little bit of people watching instead of staring at a device is a great way to unwind and decompress.
Snack on mixed nuts.
Just an ounce of mixed nuts a day could make you happier according to researchers in Barcelona who linked them to higher serotonin levels, which make you feel calmer and happier.
Almonds, pecans and walnuts amongst others can offset hormone imbalances in women as well as combatting anxiety and depression. It could make you happier but this dish does contain nuts!
This is an obvious one, but it is very hard to be unhappy while singing along to your favourite song. Even if your favourite song is a sad song. It’s still fun to sing along to at the top of your lungs.
So take a trip back to 90’s and bust out some Spice Girls or a bit of Gangsta’s Paradise and feel happy instead of Blue (daba dee daba da).
Counting our blessings is an underrated activity. Try starting a gratitude journal and approach the world from a place of positivity. Write about your life in a positive light and literally choose happiness.
Happiness isn’t necessarily something you have, it’s something you can learn, so focus on positivity and gratitude and start flexing your happiness muscle.
Spending time on others gives you a greater sense of well-being than wasting time on yourself. Finding the right place to volunteer that makes you happy is really the only variable.
Once you find your space and begin to make a difference in the lives of others, you’ll find yourself happier and healthier. Maybe this isn’t quite instant happiness but just making the plan will help.