25 simple habits that can make you a happier person, according to psychology

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Being happy and content is really important because it affects everything in our lives. It keeps us healthy, mentally and physically, helps us make friends, do well at work, and just enjoy life more.

If you’ve been feeling down lately, there are luckily many simple habits you can start today that will make you a happier person. 

So, let’s begin!

1) Plan adventures

Set aside time to plan exciting adventures. Go for a weekend camping trip, a road trip to a nearby town you’ve never visited, or try out a new adrenaline-pumping activity like skydiving or rock climbing.

It’s a relatively unknown fact that even if you merely start planning an enjoyable activity, the very anticipation boosts your mental health

And if you’ve ever planned an exciting trip, you know that that’s absolutely true. 

2) Cherish positive experiences

Slow down and fully immerse yourself in simple moments of joy, pleasure, and contentment. 

From enjoying a delicious meal and basking in a beautiful sunset to sharing laughter with loved ones, savoring these experiences will improve your happiness.

The goal is to stop rushing through life and chasing the money. Settle for less, and you’ll soon find out there are many other joys in life. 

3) Be an optimist 

Adopting a positive outlook on life can help you overcome challenges and setbacks more effectively. 

Focus on what’s going well in your life and preserve a hopeful attitude toward the future. 

Don’t get stuck in the past, or remind yourself constantly of what once was or of the things you might have done wrong in the past. 

4) Go on solo dates

Treat yourself to a solo date where you indulge in activities you love. I’m thinking of visiting a museum, trying out a new restaurant, or going for a solo hike or ride. 

Embrace the freedom of spending quality time with yourself, and you’ll soon realize that most other people simply drag you down with their constant demands. 

5) Start a gratitude jar

Instead of journaling, write down things you’re grateful for on small pieces of paper and collect them in a jar. 

At the end of the month or year, revisit the jar and reflect on all the moments of gratitude you’ve experienced.

And that’s also the time when you can take them all and put them in a frame or on a string and have a constant reminder of the good things in life. 

6) Do DIY home projects

Get creative and tackle DIY home projects that improve your living space and bring you joy. 

Channel your creativity into decorating your environment by painting a mural on your wall, upcycling furniture, or creating a mini indoor garden.

If you don’t know where to start, there are countless examples, inspirations, and how-tos online. You’re never more than a couple of taps or clicks away from another project!

7) Visit local festivals and activities

Immerse yourself in different cultures by exploring ethnic neighborhoods, going to cultural festivals, trying out international cuisine, and learning about traditions and customs from around the world. 

Expand your horizons and embrace diversity. You might be surprised by what you find out there. 

8) Start writing letters

Bring back the art of letter writing by sending handwritten notes and letters to friends and loved ones. 

Express your gratitude, share fond memories, or simply let them know you’re thinking of them. It’s a thoughtful and personal way to connect in our digital age.

9) Doodle

Dedicate a few minutes each day to doodling or sketching whatever comes to mind. It’s a creative and relaxing way to express yourself and tap into your imagination.

You don’t need to be an artist to doodle. Welcome imperfection and allow your creativity to flow freely. Create your doodles using simple shapes, lines, and patterns.

10) Have DIY spa days

You can create your own spa experience at home by indulging in DIY beauty treatments like homemade face masks, luxurious baths with essential oils and bath bombs, and self-massage techniques. 

Pamper yourself and prioritize self-care. You’ll see that you don’t have to spend a lot of money on this indulgence. 

11) Get enough sleep

Prioritize getting quality sleep each night, as it plays a key role in your overall mindset and well-being. 

To do that, create a relaxing bedtime routine by making sure your sleeping surroundings are comfy and helping you rest properly.

12) Connect with other people 

We’re all social beings, and maintaining meaningful connections with friends, family, and community is key to happiness. 

Make an effort to nurture these relationships through regular communication and spending quality time together.

13) Help others

 

Helping other people benefits not only the recipients but also boosts your own happiness. 

