3 ways to happiness

3 ways to happiness

Posted by Joy McCarthy on May 21, 2012 | Wellness And Balance

Year after year the self-help section continues to grow in bookstores across North America. Is this a sign that we are paying more attention to the level of satisfaction and happiness in our lives by seeking out solutions in the written form? Likely so.

We all want to be happy. We all deserve to be happy, but in this quest for happiness, are we forgetting how simple it is to inject doses of joy into every day? Perhaps when we stop chasing down happiness and simply allow “happy” to come into our lives by doing the simplest of things, we will experience fulfillment that we never imagined possible.

Here are my top 3 ways to increase your happiness.

1. Get outside and immerse yourself in nature for at least 20 minutes every single day.

This is one of the simplest mood boosting activities you could possibly do – it’s good for your body and good for your soul.

Most people spend the majority of their day indoors with fluorescent lighting, staring at a computer screen and communicating via email with little to no fresh air or exercise. Toss in some stress and a diet full of processed foods and you have a recipe for unhappiness.

Many studies have shown that just a short brisk walk outside has incredible mood boosting ability. And don’t let weather be an excuse! If it’s raining, grab your umbrella and your sassy rain boots and get yourself outside for some fresh air. Even better, if you can surround yourself in nature by taking a walk in a forest or along a beach.

2. Do a mindful body scan once per week.

Before or after you shower, drop your towel and take a 2-5 minute gander at your beautiful body. Take time to look at yourself from your toes to nose and with every body part you review, think to yourself, how lovely and beautiful you are.

This might be intimidating at first, but you need to love the skin you are in to be truly happy. Self-acceptance is absolutely key in your overall happiness. If you don’t accept your very own body, how can you accept anything in your life? Try this for one week and evaluate how good you feel after just a few days.

3. Lastly, give good quality hugs to your loved ones, every day.

No one likes a wussy hug. As I write this, I think of the hugs that my big brother gives me. No matter how crazy busy and stressed his life might be (note: he has four kids) he ALWAYS has time for a high quality hug when I see him. His hugs infuse me with a megawatt dose of the happy nutrient.

And this act of giving someone else a good quality hug isn’t completely self-less. You will notice that you feel just as good when you share your love with others by giving the warmest, fuzziest, heartfelt hug possible.

While spending another $25 dollars on a self-help book isn’t such a bad idea, you can see there are many simple ways to inject happiness into your day and they don’t cost a penny.