11 Tips for Giving Life a Little More Joy
In the nonstop, success-driven mentality of today’s world, many people spend a majority of their time with their heads down and their brains busy. Even when not hunched over a project at work or painstakingly ticking off the boxes on to-do lists, our brains are constantly absorbing non-stop information from our computer and phone screens. This doesn’t leave much time for stopping to smell the roses. It’s no wonder that more and more people are beginning to feel unsatisfied and overwhelmed. Luckily, it doesn’t take much time to elevate your level of happiness—there are many small ways to create some joy in your life. Here are 11 things you can do to increase your overall happiness.
1. Go on a Nature Walk
With so many people living in the concrete jungle, it’s easy to get caught up in the hectic routine of everyday life and forget our roots. However, nature has been proven to be extremely beneficial for health, so taking a trip to the local park or beach is a great way to take a breather in the fresh air and get some sunshine.
2. Devote a Few Minutes to Laughing
According to Mental Health America, laughing decreases pain and can improve organ function as well as decrease stress and anxiety. Devoting even a few minutes to laughing can improve your productivity for the rest of the day, so watch a funny video, listen to a comedian or chat with that friend who always tells the best jokes.
3. Buy a Houseplant
Owning a houseplant has many positive effects, including the increased oxygen output and the joy that comes from caring for another living thing. Plants give people the same benefits as nature walks with the added bonus of being exposed to it whenever you’re in the room.
4. Create Something New
Get your creative juices flowing and make something by hand — being creative is shown to increase your overall happiness level, and everything is more special when you’ve taken the time to make it yourself. Try your hand at that DIY project you’ve been thinking about, paint a picture, make a pair of earrings, or write a song.
5. Spend Time With an Animal
Spending time with a furry friend boosts joy and has been shown to improve mental health and lessen loneliness. It also doesn’t hurt that their adorable antics may make you laugh in the process!
Meditation has been shown to alleviate stress, increase focus, and reprogram the central nervous system. Taking a few minutes each day to practice meditation ensures that you get a break from your daily chaos while resetting your brain back to its factory settings.
7. Clean Out a Cluttered Space
Our consumer-oriented world can leave people feeling the need to hold onto clutter, and it can build up until it begins to overwhelm the senses and create a sense of chaos. Pick a space in your home and de-clutter it; sell or give away items, and throw out what you don’t want. Having a clean and organized space will make you feel more put-together and will refresh yourself.
8. Do Something Nice for Someone Else
Being selfless can increase your own happiness as well as the happiness of the person you helped. Commit a random act of kindness or pay it forward, and you will reap the rewards of your good deeds in happiness and increased life satisfaction.
9. Turn Off Your Electronics
Turn off your phone, log off of Facebook, and sign out from the technological world for an hour or so. Since the modern world is so constantly connected, people spend more time focused on what other people have and less time concerned with their own happiness.
10. Take a Nap
Napping for at least 30 minutes might be just what you need to feel happier for the rest of the day. Taking a daily nap has been linked to increased clarity, memory, mood, and performance.
11. Make a List of Three Things You Are Grateful For
At the end of each day, or when you wake up in the morning, list three things that you are grateful for in your life. What did you do today that made you feel good? Reflect about what is going well in your life, and recreate those scenarios in the future.