Enhance your social connections. Social connection is the biggest factor affecting happiness, multiple studies have found. One of the most convincing is the Harvard Study of Adult Development which, for more than 80 years has followed the lives of hundreds of participants and, now, their children.
Engage in random acts of kindness. Random acts of kindness can make you feel happier and less depressed and anxious, according to a series of studies from Sonja Lyubormirsky at UC Riverside.
Express gratitude. Writing down three things you’re grateful for at the end of each day, and why they happened, leads to long-term increases in happiness and decreases in depressive symptoms, according to a 2005 study from Martin Seligman, director of the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania.
Practice mindfulness. Exercises like meditation that teach your brain to focus on the present instead of the past or future can increase feelings of self-acceptance, according to a 2011 study from the International Journal of Wellbeing.
Practice self-compassion. Be present in the moment rather than dwelling on the past or looking anxiously to the future. Understand that setbacks are part of being human. Cultivate a warm, supportive inner voice.”
Excerpted from “How to Be Happy, According to Science” by Alison D. Rayome, CNET.com, 10/26/20.