According to the 2018 World Happiness Report, the happiest people in the world are the Finish, followed by the Norwegian and the Danish. The U.S., on the other hand, ranks 18th, taking a hit of 4 down compared to last year. A disheartening progression, no?
In light of March 20th, International Day of Happiness, we’d like to offer you some simple, yet effective tips to bring more happiness to your daily routine. The U.S. might not be one of the top 10 happiest countries in the world, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be one of the happiest people out there today and any other day!
- Wake up one hour earlier than you usually do
There’s numerous research out there about the benefits of waking up early in the morning. Wildly successful people across different industries often speak about the importance of an early morning routine – to name a few, Tim Cook, Sallie Krawcheck, Richard Branson, and Oprah.
- Work out
While exercising before 8 am might seem more like a punishment than a source of joy, don’t be too quick to dismiss it. There’s hardly a better way to kick off your day than boosting your dopamine levels, ultimately leading to increased productivity and better mental health.
If you haven’t already, consider getting a weekly or monthly special at a yoga studio or gym near your home or office. This way you won’t waste precious time commuting. Another long-term alternative is bringing the workout studio to your home with the online on-demand classes.
- Breakfast before coffee
Remember to replenish your body with nutrients before starting your day. You’d be surprised how big of a difference a protein smoothie or a hearty omelet makes.
- No rushing
One of the worst habits most of us have is rushing out the door and not taking a single full breath until we reach the office. Wouldn’t you agree that this mindset substitutes happiness with anxiety and leaves no space for gratitude and compassion?
So, on International Day of Happiness try not to rush. Look around you, think about all the wonderful things you’re going to do today and the kind people that surround you. The peace and mindfulness will transcend your commute and leave a positive mark on everything you tackle that day.
- Take your lunch break
Contrary to Europeans, most Americans get so wrapped up in their work, that they either eat lunch at their desks or forget about it altogether.
Take a page out of the European lunch handbook and step away from the office, the computer, and the smartphone. Go to a nearby park, take a book, and enjoy your meal and this moment.
- The right tunes
Concentration and focus don’t always come easy. The right music, however, can be a tremendous aid in tuning out and getting stuff done.
- Infused water
Add a couple slices of cucumber or fruit to your water. It’s a great way to stay hydrated and it’s the perfect fix if you’re bored drinking plain water. Here’re some recipes to spark your imagination.
What is a better way to wrap up a long, yet happy day than treating yourself to your favorite chocolate? Don’t be shy! Go buy your favorite brand – the one you usually get for special occasions. Make today special – you earned it.
- You deserve a massage
Whether you’re recovering from an injury, experiencing neck pain, trying to avoid the flu, trying to reduce sciatica pain, want to de-stress, or simply get a better night’s sleep, massage is the answer you’re looking for.
Take 10-20 minutes at the end of your day to reminisce about everything that happened while focusing on the little joys and special moments you shared with others. If you’re already using a meditation app like Calm or Headspace, try finding a special guided meditation you haven’t done before.