16 things that will make you happy and enjoy life more 

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I’m going to let you in on a little secret…happiness doesn’t just fall into our lives by chance, we have to cultivate it! 

The way in which we live our lives, treat our bodies and minds, and the things we do for others can majorly impact how happy we feel, and how much we get out of life. 

So, if you’re looking to make some positive changes, this is the article for you. 

Here are 16 things that will make you happy and enjoy life more: 

1) Looking after your body

If you want to be happy and make the most out of your life, the very best thing you can do is look after your body!

After all, if you’re feeling run down and tired all the time, how can you live life to the full?

So, make sure you’re:

  • Sleeping properly – get a good 7-9 hours a night depending on how much you need, switch off your phone an hour before bedtime, and keep it consistent! 
  • Eating and drinking enough water – overprocessed food can leave you feeling sluggish, and dehydration will affect your concentration and focus.
  • Caring for your mental health – recognize the signs of stress, anxiety, and burnout before they get too late. Never be afraid to seek help or speak to a friend.

But that’s not all…to be truly happy, you need to factor in the next point:

2) Exercising regularly 

You knew it was coming – exercise is one of the easiest ways to boost feel good hormones, which will naturally allow you to enjoy life more! 

Especially when you’re stressed or feeling down – there’s no better time to go for a run and burn off all the pent up energy. 

In fact, the Mental Health Organization advises that with just 30 minutes of low-level intensity aerobics, 3-5 times a week, you’ll find yourself feeling much more positive and uplifted! 

And if the gym isn’t your thing?

Dance in the kitchen while you cook. Find a sport you enjoy and join a team. Take classes in the evening after work. Exercise is more than just running a treadmill at the gym!

3) Spending time with good friends 

The company we keep can have a profound influence on us – good company uplifts us, and bad company brings us down. 

So, spend time with friends if you want to feel happy and enjoy life more, but make sure they’re good, genuine friends who have your best interests at heart! 

Anyone who leaves you feeling drained and stressed out isn’t a friend worth keeping around, and the truth is, they could be causing you more unhappiness than you realize. 

4) Setting achievable goals

Next up on things that will make you happy and enjoy life more is setting achievable goals.

Let me give you an example:

An unachievable goal would look like this:

“I want to learn French fluently within two months.”

An achievable goal would be:

“I want to complete a beginner’s course in French within two months.”

You see, with the first example, it’s almost impossible to do and you’ll very quickly feel frustrated and give up. With the second example, you actually stand a chance of achieving your goal.

And the more you achieve your goals, the happier you’ll be

5) Helping others 

Have you ever volunteered or helped out someone vulnerable and in need?

If not, now’s a good time to start, especially if you want to enjoy life more and feel happier

Why?

As Action for Happiness explains, when we do things for others, it triggers a part of the brain associated with pleasure. This releases endorphins which make us feel good! 

So, even if it’s just providing company for an elderly neighbor, or volunteering at the local shelter, get out and get going! 

6) Learning new things 

Ever heard the expression, “An idle mind is the devil’s playground?”…Well, not only could you end up getting into trouble, but an idle mind also leads to feeling down, bored, and frustrated. 

The truth is, when we learn new things, it opens up opportunities.

Learning how to code, or how to plant a garden, could be hobbies (in which case you’re doing something enjoyable) but they could equally turn into income avenues. 

So the bottom line is, the more you learn, the more you’ll enrich your life! 

7) Limiting screen time

It feels good, scrolling through social media, right?

WRONG. 

I hate to break it to you, but it’s sneakily deceptive.

 We do get an instant rush from seeing entertaining videos online and it does keep our FOMO under control to see what friends are up to. But in the long term, it can damage your happiness. 

There’s far too much fakeness and overhyped influencer lifestyles that can make you feel bad about your own life (for no reason).

So, use social media as you will, but keep it under check. There’s a whole life out there to experience for yourself, not through a screen! 

8) Spending time in nature

And once you’ve put the phone/tablet/laptop away, it’s time to get out into the wild.

Even if that is just your local park!

You see, spending time in nature will 100% make you happy and enjoy life more. 

Why?

