Happiness is often framed as an elusive condition. People may seek true happiness for their whole lives, and believe it is impossible to achieve. However, there are some scientifically-proven ways to become happy.
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Exercise is one of the easiest ways to become happier. In fact, you may only need seven minutes a day to be happier (Inc). Not only is exercise a natural protection against depression, it aids you in your intellectual powers, in relaxing, and in improving your body image.
Another natural deterrent of unhappiness is sleep. Sleep makes you less susceptible to negative emotions and thoughts (Inc). Your mood will also be much improved with eight hours of sleep each night.
If you are feeling sad, it is common to want to spend more time with friends and family. Though it sounds everyday, it is scientifically proven that having close relationships with friends and family will convert into more happiness (Sparring Minds). In fact, it is recommended to have at least five people whom you feel close to in order to feel sufficiently happy.
Staying home too often can be a downer for your mood, as you might have noticed. Getting out more, doing activities with others, and seeing nature in its splendor will aid you in becoming happy. Spending 20 minutes outside in nature not only boosts one’s mood, but also one’s working memory and thinking capabilities (Inc).
Surprisingly, helping others increases our happiness as well. In fact, 100 hours of giving help per year (or two hours a week) can be the magic number to feeling better (Inc). In many studies, helping others has been found to boost happiness for reasons such as feeling more accomplished and feeling more self worth.
This might sound weird, but smiling, can help improve our mood. However, fake smiles, if not accompanied by positive thoughts, can make you more unhappy (Inc). Facial feedback is important, as when you genuinely smile, you are telling your brain you are not in distress.
Planning a trip away from your current vicinity can help in becoming more happy, even if you do not go on the trip (Inc). That sense of hope bleeds positive emotions into your consciousness. In fact, planning a trip can boost your happiness for eight solid weeks.
Meditation is one of the best ways to feel better. If the meditation focuses on the state of awareness without thought, you will get many benefits, including reduced stress, better focus, less restlessness, and more joy in one’s life (Researching Meditation). It is a highly recommended daily practice, with only five to ten minutes needed in the morning and at night for a happy day and happy sleep.
There are many ways to become happy, or at least to become happier. However, these are the main ways, and the cheapest. It may be startling that the quickest ways to feel happier are also the most natural. This is because money, drugs, alcohol, and other external items cannot reproduce what happens within us in the most innate of ways.
Inc.com. (2017). 10 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Incredibly Happy. [online] Available at: https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/10-scientifically-proven-ways-to-be-incredibly-happy-wed.html [Accessed 27 Sep. 2017].
Sparring Mind. (2017). How to Be Happy: 15 Proven Habits. [online] Available at: http://www.sparringmind.com/be-happy/ [Accessed 27 Sep. 2017].
Researchingmeditation.org. (2017). Researching Meditation. [online] Available at: http://www.researchingmeditation.org/ [Accessed 27 Sep. 2017].
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