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Five Ways to Inject More Happiness Into Your Life

Updated on October 4, 2014
My 47th Birthday
My 47th Birthday

The Search for Happiness

Ever since I was 20 years old, I have been making new year's resolutions. I make them every year with the intention of accomplishing certain goals and expectations that I set out for myself because I believe that it will somehow add to my happiness. Of course like a lot of things in life, it's easier said than done and for many years, I would consider myself a failure to some degree.

As the years passed, I went through the normal ups and downs of life with the occasional traumatic experience sprinkled in for variety and I've even felt extreme happiness at times. However it wasn't until a couple of years ago that I decided to do something different because even after all these years, I still didn't feel quite happy. A wise man once told me a few years ago that if I kept doing the same thing, I will most likely get the same results. I looked back at my life and thought how true it was. I made the same resolutions year after year, worked hard the exact same way, and nothing really changed. And if it did, I certainly wasn't any happier.

So I decided to take a different approach and changed my way of thinking. Instead of always looking at where I'd like to be in the future, I focused on each day as if it were an important project and treated each day as if it were my last. In the process, I came up with more than a few ways that actually added to the quality of my life as well as contributing to my happiness. Instead of bombarding you with 50 (because that's how much I originally wrote on my list), I will share with you five things that I do to make me just a little happier every day.

*Photos taken by myself

The Happiness Project

If you are trying to inject just a little more happiness into your life, you might want to pick up this great book. Unlike other self-help book authors, the author of this book wasn't that depressed to begin with. In fact she had everything she wished for in life.

She simply felt that there was something more and began an experiment to search for the meaning of happiness.

If you'd like more information on the book, I've written a review about it.

CLICK HERE to see the review of this book : The Happiness Project-Not Your Typical Self-Help Book

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun
The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

Am amazing book that will make you laugh while helping you find more ways to inject happiness into your life. I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed reading this gem of a book.

 
Try Something New
Try Something New

Learning Something New

Three years ago I decided that I wanted to master photoshop. Not only that, I wanted to use it to create virtual clothing for an online game and make money with it. People were telling me that the competition is tough especially with all the graphic designers out there, who already know how to use photoshop and that I should perhaps try something else like sketching or learning how to swim ( I've lived in Hawaii for 20 years and I can't swim ).

Instead of taking their advice, I spent a large amount of money on photoshop, purchased a really thick photoshop course and spent three months learning how to do use photoshop to create virtual clothes.

In the end, the effort really paid off. After just a year after I made the decision to become a virtual designer, I had actually started making money as well as my virtual brand becoming quite famous in the game. I was asked to do virtual fashion shows, interviews and participate in charity events. I was ecstatic to say the least but what it did for me was beyond the money.

With the profit I made, I was able to take my family on holidays and I was able to help raise money for charities that were close to my heart. Learning something new gave me the confidence I needed to go out into the world and not be afraid to try new things.

Gluten-free Strawberry Cupcakes
Gluten-free Strawberry Cupcakes | Source
This is a Cookbook: Recipes For Real Life
This is a Cookbook: Recipes For Real Life

This duo really know how to cook and This Is A Cookbook has to be one of the most visually appealing cookbook to date. As soon as I flipped through this cookbook at the bookstore, I knew I had to buy it.

The design is edgy and modern, the food is on trend and easy to make. I love the no-nonsense approach that these guys take and it's such a pleasure browsing through this fantastic cookbook made for real life.

 

Try Out a New Recipe

Humans seem to be creatures of habit and I was no exception. Although I liked to experience new things, I always found comfort in familiarity such as making the same dishes I already knew how to make. I knew they would always taste good and I pretty much knew how to make those dishes from memory.

For some, experimenting with food comes easy but for others like myself, I was always hesitant as I never knew how something was going to turn out. I was afraid of failure and I hated wasting food! I knew that I failed at making a simple cupcake a countless number of times but I also knew that unless I tried again, I would never succeed at making one for the rest of my life.

You see, I have an obsession for cupcakes so it's almost a sin not to be able to make them myself. This year, I took on the task of making some green tea cupcakes. Sure it took some practice, but I can now proudly boast to my friends that I can make some darn good cupcakes.

