happiness

Ever wondered what is the Secret of Happiness?

Ever wondered what is the secret of happiness Vidya Sury

Who doesn’t want to be happy? In our quest for happiness, we are ready to do just about anything because, the high that comes with being happy is something nobody can resist. Not me, anyway. I mean, why would someone choose to be miserable?

Each one of us has her own ideas of happiness. While some of us successfully manage to go through life balancing our ups and downs and automatically answer “Fine” when someone asks “How are you?”, there are others who feel the need to chase happiness. Some find it in inspiring quotes, some find it in other places and people. My son, for instance, thinks it is a homemade pizza!

I have to admit that reading is one of the things that makes me happy and so it was when I did my regular round of Tom Casano’s website and found this smashing guide titled “The Science behind Happiness”. It was one of those “I-wish-I’d-written-this” kind of guides and the accompanying infographic, eye-catching. I joked to Tom about bumming the guide off his site and he, as usual graciously offered to write one for me – thank you, Tom.

Enjoy!

Science Unlocks the Secret of Happiness

by Tom Casano

There’s a good chance that you’ve reached a point in your life where you know that happiness isn’t two kinds of ice cream. Nor is it—sorry, Charlie Brown—a warm puppy.

You’ve tried to find happiness in binge-watching Game of Thrones, you’ve searched for happiness in the shopping mall and in your refrigerator, you’ve gone on a quest to find happiness with your Facebook friends, and all you have to show for it are a cable bill, a pile of receipts, calorie overload, and a lot of likes that don’t mean anything.

Don’t worry; you’re not alone.

While 51% of Americans do describe themselves as very happy, 48% say they’re not very happy. How do you move into that 51% of the happy sector?

As you can see in the infographic, How to Be Happy in Life: 10 Science-Backed Ways to Be Happy, the research that’s being done on happiness has increased enormously in the past 50 years.

In 2008, super pollster Gallup even entered the happiness measuring field with the beginning of its Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

Happiness is more than just an abstract feeling; it’s now an emotion that science has begun to study. And here’s the good news: science has devised a list that you can follow if you’re seeking happiness (and who isn’t?).

Here are the Top Ten Science-Based Ways to Be Happier

1. Laugh

Laughing multitasks! It increases your happiness levels and reduces your stress. What makes you laugh? Kitten videos, stand-up routines on Comedy Central, your year-old nephew trying to figure out this walking thing? Laugh often, laugh long, and laugh whenever you get the chance. Happiness is waiting on the other end.

2. Thank you!

Notice that Starbucks barista who’s making your Iced Coconut Milk Mocha Macchiato? Your drink might be the seventeenth one she’s made since she started her shift. Why not thank her for her work, and mean it? You thank her, she feels appreciated, and you’ve gotten the good mood momentum going.

3. Love

Love, and its kissing cousins compassion, empathy, and kindness are all pieces of the happiness jigsaw puzzle. Sure, it’s great to be in love, and that can make you feel happier, but don’t rush to join an online dating service in the hopes that you’ll instantly find happiness. Love has many manifestations and learning to recognize them, even if Cupid isn’t shooting arrows your way, is one way to discover that happiness isn’t out of reach.

4. Smile

Ever feel like you’d like to put one over on your own brain? Just smile. Your brain interprets the physical act of smiling as evidence that you’re happy. You’ve probably heard that people engaged in a telephone conversation can tell whether or not the person on the other end is smiling, even if there’s no way to see the person. That’s because your tone of voice reveals whether or not you’re smiling. If you’re smiling, you’re feeling happy. Just ask your brain!

5. Meditate

By training your mind through meditation and mindfulness, you can build a happiness factory in your own being. The Dalai Lama has said that “The real understanding of the true nature of the mind can only be gained through meditation.” Take it from the Dalai Lama: happiness is as close as your own mind.

6. Take it easy

This one makes sense, right? Remember the Eagles lyric: Take it easy, take it easy; don’t let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy. When you’re relaxed, you’re not a victim of the things in life that make you stressed. Knowing what relaxes you can help you build up a happiness routine that will teach your stress triggers to leave you alone.

7. Give of yourself

You’ve heard that it’s better to give than to receive. Turns out that it’s true. But giving doesn’t have to come with a price tag. You can give a gift if you want to, but don’t forget that you, yourself, can be the gift. Volunteers achieve a tremendous sense of worth by donating their time to a cause that matters to them. Just opening the door for someone can make you feel as if you’ve given generously of the spirit. There are millions of ways to give to others; just find the one that works for you.

