According to recent research in the field of positive psychology, there are specific actions and behaviors we can adopt which are scientifically proven to make us happier.
Consciously Vary Your Activity
Don't get stuck in a monotonous routine. Whether it's your route to work, workout regimen or wardrobe—be adventurous.
"The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun." - Chris McCandless
Have an Active Social Life
Did you know that married people live longer than unmarried people? Human beings are social creatures and feelings of loneliness and isolation can be very detrimental to psychological health. Life can be hectic, but don't forget to make time for the important people like family and friends.
Develop an Attitude of Gratitude
Instead of focusing on what you don't have, take time to really think about your life. It's easy to forget about all of the blessings and wonderful aspects of our lives when we're too busy focusing on other desires.
Keep a gratitude journal and make lists of all of the things you're grateful for. It will be difficult to feel bad when you're constantly aware of all of the good things in your life.
When you're busy helping others, your mind will be occupied and you will forget about all of your own problems and anxieties. Helping someone else feels good, and makes you feel useful as a human being. You can volunteer for a non-profit organization, donate to the needy, or even practice random acts of kindness.
TranscendenceEstablish a spiritual practice. This could mean attending a church or spiritual group, or practicing yoga or meditation. Understanding that we're all intimately connected, and feeling like you're a part of something bigger than yourself are integral components of happiness.
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You know the feeling. It's when you lose yourself in whatever you're doing and time is no longer relevant. You may experience this during creative endeavors or during physical activities. This state of being has been coined "flow." Find activities and hobbies that help activate this experience within you.
In order to be happy, you must constantly feel like you're working toward something. No matter how successful you are, it's important to set goals, otherwise life can feel stagnant and unfulfilling. You have unlimited potential and setting out to realize it will only make you happier.
Train your mind and your body with yoga