Tomato Salad at Alan Wong's
Tomato Salad at Alan Wong's

Experience New Taste Sensations

Do you find yourself ordering the same dishes at your favorite restaurants? I never realized it until recently that I was actually guilty of it myself and it came surprisingly came as a shock because I've always considered myself to be on the adventurous side when it came to food.

When I travel, the first thing I am drawn to are the unfamiliar. However at my favorite restaurants, I'm always going back to my favorite dishes.

Last year I was fortunate to find the time and money for a trip to Hawaii to see my family. My sister and her boyfriend surprised me by throwing a birthday party for me at Alan Wong's, one of my favorite restaurants in the world. Since I've been going to Alan Wong's for years now, I realized that I kept ordering my favorite dishes so although I was always content with my choice, I was never surprised.

So I made it a point to order only things I had never ordered before and guess what? The new tastes combined with not knowing what to expect made this dining experience that much more special.

Bicycle in Tokyo
Bicycle in Tokyo

Go on a Date with your Camera

Yep, that's right! Go on a date with your camera. Just you and your camera ( or if you're like me, your iphone ). It's amazing how much more you notice when you're walking around with the purpose of looking for something that captures your attention. It forces you to look at things more closely and when you do, you'll find hidden beauty in unexpected places.

Nowadays I never leave home without my iphone. These days I seem to be attracted to flowers and plants but I've also been strangely fascinated by things such as walls and windows. Sometimes I'll make a special trip out of the city to take pictures but I find so much beauty near my very own home. It just makes you realize that you don't have to go far to find beauty in life.

A beautiful bouquet of autumn flowers
A beautiful bouquet of autumn flowers

Buy Yourself Some Flowers

A long time ago I went through a really bad break up and I didn't handle it very well. Nothing seemed to matter and my friends worried that they would find me dead in my apartment one day. Lucky for me I have friends that tend to lean towards a lot of drama so they sometimes worry more than necessary.

Of course like all bad breakups, I had to go through the stages of recovery-denial, hatred and finally forgiveness-well that's how I understand it anyway. Once I finally got a grip of myself and came to the realization that life must go on, I walked down to the corner flower shop and bought myself a bouquet of flowers. It's really amazing how doing something special like this for yourself can make all the difference.

Now I buy flowers for myself all the time!

Thymes Poured Candle FRASIER FIR GREEN GLASS, 6.5 oz Jar
Thymes Poured Candle FRASIER FIR GREEN GLASS, 6.5 oz Jar

If you can't get out, you can always light this candle and imagine you're hiking through a fragrant forest. I love how natural this one smells and the scent is long-lasting, letting it last for the entire season.

I like using these at the end of a day to relax and clear my mind before bedtime.

 

Which Appeals To You?

Which activity sounds most appealing to you?

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What are some things you do to make your life happier? How do you add that extra spice to your daily routine? Please feel free to share some of your ideas or co

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    • CherylsArt profile image

      Cheryl Paton 2 years ago from West Virginia

      I like what you said about treating each day as being important.

    • AcornOakForest profile image

      Monica Lobenstein 2 years ago from Western Wisconsin

      Shinichi, this is wonderful, and in agree with many of your suggestions. My favorite is to use my camera to capture beauty around me. It has completely changed my perspective as I look around myself in the outdoors especially. I am glad you are happier and think yki have found some excellent ways to make that happen for yourself!

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 2 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      It was good to read this again here, Smine27. It's one of those articles that blesses you more each time you read it. Getting outside to enjoy the lovely fresh air always lifts my spirits. Of course baking does too. I admire that you keep trying a recipe til you master it too! Your green tea cupcakes are delicious proof of that!

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 2 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I think a couple of your points struck me. We need to challenge our minds constantly in order to feel true happiness. We also need to feel creative, maybe leaving a legacy? You then illustrated some simple ways we can do this in everyday life. A well thought out and beautifully constructed Hub.

      Voted up as beautiful and interesting.

