I think it’s safe to say that we all could use a little more happiness in our lives. We spend so much time searching for this seemingly elusive feeling, but usually come up empty-handed. So, how can we fix this tiresome pattern of searching but never finding? How can we truly break the cycle of unhappiness and frustration, and move into a place of bliss and freedom?
Well, we don’t claim to have all the answers here, but making a few simple lifestyle changes can make a world of difference. We have so much power in our minds to actually create happiness, so we want to help you realize this gift and utilize it to your full potential.
In this article, we’ll discuss a few helpful ways to create more happiness in your life, starting today.
10 TIPS FOR CREATING MORE HAPPINESS IN YOUR LIFE
1. STOP WORRYING ABOUT THINGS YOU CANNOT CHANGE.
“If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it’s not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.” – Dalai Lama
Simply put, worrying does nothing except add more stress to your life. If you can fix something, then do not worry about it, but come up with solutions instead. If you cannot fix it, then don’t worry about it. Easier said than done, we know, but writing down the worries on your mind can help to alleviate them.
Make a list each day of the things that worry you, and then decide how many of those you can actually do something about. If you cannot feasibly change something, then cross it off your list. Take the problems left on your list, and come up with actionable steps you can take to greatly reduce those stressors. Once you can see all of this on paper, you can begin to sort out all the thoughts in your mind and compartmentalize them so they don’t seem so overwhelming.
2. MOVE YOUR BODY.
It’s been said over and over again by countless scientists and researchers that we MUST exercise in order to remain healthy. There’s no way around this, unfortunately, but the key is to find some sort of exercise that you actually enjoy doing. Something that doesn’t feel like drudgery, in other words. Maybe you don’t know what you even like to do in terms of exercise, but the fun is in the process of figuring this out! Stay away from things you already know you won’t be able to stick to, and focus on trying new forms of exercise that you can at least tolerate.
Many people enjoy taking Zumba classes, for instance, because they still burn a ton of calories, yet you can have fun doing it in a group setting. Or, if you need to let out some aggression while getting a workout, try out kickboxing classes. If you enjoy the outdoors and being on the water, try kayaking. We have endless choices for exercise, but it’s up to you to decide what type of movement and activity you can commit to on a regular basis.
3. MAKE BETTER DIETARY CHOICES.
As you probably already know, you can’t out-exercise a poor diet. As much of a perfect world as that would be, our bodies simply cannot process certain foods efficiently. We, too, are animals, and we require certain vitamins and minerals in order to function optimally. Highly processed, overly sugary or salty foods are hard for our bodies to break down, and in terms of nutrition, they tend to have very little. Stick to mostly whole foods, and limit consumption of red meats, sugary or salty foods, alcohol, and other substances that have little nutritional value.
Look to what grows naturally on this planet, and fuel your body with that. It might take discipline, but the health benefits you will notice are going to be worth it, one thousand times over.
4. PRACTICE MINDFULNESS.
In our crazy, fast-paced world, we can easily become imbalanced and out of touch with ourselves. No matter what you have going on in life, you must take time to simply breathe and focus on the present moment. Even if you don’t like meditation, you can practice mindfulness at any given moment of your day without having to sit cross-legged on the floor in a quiet room away from society. You can bring awareness to your mind and body at any point during your day; in a work meeting, in the car on the way home, at the grocery store, during your workout, etc. Mindfulness simply means becoming aware of your thoughts and centering yourself within the present moment.
Once you practice this more often, it will come more naturally to you, and you’ll feel much more relaxed and balanced as a result.
5. GET RID OF CLUTTER.
A cluttered outer world becomes a cluttered inner world, so try out minimalism in order to clear out unnecessary items and bring more space into your environment. Plus, you could sell some of the things you don’t want, which would put more money in your pocket, too. We all just want more space, both mentally and physically, so one of the easiest and most rewarding ways to achieve this goal is to get rid of material items.
Creating more space in your environment will allow you to have more space in your mind, as well. Plus, you won’t have the burden of having to maintain and pay for all of the items you used to own, which will eliminate a great deal of stress.
6. START APPRECIATING THE LITTLE THINGS IN LIFE.
One main reason many people cannot create happiness is that they focus so much on what they don’t have, that they lose sight of what is already in their possession. Even if you own nothing, you can appreciate the miracle of being alive. You can be thankful for being above ground and having air to breathe, water to drink, and food to eat.
At the end of our lives, we won’t remember all of the cool gadgets we bought or the fancy houses we owned. We will remember our relationships with others, and the quality of life we lived. So, instead of always wanting more, learn to be happy with less. Be IN this world, but not OF it. It still holds true that the best things in life are free, so don’t let society tempt you with the illusions of happiness they want to sell to you.
7. VOLUNTEER YOUR TIME HELPING OTHERS.
We create much of our own unhappiness by dwelling on ourselves and our own problems. One easy fix for this is to give back to our world so that we can become a little less burdened by ourselves, and help others along the way. We’re all just walking each other home, so don’t get so caught up in your own world that you forget about the world outside yourself that desperately needs help, too.
8. TRY NEW THINGS.
Much unhappiness breeds from boredom and complacency, so to combat this, start changing things up a little. If you’ve always wanted to learn martial arts, look for a class in your area and try it out. We are our greatest obstacle, so stop letting your mind tell you what you can and cannot do. You are your own limit, and the only way to move past it is to challenge it, and go after what you want even if you have insecurities or doubts about what you can accomplish. Once life starts to feel dull and mundane, it’s time to start doing things that you enjoy again. Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone, because once you do, you’ll start developing a whole new sense of self-confidence and break the cycle of unhappiness as well.
9. DISCONNECT TO RECONNECT.
As you have probably already noticed, we’ve become a very disconnected society. Sure, we’re more connected to each other in the virtual world, but we’re growing apart faster than ever in the real world. We spend most of our days engrossed in various screens, from our TVs to our phones to our laptops. When did we let it get to this? Our greatest asset in life is not our online image or status, but our real-life friends, family, and lovers. We must rely on other people in order to survive, so creating distance from them by way of social media and other online distractions only separates us further from what we need to truly be happy.
Learn to put down the technology and talk to the people around you. We are social animals, and this hasn’t changed since the birth of early humans. We need each other, so don’t let the trends of today take away from the connections you share with others.
10. GET LOST SO YOU CAN FIND YOURSELF.
Remember when you were a little kid running through fields of sunflowers, splashing in puddles after a rainstorm, and exploring the woods behind your house for hours on end? You didn’t have to be somewhere at a certain time, except at the dinner table in time for supper. You could get lost in nature and explore to your heart’s content, and you loved every minute of it. So, why can’t you do that now? On a day when you have time, drive to a nature spot you’ve always wanted to explore, and lose yourself once again. Run through the forest, jump in the river, lay in the sunshine among a bed of soft grass, let the wind whip through your hair, and enjoy the natural world like you used to, before you forgot about the importance of playtime.