5 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Happiness
“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions” Dalai Lama
Happiness is a choice. And one you are free to make every day of your life. It may not be easy. Life is terrible sometimes. It can be awful, traumatic and rough. However, it can also be full of immense joy and satisfaction. And it’s not as difficult (or expensive) as you might think.
To be happy you must work for it. Do not expect self-love or true happiness to reign down upon you from other people. It will not be handed to you on a golden platter. The pursuit of happiness is a human right, but it is not inherent by nature. It takes fostering and attention to yourself and your surroundings to truly live a happy life.
So what can you do to improve your own happiness? There’s an endless amount of activities and exercises that are helpful. And everyone is different. Something might work for an individual, but that doesn’t make it a cure all for everyone.
Review the following 5 tips for enhancing your daily happiness. They each have proven affects on the human brain and body that can ultimately lead to a more cheery disposition.
1. Cook & Bake
Cooking and baking also stimulate senses of touch, smell and even sound (think of a blender running or eggs being whisked). Each of theses senses triggers endorphins in your brain leading to a more happy state of being. And studies show that people are significantly happier and less stressed after eating at home.
Going back to the basics in life is sometimes the best way to start. Cooking itself can be a stress reliever and can ease depression and anxiety. The process of cooking or baking can be extremely meditative and calming. The tasks involved create space in your mind that helps to ease negative thoughts.
Grow.bar is a wonderful way to begin both gardening and cooking. You can watch as your microgreens grow. And you will be inspired to find new ways to use them in the kitchen. There is a self-satisfaction and self-reliance built from both of these activities. When you pay attention to what your body and mind need, you will begin to see the happy results.
2. Grow & Garden
The presence of plants is not a new notion in health care. Live plants in hospital rooms have proven to help patients heal faster. Their spirits are soothed by the life surrounding them and the air is cleaner. Plants release chemicals that basically humidify and help to remove pollution from the air around them. This can reduce headaches, lower blood pressure and promote overall better respiratory health. And healthiness breeds happiness.
However, improving your health is not all that plants can do. Studies show that when you harvest plants from a garden dopamine is released. This chemical in your brain can be triggered by sight, smell and touch. It’s a “happy” chemical that sends messages of euphoria to your brain.
And with products like grow.bar, it’s easier than ever before to reap the benefits of gardening (even without a green thumb or large outdoor spaces). The systems are built for minimal maintenance and the plant life growing in your own home will truly enhance the atmosphere and mood.
3. Paint & Create
Fine art in any form can be a wonderful stress reliever. Even if you are not “into” the arts, painting is a great activity to go to if you are feeling down. The act of painting is an exercise for your brain. Just like our bodies need regular activity to maintain physical health, so does your brain.
Painting and creating art fosters critical thinking, creative growth and boosts memory recollection. It will sharpen these skills for anyone, regardless of their talents. To actually present on the canvas what you picture in your mind uses not only left side brain functions, but also motor skill functions and coordination.
The brush strokes can be meditative and bring you a peace of mind with whatever is going on in your life. Even if your canvas looks like 3 big color blobs, it may be worth giving it a try. Don’t paint to be praised, create to heal your own soul. You may not be promoting your physical health, but your emotional intelligence will increase.
4. Read & Write
This is another thing you can do that (regardless of talent) will increase your overall happiness. Reading is a great escape for the world’s problems. And sometimes, what you read may even relate to your own issues and help you cope. However, putting pen to paper (or fingers to keys) is a more interactive way to increase your well-being.
Expressive writing is a new term for an old method. This simply means a writer does not worry about their spelling, grammar or proper structure. You should write what you feel and think for 20 minutes per day. There are no other rules. Choose to write about something personal, something tough to talk about or traumatic. For some people this is easier than verbalizing their emotions.
It’s even had proven physical benefits as well. According to Baikie & Wilhelm (2005) “Those who take part in expressive writing report significant benefits in both objectively assessed and self-reported physical health four months later, with less frequent visits to the health center. Additionally, expressive writing results in significant improvements in longer-term physical health outcomes, such as illness-related visits to the doctor, blood pressure, lung function and liver function” (st.marys.org).
5. Learn & Live
With any of the previously listed activities you will find a source of happiness. And you may even be learning something new. Grow.bar is a great way for gardening novices to take a stab at bringing plant life into their home. And it may even lead to self-education. You will want to learn more about cooking and how to create healthy (and delicious) meals.
But there are other subjects to consider. Maybe you have always wanted to learn a new language. Researchers show that education is the foundation of psychological health. Learning will build confidence and can even lead to higher-paying jobs. Motivating yourself to start that French or Spanish class could change your life. And in ways you may not realize.
To live you must learn and to learn you must live. These two go hand in hand. And you will promote your own happiness by always keeping this in mind. Try something new, learn for yourself and become a happier and well-rounded individual.
For more happiness in your life, try some of these suggestions. Have fun and be yourself. Why not? Everyone could use few more smiles throughout the day. The best place to start looking is within you.