Interventions that Increase Happiness

Just about everybody would like to be at least a little happier. When someone I'm talking with finds out what I do the first question is always: "What is one thing I can do to increase my happiness?". So I decided I would give everyone here my top 3 list of activities that have been shown to increase happiness. Try one, try them all. When you find one that works for you, stick with it.

Interventions that work:

1. Gratitude Journal - Spending time every day keeping a journal of all that you are grateful for is a great way to increase happiness. It is the first activity I share with my clients and anyone who askes. (Here is my gratitude journal)

2. Creating Flow - Flow, or as athletes call it, "being in the zone", is the psychological state that accompanies highly engaging activities. It is most likely to occur when there is an optimal balance between skill and challenge. It can happen with just about any activity: playing music, writing, reading, teaching, coaching, cooking, sports, etc. One you should be aware of is that you can't force flow to happen. You can participate in activities where you experienced flow before which might lead to flow again, but it just has to happen.

3. Giving Service to Others - Volunteer your time! Not only will it make a difference in the lives of the people you are helping, but the act of helping others has been shown to increase our own happiness too.

There you go. I would love to hear from you after you try these. Let me know how they work.


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