We can be happy everyday, simply by choosing to behave in ways that can bring us happiness—by engaging in activities that psychologists have found to make us happy, daily.
Happiness is that positive, good-feeling emotion we know and wish to experience always. Psychologists define it as a mental state that includes three components: feeling positive emotions, feeling satisfied with one’s life and not experiencing negative emotions.
Being happy is not a fixed state, but a continuous process of making an effort to enjoy daily pleasurable events, situations, people and objects. Here are some behaviours and activities we can perform, to be happy:
Think Happy: We feel what we think. Studies done have shown that our ways of thinking can result in the way we feel. It’s called cognitive appraisal theory. Our interpretations, thoughts or emotions of situations events or objects can make us experience emotions that are consistent with what we think. So think positive and happy to feel positive and happy.
Smile & Laugh: A smile and laughter also can make us happy. According to the facial feedback theory, the brain interprets sensations from the movement from our facial muscles as emotions. Isn’t that a great reason to smile, and laugh?
Activate the brain’s reward/pleasure centre: The brain has a neural circuit that produces pleasurable feelings. Researchers found that we activate that reward/pleasure centre when we engage in certain pleasurable behaviours. And there are so many things (behaviours) we can do everyday to tickle the brain’s pleasure centre:
- Enjoy delicious, healthy food
- Listen to great music
- Go on a date
- Have sex: The body releases hormones during sexual intercourse to produce feelings of excitement and satisfaction.
- Exercise: Moderate exercise strengthens the body, reduces stress and makes you feel good.
- Meditate: In meditation, you remove worrisome, stressful and all negative thoughts and replace them with peaceful, positive ones. It is a good method for relaxation and reducing stress.
- Fall in love: Intimate relationships are good. Support from a loved one can improve physical and mental well-being.
Besides, you can achieve long-term happiness by pursuing your own personal goals, developing a sense of meaningfulness, having intimate relationships and not judging yourself against what others do or think, but by your own yardstick.
Go on and be happy everyday!