Many studies have shown that the more time we’re surrounded by greenery, fresh air, and sunshine, the lower our stress levels are. In fact, being in nature can boost creativity, foster calmness, and even help with concentration!

9) Practicing gratitude 

One thing you could do whilst on the beach or relaxing in the park is to start a gratitude journal.

This is a wonderful way to be a happier person and to enjoy your life more – the more you recognize all the good things in your life, the less time you have to focus on the bad! 

Why not start by writing down 3 things you’re grateful for every day? They can be as simple as having a dog or enjoying your favorite food for dinner. 

10) Embracing your imperfections 

Another thing that will make you happy and enjoy your life more is letting go of all the self-criticism and doubt

Look – you’re a human with imperfections, just like 100% of people out there. You can focus on them all day long and bring your mood down, or…

You can learn to love them! 

Whether it’s your wonky smile or tendency to laugh in upsetting situations, learn to love who you are, and trust me, you’ll feel much happier because of it. 

11) Seizing the day 

There’s a certain magic about being spontaneous – it shakes life up a little bit. 

So, if you want to enjoy life more, why not make yourself happy by doing one spontaneous thing every week?

It could be going on a day trip to somewhere you’ve never been, or signing up for a class you think looks fun. 

Whatever it is, stop delaying enjoyment. Seize the day and live your life right now!

12) Having a work-life balance 

And whilst you’re seizing the day, you also need to ensure you have a good work-life balance

It’s a no-brainer really – the more time you have to spend with loved ones, or doing your hobbies, the happier you’ll be!

And when you stick to your guns and don’t let work spill over into your personal life, you can be sure that life will be much more enjoyable (and less stressful). 

13) Fostering a positive mindset 

Are you more of a glass-half-full or glass-half-empty type of person?

If it’s the latter, you should consider learning how to foster a positive mindset. This includes:

  • Learning positive self-talk (this relates back to embracing your imperfections)
  • Spending time with positive people 
  • Changing areas of your life that may be stressing you out or causing unhappiness 

Start by making little changes. In time, you’ll notice how on average, you deal with setbacks better. This will allow you to enjoy life more and feel happier as a result! 

14) Putting healthy boundaries in place

I’ve mentioned already how much of an impact our friends can have on us. Having healthy boundaries in place will not only make you happy, but you’ll be able to enjoy their company more. 

Essentially, boundaries are our way of showing ourselves self-respect. It’s when you tell a friend, “I really don’t appreciate it when you text me constantly at work. I need time to reply in the evenings when I’m free.” 

It shows your friends what is acceptable and what isn’t…and without having boundaries in place, the lines can easily get blurred! 

So, if you want to be happy and enjoy life, you need to have boundaries in place in all your relationships – friends, colleagues, family, and romantic partners. 

15) Putting experiences over material objects

I know how tempting it is to have the latest gadgets or a flashy car…but if you want to be truly happy and enjoy a fulfilling life, it’s far better to spend money on experiences!

For example, you may love your new iPhone today. You may even love it tomorrow. But in a year or two, it’ll be old news. 

On the other hand, a holiday in which you experience a new culture, learn about yourself, relax on a beautiful beach and try new foods, will stay with you for a lifetime.

The point is:

The more you invest in experiences that’ll shape your life, the happier you’ll be. This rarely comes from materialistic things which quickly go out of fashion!

16) Being kind to yourself

And the final thing that’ll make you happy and enjoy life more is being kind to yourself

In fact, if you want to achieve any of the above, it’s a requirement! 

You see, the more you treat yourself with kindness and respect, the less negative you’ll feel. Our inner voice is incredibly powerful – it can tell you you can achieve the world, or it can tell you you’re worthless.

You get to decide which voice you listen to and nurture, so choose the kind one if happiness is your goal!  

Kiran Athar

Kiran is a freelance writer with a degree in multimedia journalism. She enjoys exploring spirituality, psychology, and love in her writing. As she continues blazing ahead on her journey of self-discovery, she hopes to help her readers do the same. She thrives on building a sense of community and bridging the gaps between people. You can reach out to Kiran on Twitter: @KiranAthar1

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