14 Mar Want To Be Happier? Try These Simple Steps
Happiness isn’t luck. It isn’t something that happens to others. It isn’t something you can buy or wish for and certainly not something you should be envious of. In fact, just like everything else worth having, happiness is a practice. And it is our choice – each moment to either treat happiness like a bank account and either make deposits or withdrawals.
Before you go rolling your eyes and say – “Yeah, I’ve heard this before.”, read on and you will see that 5 simple shifts in your life can be life changing. Are you ready?
The Practice of Happiness in 5 Simple Steps
- GET MORE SLEEP! We cannot stress this enough. Most of us are sleep deprived and the sad truth is that we are used to feeling depleted and stressed. But getting enough sleep (7 to 8 hours per night) will improve your mood, boost your immune system, help you lose weight, make your more creative and definitely enhance your productivity. So put getting enough sleep at the top of the happiness list!
- EXERCISE REGULARLY. This goes hand in hand with getting enough sleep. Getting enough sleep will give you the energy to exercise and in turn, exercising regularly will help you sleep better. A win-win. Studies show that regular exercise (at least 30 minutes 4 times a week) promotes happiness and has an anti-depressant effect. Like sleep, exercise will improve your mood, health, productivity and overall health.
- EAT HEALTHY WHOLE FOODS. The mantra here is simple. You really are what you eat. So, choose to eat healthy, colorful, nutritious whole foods. Nature really does know what it’s doing and is much more trustworthy than a laboratory that produces non-foods, wraps them up and sells us on how good they are for us. Don’t buy it. If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it. Stay away from fast, fried, sugary and empty calorie foods, reduce your meat intake and up your fruits, veggies, legumes, nuts and seeds.
- MANAGE YOUR STRESS. There is no bigger happiness zapper than stress. Managing stress can mean a lot of things, but some immediate stress busting techniques include, taking deep breaths, meditating, listening to soothing music and carving out quiet time. Managing stress in the big picture requires you to pay attention to things like time management (this is a big one), choosing healthy relationships, setting boundaries, making time for enjoyable things and of course, getting enough sleep, exercise and eating well. (You see how this is all connected?)
- LIVE WITH PURPOSE. Whether you choose to make your career intertwined with your passions, or if you work in order to be able to do the things you love, having purpose each day is a key ingredient to being happy. Maybe that means finding ways to serve and give back to the world through your work or through volunteering and giving back to your community. Maybe that means spending time with your family and friends. Maybe that means tapping into your creative talents. Whatever it is, pay attention to that nagging inner voice that wants and needs to be expressed. We are all here for a reason, finding yours is your birth right and your job!
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Until the Next Time!
Vivienne & Andrew