5 Daily Happiness Boosters
“Successful people are simply those with successful habits”
We now know that happiness is the precursor to success, not merely the result. Happiness and optimism actually fuel performance and achievement, which in turn gives us a competitive edge. Happier means we are smarter, more motivated, and thus more successful. Happiness is the center, and success revolves around it. In that regard, it makes sense to invest in our happiness before we invest our efforts elsewhere. It’s a big equation, with many variables still not quite clear to all of us, but some actions seems to provide a greater return on their investment than others, so we thought it was a good opportunity to dive into a few of them today.
If you’ve followed our most recent posts, you’re probably still drowning in evidence detailing the profound effects of daily meditation. Not much else as been prove to change the brain is such a radical way. 10 minutes a day is all the investment you need. You should need no more convincing.
2. Practice 3 Daily Gratitudes
This is not only powerful, it’s surprisingly fun. You may catch yourself with a smile on lips as you action this. Get yourself a journal. Being fancy is not the goal here, you simply need a collection of papers you can scribble on. Every day, write three simple things that you were grateful for. They can be deep, but better not to. Better to focus on very simple, very spontaneous little things. A good cup of coffee, a sunny day, a nice conversation with a friend, a high five from your boss, a cute person smiling at you, a call from your mom. In several studies, after participants did this for 21 days, people’s brains begin to retain patterns of scanning the world for the positive first. Simple things, can make us much happier.
No surprise here. Exercise release endorphins & dopamine, both chemicals that play a strong role in happiness. As a species, we’ve been around for roughly 200,000 years. For roughly 199,950 years, nearly all waking hours were spent moving, walking, running, lifting. We can’t expect to create a new recipe so quickly. Inactivity will leave us weak, and depressed. We can get great benefits from as little as 10 minutes of exercise per day. So make it fun, and make the time for it.
4. Reach out to an old friend
Numerous researchers have found that only one characteristic distinguishes the happiest 10 percent from everybody else: the strength of their social relationships.
So take the time today to reach out to an old friend. It can be as simple as a text message, or an email. Bonus points for calling. Be kind and let them know of a good memory you’ve shared together. These things build momentum once you’ve initiated them. Old friends you reach out to will smile and reach out to others on their end, and a virtuous circle begins.
5. Random Acts of Kindness
Random acts of kindness have become such a phenomena that whole books now come out every year to cover the topic. They are popular for good reason: they have a strong impact on all parties involved. If you pay for the coffee for the person behind you this morning, they will feel chuffed, and you will feel blissful. Try a simple one. Give a stranger a compliment. Watch a simple form on their face and stay there for a while. Guaranteed that you too, will have a smile on your face.
Achor, Shawn. (2010) The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work. Crown Business Publishing