- Mental Health»
Shortcut to happiness: 7 Easy Ways to Be Happier
Are you happy or sad?
Happiness is a timeless and universal human quest. Everybody loves to attain the highest possible level of satisfaction with his / her various facets of life.
A happy person is one who finds not only satisfaction with his / her life and self but also attain active pleasures and accomplishments. Count and note down your blessings regularly, you will find enough reason to be happy.
Happiness is subjective but contagious.
Most people in general would probably report that they are relatively happy and satisfied with their lives. According to World Values Survey (2005), the percentage of people who are happy worldwide is 53.9%. Global Poll conducted by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG) and its global network of WIN International pollster partners in 58 countries, shows 53% of the World is "Happy". Overall, this poll finds:
•53 percent of the world says they feel "happy"
•31 percent of the world says they are "neither happy nor unhappy"
•13 percent of the world says they are "unhappy"
•3 percent did not respond
Happiness can be sustained and increased. There are 7 easy things you can do to be happier; these are the short-cut to happiness.
1. For a Happier Day, Smile or Laugh
Laugh your way to happiness. Laughing is one of the simplest, easiest and cheapest means of stress reduction.
Go in front of a big mirror every morning after you get up and smile at yourself. Then try to have a good laugh at yourself. Research shows that even an artificially induced smile boosts your mood.
Laughter is the best medicine. Learn to laugh for the sake of happiness and good health.
Make a habit to smile. Be pleasant and give smile to all. If you're smiling, other people will perceive you as being friendlier and more approachable.
Cultivate a sense of humour. Be able to laugh at yourself and absurdities of life. It gives incomparable relaxation.
People who smile as a result of cultivating positive thoughts can significantly and immediately improve their mood. One easy way to improve one’s mood right now is to recall pleasant memories—and smile because of it.
2. Get in Touch with your Spiritual side to be Happier
Spirituality is universal but it specific contents vary across cultures. Spiritual people are found to be characterised by graciousness, optimistic mind set, compassion and self-actualization.
Be spiritual. Having a spiritual dimension to our lives can make us happier. It means finding a sense of inner peace (peace of mind and peace in the heart), that guide us how we interact with the external world.
Research suggests that people with a sense of spirituality are likely to experience greater happiness and well-being.
Religion or spirituality is a source of comfort in times of trouble; it provides sense of identity and social support or a sense of connectedness to others. It also gives meaning and purpose to life. It also connects us to something bigger which is beyond our daily lives.
People who feel their life has meaning or purpose are happier and healthier too.
3. Listen more to be Happy
Listen more as you are blessed with two ears. Being listened to is the psychological equivalent of air says Stephen Covey. It is one of the deepest hungers of the human heart.
Being attentive or good listener stimulates affection and solidifies bonds. It undoubtedly adds to human happiness.
Be an emphatic listener to be happy. It not only helps others but also you can learn a lot from others by listening more.
Being happy is partly dependent on being happy with others. One effective way to maximise happiness in your interpersonal life is listening.
Play or listen to music. Music can reduce stress and increase happiness. It can alter your mood. Live music could trigger happiness as it provides a way to forge social bonds.
The greatest gift you can give yourself and others is your undivided attention. Anyone who is willing to commit time and energy can learn listening.
Start listening to yourself. Most of us tend to look outside for answer instead of looking within. Happiness starts from within.
Don’t forget to listen to others. It may be your colleague, kid, spouse or stranger, whoever they may be, listen with compassion and empathy. You will be surprised to find the deep of connection you make with them.
How happy or unhappy you are?
4. 4. We are happier when we are helping others
Doing good is an essential ingredient to being happy. Happiness helps spur kindness and generosity. Happiness increases the chance that we’ll be altruistic in the future, creating a positive feedback loop of generosity and happiness.
How we spend our time and resources is as important, if not more important, as the amount of money we make. Giving to others releases endorphins, activating the parts of our brains that are associated with trust, pleasure, and social connection.
Being altruistic and spending money on others leads to higher levels of happiness than spending it on oneself.
Altruism has the potential to reward the giver as much or even more than the receiver as long as it is not obligatory or overwhelming.
Help someone. Volunteer your time and energy for charity.
Altruistic habit make people happier because it helps in perceiving others more compassionately, promotes a sense of connection and helps in realising the need to appreciate for one’s good fortune.
Altruism in all forms- kindness, generosity, compassion, volunteering or donating money – can start a chain reaction of happiness.
Perform acts of altruism or kindness—visiting a nursing home, helping a friend's child with homework, or writing a letter to a grandparent.
5. Spending Time Wisely can Increase Happiness
Time is a precious resource which is equally given to all of us. No one can spend more than 24 hours in a day. You have a free choice to spend your time the way you like.
Spend your time wisely. When we spend time doing things, we develop meaning and create a lot of happy memories.
Happiness is strongly related with personal meaning and social connectedness, which time can provide. Researchers found that the way we spend our time is directly proportional to our level of happiness.
You may spend your time doing things that are important and interesting to you. But be moderate in the things you do. Engage in socially connective activities.
Spend time with people you like. Hang out with your close friends and family. Social support protects against stress.
Expand your time. Think about the present moment; focus on the here and now.
If you want to be happy, use your time to cultivate meaning and connectedness.
Happiness is partly volitional
About 54% of the world is happy
20th March is International Day of Happiness
6.People who Exercise are Happier
People’s moods significantly improve after exercising. Exercise can increase one’s sense of happiness.
Exercise act as stress-buffer. It provides active outlet for ‘what is bottled up’. It will also tone your body leading to improve self-esteem and self-confidence.
Exercise isn’t just good for our bodies; it’s good for our minds. Studies show that regular physical activity increases happiness and self-esteem, reduce anxiety and stress, and can even lift symptoms of depression. “Exercise may very well be the most effective instant happiness booster of all activities,” writes Lyubomirsky in The How of Happiness.
Exercise regularly as it will improve your mental well-being and lower incidence of depression.
7. Buying Experiences, not Possessions, Leads to Greater Happiness
Research shows that spending money on experiences and activities rather than on material purchases makes us happier in the moment and over time.
Study has demonstrates that experiential purchases, such as a meal out or theatre tickets, result in increased greater well-being than material possessions. These experiences tend to satisfy higher order needs, specifically the need for social connectedness and vitality—a feeling of being alive.