11 Things You Can Do Every Day To Be Happier

Do you find yourself on auto-pilot, stuck in the same unsatisfying loop from day to day? Or maybe you are in a stressful season of life, whether it's starting a new job, having a baby, moving, or balancing school and work and a social life. No matter where you're at – be it waiting for the next big adventure in life, or riding out the wave – one thing is certain: we could all use a little more happiness throughout our day. Here are a few simple ways to squeeze the most happiness out of every moment!

11. Wake Up With Intentional Gratitude

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Mornings are hard, believe me, I know. So before your feet even touch the floor, before reality kicks in and the stress of the day starts chipping away at you, take a few minutes to be thankful. A recent study by the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology suggests that those who consciously focus on blessings receive multiple emotional and interpersonal benefits. But don't let science dictate your decision – try it out for yourself! Start small, with three simple things you are grateful for. Maybe all you can muster when the alarm goes off is, “coffee, mug, creamer,” but I bet that will be the best cup of coffee you've ever had!

10. Pick Out Your Best Quality – And Flaunt It!

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Now that you have a brand new attitude of gratitude about the world around you, it's time to take a good long look at yourself. No seriously, go look at yourself in a mirror. What do you see? Vibrant eyes, a stunning smile, toned arms, legs for days? Maybe you have the kind of hair that is just beautiful no matter what you do with it. Are your eyelashes long and beautiful even without mascara? If so, I'm jealous. Everyone has at least one thing about themselves they know is pretty awesome. So, flaunt it! (with reasonable modesty, of course.) When you feel confident about yourself, the day seems much less intimidating. Still don't know what your best quality is? Ask a friend!

9. Dream Big; Start Small

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Everyone knows that the journey of a thousand miles begins with just one step, (thanks to Lau-Tzu), but… what does that look like for you and me? This is a two parter, so bare with me. First of all, we need to have goals. Big goals. Big, scary, “feel like it's never gonna happen” kind of goals. That's your thousand mile journey. But don't stop there! It's not enough just to know what you want. Don't let your dreams collect dust and turn into what could have been. Plan out what you can be doing right now to achieve those goals. Is it skipping the morning latte and putting that money in a savings account for a plane ticket to Italy? Maybe you need to do some research on trails and hiking gear for that mountain you've always wanted to climb, or develop a character for the novel you've always meant to finish. Whatever it is, you can make it happen, one day, one dollar, one draft at a time.

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