8. Spend Time with Others

Friends and family are all ways to spend time with another living human being whose presence makes you feel better. Maybe Greta Garbo wanted to be alone, but as for the rest of us, we often find that being with others makes us feel happier about ourselves.

9. Do what you love

What do you love to do? Then do it! Whether it’s hiking in the mountains, gardening, taking a walk, or watching a sunset, the things that you enjoy doing are part of the happiness cookbook. You just need to remember the recipes for life activities that feed your happiness appetite.

10. Exercise equals endorphins

Don’t keep those endorphins trapped inside your mind-cloud! Walk, run, swim, do yoga, to get your body moving so that the endorphins, which are the “feel-good” mechanism in your brain, have a chance to cut loose and strut their stuff. Happiness is just an endorphin away!

Science has figured out the key to happiness. Now that you’ve done the research, it’s time to continue the experiment. Remember, your life is your own laboratory, so give the science of happiness a try!

Ever wondered what is the Secret of Happiness? Vidya Sury

About Tom

Tom Casano is the founder of Life Coach Spotter where you can change your life and find yourself when you’re feeling lost. Learn more about how to find your life purpose.

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What, according to you, is happiness?

 

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8 Comments

  • Reply
    Darla M Sands
    July 21, 2016 at 12:38 am

    Great post! I’m bad about not socializing. Tried to get together with local writers on a regular basis but couldn’t maintain the will. ~sigh~ I do feel pretty darn happy, though!

    Best wishes!
    Darla M Sands recently posted…The Amazing Story Generator – A Prompt FicletMy Profile

  • Reply
    Evelyn Lim
    July 21, 2016 at 7:32 am

    I like that there is science behind being happy. Indeed, our life is our own laboratory! There is no matter way to test 🙂
    Evelyn Lim recently posted…21 Life Mantras That Will Change Your VibrationsMy Profile

  • Reply
    Obsessivemom
    July 21, 2016 at 10:14 pm

    Great post. Made me evaluate myself. I really need to work on nos 5 and 6.
    Obsessivemom recently posted…Have you played Uno cards?My Profile

  • Reply
    Laura J. Tong
    July 22, 2016 at 9:47 pm

    Tom, I love your look at happiness and your diagnosis of all that doesn’t work at all! I tried all that I was shown would make me happy for years: career, houses, long list of friends, and yep, these are great but they aren’t quite the ingredients my happiness cake needs. Now I just stir in love, a few friends who make my heart sing, green spaces and wildlife and helping out where I can – ‘ping’ that was the sound of my happiness cake baked to perfection.

    And Evelyn, such a great observation that ‘life is our laboratory’ – thank you for making me think 🙂

  • Reply
    Birgit
    July 25, 2016 at 5:08 pm

    Great post and so true! I am happy to say I have done most of these( except the exercise part…oopsy) and love to play with our cat who is quite full of beans as my friend has said. I have a friend whom I think loves to wallow in bad things. She does have health issues..migraines etc… And some of her family members are going through major issues but she has a truly good life. No money worries, travel several times per year. Loves her doggie and her husband but she does decide to enjoy her unhappiness which is sad.
    Birgit recently posted…Thursday Movie Picks….Summer CampMy Profile

  • Reply
    Sid
    July 25, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    Fabulous post, Vidya. It just goes to show that we all have it in us to be happy; just need to dig deep and find what works for us. Love that infographic.

    PS: Happiness is being with family 🙂
    Sid recently posted…Would you like to know me better?My Profile

  • Reply
    Joseph
    August 24, 2016 at 4:59 pm

    The brain’s design is such that it pushes you towards happiness if you give it a chance. The chemical factory of the brain encourages you to be happy by rewarding you. A healthy brain means that nerve connections and therefore the ability of the brain to do its job including promoting happiness is much better. In short, a healthy mind means your creativity, analytical skills, as well as observation, are at the optimum level.

  • Reply
    Kyle L
    October 12, 2016 at 8:42 pm

    Wow, really good article! I really like the info graphics in this one. Personally, meditation helps me become happy because it helps me get life into perspective, and I just feel at peace afterwards. Really glad to see that on your list. One thing I didn’t see on your list though was progress. When we don’t grow as a person, we ultimately become unhappy – at least that’s how I feel and many of my friends feel. What helps me feel like I’m making progress is watching one motivational video a day. My favorite are Jaret Grossman’s videos on his blog since there’s a video for every day of the year. Great article! Glad I found it. Keep up the good work!

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