08 Sep Three Things You Can Do Today To Increase Your Happiness
by Andrew Rosenthal from www.happier.com
Friday, I shared Five Surprising Facts About Happiness. Well, most people tell us all this is great, but who has the time to work on being happier? These days we can barely make it to the gym, let alone add on a set of _ã–happiness exercises._ã But there are easy, quick things we can do each day to become happier that take maybe five minutes, even less.
_ã¢ Do at least one thing per day completely. By that, I mean, experience it fully, without going off into your head and thinking about what you need to do later, what you_ã_re worried might happen, or whether whatever you are doing is a good use of your time. Just do it, and savor it. It can be anything _ã_ a meal, your shower, even a conversation _ã_ and you don_ã_t have to plan it in advance. What_ã_s more important is that you pick something you usually rush through or do distractedly and instead be completely present while you are doing it.
_ã¢ Every night, reflect on the things that went well that day. We have all sorts of cognitive biases that make it easy to forget good things, or let bad things overshadow them. We have to work hard to keep them from disappearing from our memory altogether, and one of the quickest, easiest ways to do that is to set a specific time to remember (and maybe even record) them. Happier.com has created an iPhone application called the _ã–gratitude journal_ã that records your bright spots during the day and tracks your happiness _ã–quotient_ã. You can do it in just a few minutes a day.
_ã¢ Experiment with your daily routine. Develop some ideas about what makes you happy and what makes you unhappy and see if you_ã_re right. Keep a log of what you do each day and what your mood is throughout the day, and see what factors make a difference. You_ã_d be surprised how often the things we do because we think they are helping us actually make things worse, and how often things we think are unimportant have a huge impact.