20 Tips for Happiness

Dr. Purushothaman
October 4, 2013

Tip 1 Have a positive attitude. One of the most significant, contributing factors to happiness is optimistic thinking. Although you won't always have a choice in determining what goes on around you, you will always have a choice in determining how react to what goes on around you. This will largely determine the extent to which you are, or aren't happy.

Tip 2 Make happiness a priority. If happiness is not at the top of your list then other things will take your focus. We become what we think about all day, so think, positive happy thoughts. It's a choice, moment by moment.

Tip 3 Live your values. Be true to yourself. By living your life according to your values, you will develop an attitude of true acceptance of yourself. You will realize that you are fine the way you are. You may choose to make some changes in your life simply because you realize that you have greater potential than you have utilized so far.

Tip 4 Love Yourself. High self-esteem is crucial for a happy life. Healthy self-esteem means relying on what's on the inside, rather than what's happening in the outside world to make you happy. Self-esteem is the core of your power and all else stems from this.

Tip 5 Set goals for success. Give your mind a positive goal to focus on. Just like in any other life area, the successful pursuit of happiness requires planning. Planning requires effective goal setting. And don't forget to make sure your goals are SMART (specific,measurable, achievable, relevant and timed).

Tip 6 Do things that make you happy. Although this sounds obvious, many people simply forget to do things from which they gain pleasure. And do them as often as possible.

Tip 7 Live in the present moment. Remember that life is finite. The author, Henry Miller once said "Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such. "The only moment in which we can truly be happy is the present moment. The only moment over which we have control is the present moment. So be happy now! Because if not now, then when?

Tip 8 Have a laugh Laughing is one of the quickest ways to send our happiness levels soaring. A Stanford University study showed that one minute of laughter equaled 10 minutes on a rowing machine in terms of warding off stress.

Tip 9 Engage in random acts of kindness. Did you know that by simply being kind to another person or witnessing a kind act boosts your serotonin levels in you and the other person? It also increases the levels in another person witnessing the act. Happy people are more generous and altruistic.

Tip 10 Eat your way to happiness. Fuel up on fish: Fish are high in omega-3s which boost your happiness. Eat complex carbohydrates - this means wholegrain bread, starchy vegetables, beans and pulses, and wholegrain cereals. MIT scientists say these boost the brain's levels of serotonin, which plays a big role in how happy we feel. Take Tryptophan. Found in turkey, avocados and bananas, tryptophan promotes the production of serotonin. A study published in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity found a lack of tryptophan can lower your mood levels. Don't forget to take a good amino acid supplement- more and more information is coming out that we need to be supplementing our diets with the building blocks of protein- amino-acids.

Tip 11 Go, go and keep going all the way. We all face obstacles and problems at times. Happy people expect this and adapt to them. All of the components outlined above are skills that can be learned. Just like any other skills, you'll get better at utilizing these strategies with practice and perseverance. Stick at it and happiness will be yours.

Tip 12 Focus on your strengths, not weaknesses. Work out what you're good at and find ways to do it as much as possible. Happiness is not as much about fixing your faults and overcoming your weaknesses as it is about finding ways to focus your life on and around your talents and qualities.

Tip 13 Have fun and enjoy humor Take delight in life and create fun experiencesfor yourself. Don't make life be too heavy!

Tip 14 Control what you can control. Cultivate the feeling that you are in control of your own destiny. Happiness can be enhanced by maximizing the control you have over your life. So learn and practice skills such as problem solving, time management and meditation and communication. At the same time, however, no one has complete control and so it is also important to be realistic and to accept that over which you have no control. Accept what youcan't control. And learn to change problems into opportunities for growth and development.

Tip 15 Invest time and energy in to your key relationships. Happy people spend more time working on, and in, their relationships. Happy people tend to be more supportive of other people in their life.

Tip 16 When a problems arises see what you can learn from itEverything you do and every person you meet, in every situation, presents an opportunity to learn, change and grow. Every situation you find yourself in can be a great opportunity to expand yourself. There is always something to learn from a problem. This is the same for problems in a relationship. Look at problems as challenges to learn and grow from both for yourselves and your relationship.

Tip 17 Replace negative self talk with positive self talkThe Dalai Lama has been quoted saying that "The central method for achieving a happier life is to train your mind in a daily practice that weakens negative attitudes and strengthens positive ones." Learn first to identify your negative thoughts and then begin to challenge those that are negative and unhelpful.

Tip 18 Ensure you get adequate sleep, rest, exercise and waterListen to your body and what it is telling you. You need to take care of yourself and this also involves getting plenty of rest, drinking at least 8 glasses of water each day and relaxation and/or meditation strategies. Exercise regularly. Exercising produces endorphins or "happy" hormones.

Tip 19 Develop a sense of life purpose. Developing a sense of life purpose will also markedly increase your chances of experiencing true happiness. As well as working out where you want to get to, make sure you have a good reason for why you're trying to go there.

Tip 20 Be grateful and appreciate what you have. We all have many choices in life, one of which is whether to focus on all the things we don't have (of which there might be many), or to focus on all the things we do have. There's no doubt, that gratitude and appreciation will significantly increase your chances of experiencing happiness


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