How to Increase Happiness
We often put effort into improving productivity, our body, our focus, our work, and our fitness.
How about working on how to increase happiness?
Did you know that according to Harvard researcher Shawn Anchor your brain actually works 31% better at positive than at negative, neutral or stressed states? When your brain is positive you actually are more creative, more productive and have more energy!
Sounds worth figuring out this being positive thing right?
But with looming deadlines, a super busy work schedule, family commitments and a business to run it can be hard to stay positive.
Well, today I want to go through some easy things that you can start to do each day to boost your positivity in order to boost energy, productivity and creativity. These are the same strategies that Shaun Anchor shares with large corporations to improve their productivity and the companies bottom-line.
The benefits of a daily gratitude practice are huge!
Totally underrated but this could change your life! Each day write down three things you’re grateful for, either as soon as you wake up or before you go to bed. This actually retrains your brain to scan for the positive in your day and after just 21 days of making this a habit, corporations and individuals have noticed massive differences in their positivity and productivity!!
Find it hard to remember to do this? A great option is to invest in a 5-minute journal. (Check them out HERE) Or try habit stacking your gratitude practice (Thanks to James Clear for this one). What’s habit stacking?
Lets say you want to develop a habit of writing down three things you are grateful for every morning.
Take 5 minutes and write down everything you already do automatically in the morning. Do you brush your teeth? Have a coffee? Use the washroom? There are a bunch of habits you already have on autopilot and so what you want to do is link your gratitude practice with one of those habits. So perhaps every time you have coffee you write down three things you are grateful for. Or before you clean your teeth your gratitude list needs to be completed. Linking a new habit with an existing habit can help you develop the new habit faster!
Moving your body through adopting a lifestyle of fitness has just so many health benefits. We sit far too much these days and could benefit from adopting an identity of someone that moves their body throughout the day. Exercising at the gym not only releases endorphins which makes you feel good but can be a much better energy booster than that afternoon coffee. However, exercise is only one component of living a “fitness oriented” life. Fitness can be integrated into your day by taking a 2 minute pushup break, or a 3 minute stretching session while on the phone with a client. The research shows that the little things you do throughout the day is more important than simply getting to the gym 3 times per week. There are lots of options to get more movement into your day no matter how busy you are. Even incidental exercise can be beneficial so get off your bus a stop earlier or take the stairs!
You brain and body will thank you.
Like something a little more structured, try a quick HIIT workout! I have heaps of suggestions on how to incorporate HIIT into your day in this article HERE.
Journaling is another technique that when incorporated into your daily habits can be super powerful. Writing down one positive experience throughout the day actually trains your brain to relive the positive experience. Journaling can also help improve creativity, strengthen your self discipline, boost memory and comprehension and help you achieve your goals.
In fact, according to Forbes, journaling is the number 1 productivity tool that you’re not taking advantage of! Its helpful to record wins as well as set backs and helps you think about how to get rid of inhibitors blocking your progress.
Meditation has actually been shown to change the size and shape of the brain. It’s like resistance training for your muscles leading to a more toned shape. It actually thickens the regions of the brain associated with complex thought, bodily awareness, concentration & problem solving. As well as slows the brains natural aging process!
It also helps to calm your mind, reducing anxiety and improving your ability to deal with stressful situations. It actually teaches the brain to focus and has been shown that it can improve your sense of wellbeing and compassion. This one is a super powerful way to not only boost your brain function and improve your body but also make you happier!
5. Random Acts of Kindness
How can this one not make you happy, yet when was the last time you did a random act of kindness to a complete stranger?
Can you remember?
Random acts of kindness to strangers, colleagues or loved ones make you and them feel more positive. It doesn’t have to be a big gesture, just pick up an extra coffee on your mid morning coffee break at work, or send an email appreciating the hard work one of your team members has been doing. Send a loved one a little note to say you are thinking of them. You might be surprised of the effect it has on your and them.
So as I always say information is nothing without action!
And small steps build on each other to end up with massive progress so choose one of the above tips that you are going to implement this week and let me know which one you have chosen over on my Facebook page HERE.
To find out more about your health and whether a customized approach is the way to go for you, take our High Performance Quiz. Click below!