Surprising Ways to Boost Happiness
Pretty much everyone wants to be happy, and many of us think we know what will make us happy. Things like good health, lots of good friends and family, a meaningful job, and of course they are a big part of what makes us happy, but there are some rather more surprising ways you can boost your happiness too…
Having lower standards
It might sound odd, but having lower standards for yourself and others can actually make you happier. You see, when we expect too much from life, we often end up being disappointed and that can make us sad. Whereas, if our expectations are more realistic, we will often be pleasantly surprised by the way things turn out. This can lead to greater well-being, improved self-esteem, and yes, more happiness.
Doing puzzles has so many benefits. They’re great for good brain health and can help us to stay sharp for longer. Some studies have shown that they can also help to lower levels of stress and anxiety, even if they do fox us and we have to cheat a little by using the daily jumble to work out that crossword clue from time to time!
Less stress and anxiety and better brain health obviously lead to more happiness over time, so what are you waiting for – start solving that crossword or working on that jigsaw puzzle right now!
We tend to think of ending relationships as something sad and it can be when those relationships are happy and fulfilling, but when those relationships are pointless, toxic, draining or unsupportive, well it’s a different story.
That’s why we should all take the time to evaluate our relationships with others and what they bring to our lives with a view to ending them as amicably as possible. If there’s someone who makes you unhappy who you can’t cut contact with, spending a bit less time with them will help. It’s nice to be nice, but you need to think of your own wellbeing as well as the wellbeing of others.
Owning a pet
Okay, so this might not be that surprising to pet owners, but for those of you who don’t have animals in your life, you might be interested to know that close contact with cats, dogs, and other pets can reduce levels of stress, anxiety, and depression, as well as lowering blood pressure and a whole host of other physical issues. “Should I get a dog?” you might ask, borrow one and see how great it is.
Appreciating what you have
Appreciating what you have, even when you don’t think you have very much at all is an excellent way of retraining your brain to look for the positives in life. If you spend a little time each day writing a list of things you are grateful for, even if that’s just having a roof over your head or enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning, you’ll be surprised by how good you start to feel.