Maybe this year’s resolution should be to choose happiness! I started to read the book “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin and she spent a year focusing on happiness. Here are some interesting things to consider:
- GET MORE SLEEP: lack of sleep is one of the factors that can upset your mood. Rubin quoted one study that concluded one extra hour of sleep a night would do more for a person’s happiness than getting a $60,000 raise!
- GET OFF THE COUCH: people who exercise are healthier, think clearer, and have a boost in energy! In psychology, it is known that one of the best defences of depression is exercise.
- FAKE IT TIL YOU FEEL IT: It is counterintuitive, but we often feel because of the way we act, not just the other way around. Studies show that even an artificially induced smile brings about happier emotions. Rubin found that advice from every quarter showed that if we want to change our feelings we should change our actions…. so act happy!
- HELP SOMEONE OUT: Don’t underestimate the happiness it can bring you to help someone else. Bake someone cookies, pay a compliment; preform a random act of kindness!
- TAKE TIME TO COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS: Often there are MANY things in our lives that bring us happiness, but we fail to take the time to be grateful for them, or even to really think about them!
There are many factors about our life that we cannot change. But happiness is less about what happens to you and more about your attitude. There is a quote I love. "Doing what you like is freedom. Liking what you do is happiness."
Rubin ends her book, “The year is over, and I really am happier. After all my research, I found out what I knew all along: I could change my life without changing my life. When I made the effort to reach out for them, I found that the ruby slippers had been on my feet all along”.