The definition of a habit is a routine or behaviour that is repeated often, and becomes an automatic response in a certain situation. Have you ever wondered how you could use habits to your benefit, to create a happier and more fulfilled life?
In this article we explore seven key daily habits that can drastically help increase your happiness, and improve how you respond to daily tasks and goals.
The Seven Daily Happiness Habits
The seven habits for daily happiness are:
1. Exercise for happiness
One essential way to start the day off on the right foot is physical exercise. No doubt you can think back to a time where you exercised and felt both physically and mentally uplifted. This positive effect of exercise is due to the release of endorphins, which are known to be natural antidepressants. Daily exercise is an essential habit to form. Doing so will make it much easier as time goes on to partake in daily exercise and feel the benefits. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a 10 mile run or 60 minute gym session, it could simply be a 10 minute walk before your work day begins. We can all find 10 minutes in the day to perform exercise, even if it means watching less television in the evening! Remember, any form of daily movement is better than none.
2. Mental stimulation for happiness
Daily habit number 2 for happiness is mental stimulation. In habit number 1 we exercised our body, but it is equally important to exercise the mind. You might obtain enough mental stimulation during your work day, but if not, it is important to find a way to do this each day. There are a number of ways in which we can stimulate our mind, such as:
- Reading a newspaper
- Completing a crossword puzzle
- Discussing a topic of interest with a friend or colleague
- Study a new topic
- Take part in an online course
- Try solving math problems
- Complete Sudoku puzzles
- Paint or draw
- Practice writing an article
Mental stimulation has been found by scientists to stimulate new connections between nerve cells, and in some cases may even help to create new cells. This stimulation can help to develop neurological ‘plasticity’, and can aid in combating future cell loss in the brain.
3. Spiritual stimulation or meditation for happiness
Another of the recommended daily habits for happiness is to spend a part of the day focusing on your imagination, creativity, or spirit. This could be as simple as watching a film, visiting an art gallery, reading a poem, attending an event, spending time in nature, or meditating.
4. Helping others for happiness
Habit number 4 is to help others in some way. Now this does not have to be a major task, and could simply be a random act of kindness to another person. Examples of these acts of kindness could be:
- Holding a door open for another
- Offering to pay for someone's coffee
- Putting extra money in the parking meter for another person
- Making a meal for a friend
- Offering directions
5. Friendship for happiness
Habit number 5 is to spend time with a friend or companion. This could be a short break or a phone call if you can’t spend time together in person. Spend at least 20 minutes catching up with a friend - there needn’t be any particular structure to your time together. You could simply catch up on what has been happening in your own lives over a coffee or lunch.
6. Treating yourself for happiness
An enjoyable habit for anyone! Habit number 6 for happiness is to give yourself a treat.
7. Congratulate yourself for happiness
The final daily habit we recommend for happiness is to congratulate yourself at the end of each day. Think about anything you have accomplished, and celebrate all of your wins. You could even rate your day from 1 to 5. Using a daily planner or journal is a great day to write down and reflect on your day. Using a daily planner allows you to reflect on each day at the end of the week, as we often forget all of the smaller accomplishments.
Although we have given you a list of seven daily habits to help increase happiness, we don’t expect you to use each one every day. If you are able to take a couple of these habits and perform them daily, you will see the beneficial impact this has on your happiness.