    • profile image

      TanoCalvenoa 3 years ago

      This is a great lens. So very uplifting. I have a variety of things I do that I love. Besides spending time with my family, I love to play guitar, draw, juggle, and write. Being creative really helps me to feel happier - and can really help on days where things aren't going well.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @RHKnight: Thank you so much and for reading my lens.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @chrisilouwho: Thank you!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @changrcoacher: Thanks so much. Everything that we think, say and do affects everything around us including our happiness.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Kim Milai: Thanks so much kimmilai.

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 3 years ago from France

      @smine27: You're welcome! I mean every word. So glad to have lightened your day a little... :0)

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @ecogranny: Aww thanks so much Grace!

    • RHKnight profile image

      RHKnight 3 years ago

      Wonderful lens, we could all benefit by stopping to smell the roses, we just need advice sometimes on how to do so.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @anonymous: It's not corny at all. In fact gratitude is part of my daily life. And thank you so much for the kind comment. I truly appreciate it.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Aladdins Cave: I love drives in the countryside and walks in nature. Cheers back my friend.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @GrammieOlivia: haha grammieo. I really should have put that option on there.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @JennAshton: Thanks so much

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @SteveKaye: Kindness works in my book. Thanks so much for visiting.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @corinnephillips1: That sounds nice corinnephillips. I always enjoy my time in a cozy cafe.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @WriterJanis2: Thanks WriterJanis. These days, squidoo challenges me to come up with new food and it's always satisfying when the dish come our right.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @RinchenChodron: I've always believe that gratitude is one of the most powerful ways to be happy.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @cpa13: It's so true that the simplest things can sometimes bring the most happiness to one's life. Thanks for sharing.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Joebeducci: Staying positive is definitely up there in terms of importance. Thanks for sharing.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @DawnRae64: I sometimes encounter something not so easy to do, but I'm usually able to laugh at myself. The other day, I designed my very own mug and it turned out looking like something a 9 year old would make! I still have a blast!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @DawnRae64: Oh yes, that actually makes me happy too!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @aleereviews: Thank you so much for reading!

    • ACDuncan profile image

      ACDuncan 3 years ago

      Great lens, everyone needs some happiness in their lives.....:)

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @ACDuncan: Definitely! Thanks for visiting.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @DreyaB: Aww DreyaB thank you! Your comment just brightened up my day.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @ecogranny: Grace you are so sweet and kind and I always appreciate your comments. Thanks so much for being you!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @PriyabrataSingh: That is such a beautiful way at looking at life. I applaud you.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @anonymous: simple but oh so true words.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @VinnWong: Oh, I love riding my bike too. It's so relaxing for me.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @girlfriendfactory: I especially like your last comment, "learn something from anyone and any situation". I try to remember that because it's so true.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Virginia Allain: Thanks so much for reading and commenting. I truly appreciate it.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Merrci: Thanks so much Merrci. I appreciate your kind words.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @lesliesinclair: Glad to have made you smile Papier. Always appreciate your visits.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Lorelei Cohen: Thanks so much Lorelei. I also love just watching people like you especially in parks. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      Stopped back by to congratulate you on your nod from HQ in their "7 Can't Miss Lists" blog post.

    • chrisilouwho profile image

      chrisilouwho 3 years ago

      wonderful, love the camera date idea!

    • profile image

      changrcoacher 3 years ago

      Wise and inspiring...thank you! I practice what I preach. Every day I change how I think, eat and move...practicing gratitude, forgiveness, connecting with nature and giving. Thanks for this lens!

    • Kim Milai profile image

      Kim Milai 3 years ago

      Congratulations on your great lens spotlight, well deserved!

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      It will sound corny, but I make myself happy by being very thankful for each and every day.

      I love reading your lenses, you are a very positive, cheerful and inspirational young man.

    • Aladdins Cave profile image

      Aladdins Cave 3 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      Doing things on the spur of the moment. Going on a drive in the country side. Or a walk in the forest and looking at nature. Thank you for your idea's. Cheers from DOWNUNDER

    • profile image

      GrammieOlivia 3 years ago

      I wanted to say all of the above on your poll, but that wasn't an option! ;(

    • JennAshton profile image

      Jenn Ashton 3 years ago from Canada

      Great post;-)

    • profile image

      SteveKaye 3 years ago

      I practice kindness, which leaves me feeling good about myself.

