Want to be a happier person? More satisfied with your life? Able to focus on and enjoy the simpler pleasures?
You can teach yourself how to have a happy state of mind. Here are 9 habits to develop that can lead to a happier way of thinking.
1. Practice random acts of kindness. Doing something for another person can change your thinking from a focus on your own problems to making a difference in someone else’s life. It can also help put your life in a larger perspective as you recognize another‘s struggle.
2. Begin a gratitude journal. Begin a gratitude journal at the end of each day. As you think back over the day, focusing on the things that you are most grateful for in your life can change patterns of thinking from negative to positive.
3. Express gratitude. Talk out loud to others about your gratitude. Notice the results.
4. Nurture friendships and social connections. We “get by with a little help from our friends”. A great deal of research has shown the connection between connecting with others and lifting depression as well as overall good health. Find ways to be connected to others.
5. Identify negative thought patterns and change them as soon as you notice that they are there. Don’t let negative patterns of thinking take root and grow weeds. Stop them as soon as you notice that they are present. Find a replacement thought and then get busy and do something differently.
6. Learn to live in the present. You cannot change yesterday. You cannot truly predict tomorrow. Don’t lose the joys of today. Most problems have a way of working themselves out one way or another.
7. Treat yourself to simple pleasures. You deserve it. Pick some flowers and put them in a vase. Take a nap. Read a “fluff” book.
8. Take care of your physical health. Eat well, get enough sleep, exercise, pay attention to alcohol, caffeine and sugar consumption.