We're all in search of happiness and nothing makes this more certain than a search of recent research in the field of psychology. Lots of studies looking for ways to increase our feelings of happy.
A Washington Post journalist spoke to Shawn Achor, a Harvard trained expert on positive psychology. Achor recommends several exercises to increase feelings of wellbeing, including.
(1) Gratitude. Spend two minutes every day thinking of three new things you appreciate, enjoy, or are thankful for.
(2) Positivity. Spend two minutes every day recalling a positive experience from your day. Recollect every detail you can think of and let yourself feel the pleasant feelings associated with each detail. This can be as simple as observing a beautiful flower or seeing a dog chase a frisbee.
(3) Exercise. Fifteen minutes a day of high energy physical movement. Get your heart rate up AND your feelings of happiness.
(4) Breathe. Here's the magic time again, two minutes. Push away from your keyboard, silence your phone, turn off the tv, sit under a tree, lay beneath a ceiling fan. For two minutes, just listen to your breathing. That's it. Just listen and stay focused on the sound of the air moving in and our.
(5) Kindness. Each day send an email or text someone a message telling them how much you appreciate something about them or something they have done. According to Achor, this is one of the most powerful happy-getters.
You can read the Washington Post article and interview in full, here.
--Sandy Andrews, PhD