You don’t have to quit your job and live on a beach to become a happier person. There are a number of small, everyday things that you can do to increase your feelings of joy and serenity, and many of them won’t cost a dime. If you’re interested in all-natural mood boosters, here are just eight ways to be happier and healthier.
It sounds simple. It isba simple. But there are still people who are resistant to the idea of filling their lives with laughter. Studies have shown that there are actual, physical benefits to having a giggle fit; it has to do with the release of feel-good chemicals in the brain. So, instead of insisting that you’re too busy or too stressed to watch a silly YouTube video, consider it part of your new wellness plan. Those sneezing pandas are actually good for you.
2. Find a New Hobby
Hobbies keep life interesting. They get you out of the house, help you make friends and inspire you to learn new things. The trick is figuring out how to find new hobbies in the first place. Does your local community college offer summer classes for non-students? Does an activity center have adult game nights or sports teams? Is there a hobby that you’ve always wanted to explore before real life got in the way?
3. Drink More Water
It’s actually a myth that you need eight glasses per day, but you should still be drinking more water than you do. It only takes a low level of dehydration to start messing with your mood, attention span and cognitive function, and what’s more, you might not even realize why you’re feeling so crabby until you finally grab a bottle. Try to keep yourself hydrated to feel fresher and more focused throughout the day.
4. Establish a Nightly Routine
Sleep deprivation is no one’s friend, but “get more sleep” is such a vague piece of advice that it’s practically meaningless. Instead, try to form nightly bedtime habits that might help you ease into dreamland. For example, you can always drink a cup of tea before getting into bed, and that might trick your brain into associating the taste of oolong with powering down for the night. At any rate, it’s worth a shot!
5. Do Something Charitable
Doing good makes you feel good. In fact, if you have problems with self-worth and self-confidence, being charitable can help you come out of your shell in a really meaningful way. It’ll make you feel like you’re having a tangible impact on the world, especially if you do something where you can see the results of your hard work after you’re done. Think about building houses, collecting cans, cleaning up garbage or volunteering in a soup kitchen.
6. Beat Your Bad Habits
This is especially important if your bad habits include drinking or using drugs. Addiction is an insidious thing, and it’s common for people to fall so far down the rabbit hole that they can’t climb out without help. The good news is that there are places you can go for a Baton Rouge detox. If you need proof that you aren’t alone in struggling with your demons, check out some Louisiana treatment admissions data.
7. Develop a Gratitude Habit
Being thankful for your blessings in life is a great way to remain positive and focused on the future. Instead of kicking yourself because you lost your job, you can celebrate the fact that you have more time to spend with your kids. Instead of dwelling on what you don’t have or how your life has gone wrong, your thoughts can be focused in a better and more helpful direction. Try it out! You might be surprised at the impact that gratitude has on your overall mood.
8. Reach Out
Never underestimate the power of a hug. Humans are physical creatures, so much so that the brain actually lights up in response to touch. Studies have shown that friendly contact can also lower your blood pressure, improve your circulation and boost your immune system. If you’ve been feeling down, ask a friend, spouse, child or pet for a good old-fashioned snuggle.
These are just a few ways to live a happier life. There are many more, but these should be enough to motivate you towards a brighter future. Half of the battle is attitude, and once you’ve got it, you’re already on the right track!