Look for opportunities to lend a helping hand, whether it’s volunteering, offering support to a friend in need, or simply being kind to strangers.

Research suggests that helping others activates brain regions associated with reward and pleasure, which results in a “helper’s high” and lasting feelings of well-being.

14) Laugh often

To be and feel truly happy, you should definitely laugh more often. The famous Mayo Clinic says that “laughter can help lessen your stress, depression, and anxiety and may make you feel happier.”

Laughter is often dubbed “the best medicine” for its powerful effects on mental and physical health. 

Research shows that laughter triggers the release of endorphins and strengthens social bonds, leading you to have increased happiness and overall well-being.

So, seek out sources of laughter and humor in your daily life. Watch funny movies, share jokes with friends, and go see a comedy show.

15) Spend time outdoors

Nature has a calming effect on the mind and body. Like laughing, exposure to nature has also been linked to countless psychological benefits, including reduced stress, improved mood, enhanced cognitive function, and increased feelings of vitality and happiness. 

Spending time in nature, therefore, promotes relaxation, rejuvenation, and a sense of connection to the world around us.

What else can I say but, make regular time to spend outdoors! Go for a hike, have a picnic in the park, or simply take a walk around your neighborhood.

17) Go on photography expeditions

And while you’re out there, explore your surroundings with a camera in hand and capture the beauty of the world around you. 

You can photograph landscapes, street scenes, or portraits. Photography can help you see the world with fresh eyes and appreciate the beauty in everyday moments.

Once I put on my “photographer’s hat,” I always see new details. Even things I’ve seen hundreds of times shine in a new light. 

18) Have a “no complaint” day

Challenge yourself to go an entire day without complaining or criticizing. Instead, focus on finding solutions to challenges and voicing your appreciation for the positive parts of your life.

If you’re a complainer like me, you should strive for even more of these “no complaints” days. That way, you’ll give your family a well-deserved break, lol. 

19) Embrace silence

In a world filled with constant noise and distractions, carve out moments of silence to quiet the mind and reconnect with yourself. 

Try meditation, taking a silent nature walk, or simply enjoying a quiet cup of tea. Turn off the phone, TV, or anything else that might make unnecessary sounds at that moment. 

20) Limit screen time

While technology has its benefits, excessive screen time can negatively impact your happiness and mental health. 

Set boundaries around your screen use and prioritize activities that promote real-life connections and experiences.

21) Practice forgiveness

Holding onto grudges and resentments can weigh you down emotionally. Be forgiving, both towards others and yourself, to release negative energy and develop inner peace.

Trust me, you’ll be a different person. 

22) Set meaningful goals

Having clear goals that match your values and aspirations can give you an immense sense of purpose and direction. 

But big goals can feel overwhelming. Break them down into easier steps and celebrate your advancement along the way.

23) Absorb yourself in hobbies

Hobbies are an excellent outlet for creativity, self-expression, and peace. From gardening, painting, and cooking to playing drums, do things that bring you joy and fulfillment.

If you’re a social person, find the ones that put you beside other people. And if you’re more of an introvert, get a hobby that will include only yourself. 

24) Practice self-compassion

You know, I always try to treat myself with the same kindness and understanding that I’d extend to a friend. 

Be gentle with yourself during difficult times, and start being fair to yourself to nourish your body, mind, and soul.

25) Learn something new

And lastly, lifelong learning keeps the mind sharp and engaged. This year, I’ve started learning Portuguese, long-distance swimming, decided to read at least a book a week, etc.

I like to keep my mind occupied and always have a feeling I’m moving the goalposts further. 

Adrian Volenik

Adrian has years of experience in the field of personal development and building wealth. Both physical and spiritual. He has a deep understanding of the human mind and a passion for helping people enhance their lives. Adrian loves to share practical tips and insights that can help readers achieve their personal and professional goals. He has lived in several European countries and has now settled in Portugal with his family. When he’s not writing, he enjoys going to the beach, hiking, drinking sangria, and spending time with his wife and son.

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