As we get ready for the full swing of the holiday season, what is the full meaning to being joyful and happy? Are you only full of joy and happiness during Christmas, or are you happy throughout the year each and every day?
For me, I see the dawn of a new day upon rising in the morning as I take my dogs for their daily walk in Central Park; it brings me joy and happiness. It’s a feeling you have to work continuously at because it’s an inside job. Having a bigger bank account and perhaps a bigger house, new relationship, none of those things will bring you sustaining happiness according to research done on happiness. After having the new house or car, in the beginning, it feels great at first, but you get used to it and in the long run, you return to the same feelings you had prior to these possessions.
Psychologists believe you can reprogram your happiness set point, just the same way you can improve your health through diet and exercise. You can increase your happiness by changing your thoughts, behaviors, actions, and habits.
Here are some tips to bring joy and happiness in your daily life throughout the year:
Choose strategies or activities that are beneficial to you and build the activities that suit you best. Bring these activities into your daily life and seek out additional resources if you need it to ensure long-term success. Expand your knowledge, skills and success in areas you choose that are beneficial to your well-being.
Strive for something that is personally significant, for example changing careers, learning a new skill. Researchers have found, people are happier than those who don’t have strong dreams or aspirations. Decide on significant goal or goals and devote your time and efforts to pursuing them. Working towards your goal is important to your well-being.
Be optimistic. Others have said things happen for the best, I don’t agree. You are able to make the best of things that happen and that’s the key to happiness. In order to achieve this one has to change their mindset. If things are going wrong and you see it as permanent and personal, blaming yourself and feeling sad, you have to change your thoughts. Instead, try to view the problems as temporary and look on the bright side.
Create relationships with positive people. The happiest people surround themselves with family and friends that have a positive mind and nurture their relationship together. Also, engage yourself in an activity like running, singing, walking the dog, reading or cooking. These activities promote a contented state of being. During a state of flow, you get so involved in the activity or task that nothing else seems to matter and you lose track of time and the thing that’s bringing you down.
Another act is counting your blessings and recognizing good things when they happen in your life. Expressing gratitude and appreciating all the good in your life will bring joy and happiness to you. Keep a gratitude journal and write things down daily or once a week that you are grateful for. Studies have shown the experience can bring happiness and less anxiety.
Be kind. When you do good things for others, being compassionate you bring about a life that is full of purpose and therefore brings joy into your life.
Also, learn to forgive. Holding on to grudges, pain, bitterness, and hatred, your life can suffer. You pay the price because the individual you cannot forgive or feel bitter towards has moved on with their own life. When you forgive, you are less stressed, angry, more optimistic and therefore happier.
Practice spirituality. Research studies have shown. people that have an internal sense of the spiritual dimension in their life are happier than those who don’t. This does not mean you have to be affiliated with an organized religion. It doesn’t matter if you call it God, Spirit, or Higher Power. Connecting to your spirituality is the experience of feeling connected to a force bigger than yourself. The more deeply you experience this connection, the more content and happy your life will feel. To nurture your spirituality learn meditation, pray, read spiritual books that are uplifting to your soul. My experience with Unity of New York, my spiritual home led me to a life that is fulfilled with joy, happiness, and gratitude.
Make exercise part of your daily routine. Having a brisk walk in the park daily, running, swimming or yoga as a regular habit will make you happier. When you exercise, your body produces brain chemicals and hormones like endorphins, serotonin, dopamine, and adrenaline that impacts your energy, mood, and health. Working out regularly will help you feel more in control of your body and health and thereby increase your confidence and self-image.
Eating a plant-based diet and getting a good night sleep, are also important in bringing joy and happiness in your life.
Therefore, when you practice self-care it will bring more joy and happiness and enrich your life. During this holiday season, make it joy-filled and happy every day of the year. Change your mindset and make it happen.