    • corinnephillips1 profile image

      corinnephillips1 3 years ago

      I usually drink freshly squeezed juice with plenty of chlorophyll or go to a cafe and have a cup of tea or coffee

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 3 years ago

      I like how your ideas are on the creative side. It can also give you such a feeling of accomplishment when done.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 3 years ago

      I center myself through meditation. I try to be grateful for what I already have.

    • cpa13 profile image

      cpa13 3 years ago

      Making a date with myself for some quiet time makes me happy. My life is so busy. Sometimes it's the simplest things that bring you the most happiness.

    • Joebeducci profile image

      Joebeducci 3 years ago

      I think the most important thing is being positive. If you are positive, hapiness will come :) Greets, Joebeducci

    • DawnRae64 profile image

      Dawn 3 years ago from Maryland, USA

      PS. squidooing and hanging out with all of the wonderful folks at squidoo makes me happy. :)

    • DawnRae64 profile image

      Dawn 3 years ago from Maryland, USA

      Buying or picking myself some flowers helps give me a lift. Trying new things often ends up in me choosing something that is too difficult, or I'm not patient enough. Then i get discouraged and blue. Dating my camera helps too. :)

    • aleereviews profile image

      aleereviews 3 years ago

      Great, inspiring lens :)

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 3 years ago from France

      Can I vote for all of them please?! Every time I read one of your lenses you remind me how I should take more time to do the things I love and to find new things to try. We all get stuck in daily routines, even me now, and we should invest in ourselves more. Thank you once again for the timely reminder. You bring me such light... :)

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      There was a time, years and years ago, that I bought myself a bouquet of flowers every Friday night on the way home from work. Weekends were the only time I was home for more than sleep time, and those flowers cheered me wonderfully.

      I am always struck, when I read your pages, by your upbeat, positive attitude, though it is clear you've had some tough times. It is a pleasure getting to know you a bit through your writing.

    • profile image

      PriyabrataSingh 3 years ago

      I always try to help others either human or animals. Even if I do face a lot of problems in it but bring happiness in the face of other makes me feel happy. I am addicted to it. I don't let even a small insect to die under my feet. This is my way of sharing, feeling and giving happiness to other.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Do everything sincerely. Always positive thinking

    • VinnWong profile image

      VinnWong 3 years ago

      I love to go on walks and going to new places. Sometimes going by bicycle helps to do longer distances for more scenic variation!

    • girlfriendfactory profile image

      girlfriendfactory 3 years ago

      All of these things keep you young at heart, too! What do I do? Always enjoy each day as it comes, look on the bright side of things, never look back and remember I can learn something from anyone and any situation!

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 3 years ago from Central Florida

      I agree about taking a photo walk. It does get me to focus more closely on my surroundings.

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      I love your idea of learning something new. Instead of being put off at how much there is to learn, embrace it until you master it! Great lens.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 3 years ago

      You're sure on a wonderful happiness roll. It makes me smile and I'm sure that's part of the point. Thanks.

    • Lorelei Cohen profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 3 years ago from Canada

      Wonderful lifestyle choices to make your world a brighter place. I'll take all of the above. I also like to see happy people - it makes me happy. Children laughing, seniors walking hand in hand, and all that other kind of wonderful stuff.

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @socialcx1: My thoughts exactly. Thanks for commenting!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @sousababy: That's a good reminder for me. I sometimes keep myself indoors writing lenses or working all day and before I know it, the sun goes down. Will take a walk with my dog after this. Thanks!

    • smine27 profile image
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      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @valmillsy: Yeah that sense of accomplishment feeling sure does boost my happiness.

    • socialcx1 profile image

      socialcx1 3 years ago

      Try to enjoy everything that is new even if at first it makes you a little uncomfortable.

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 3 years ago

      I do my best to connect to nature everyday - even in some small way.

    • valmillsy profile image

      valmillsy 3 years ago

      Taking time out for my dogs. They give me a great deal of comfort.

      Surveying a project I recently completed (like a new garden or a picture that looks perfect in its new setting). You get that "sense of accomplishment" feeling.