How Your Daily Habits Impact Your Mental Health – 5 Ways to Boost Happiness
Teodora GhiurPublished in October 2020 / Updated in December 2020
Your mental well-being is the result of your thoughts, actions, and attitude towards life. Happiness does not happen accidentally. Instead, it results from living following the things that nourish your soul and give you a sense of fulfillment.
The good news is that happiness is in your control. You can choose to do things which make you feel good about yourself. Leaving your mood up to the random encounters you have during your day or in the hands of other people can fill you with disappointment and a lack of control over life.
Find hobbies that lift your spirits
If you have a difficult job or if you find yourself drained by your responsibilities, it’s time to incorporate some fun things into your life! Seriously, you need a hobby that fills your heart with joy and makes you forget about the stresses.
A lot of people underestimate the importance of finding time for themselves or giving themselves adequate self-care. In today’s chaotic world, self-care is not a luxury that only people who work extremely hard can afford – instead, it is a necessity that keeps us going. It’s our reserve of fuel during the difficult weeks when Friday seems thousands of miles away.
Don’t have a hobby yet, or you don’t know where to start in this whole business of ‘looking after yourself’? Don’t worry; things are way simpler in reality.
Ask yourself, right now, what exactly do you need? What do you feel like doing, and what would make your mind switch off from all the worries? If you need a shopping session, let your girlfriends know. If a good sweat in the gym would fix the problem, then so be it. Perhaps you need a cozy night at home listening to soppy songs; no one will judge you!
Just listen to your intuition and see what it is that your body needs now. Then immerse yourself in that activity and let the relaxation take over. You definitely deserve it.
Place positive reminder cues around your house
The content of your mind is highly influenced by the information you expose yourself to. Are you wondering why you can’t find the silver lining while you scroll down through all the negative news about what’s happening in the world?
The truth is, the mind produces the thoughts with the input it receives daily. If you are binging on drama and negativity, guess what will play out in your mind? Definitely not bubbling happiness. You have to get really selective with the messages you consume – in fact, you should get deliberate about it.
One thing that you can do to remind yourself of the importance of boosting your mood is to place positive messages in the area where you live or work.
For example, you can place messages that will lift your self-confidence, such as “You got this” or “I love myself fully.” Whenever you see them around you, your mind will register their meaning and will absorb their content.
Over time, you can turn these mantras in your default thinking – remember that the input going in your mind is the output that your mind produces?
Don’t skip the gym
Are you wondering why on Earth am I bringing the pain from the gym into this wonderful discussion on happiness? Before you start feeling too guilty about the gym membership left unused in the last few months, let’s think about the science behind exercising and its link to good moods.
When we exercise, our brains produce endorphins, which are our “feel good” hormones, making us more relaxed and optimistic. During your gym session, the effort you put in is wonderfully rewarded with a boost of these happiness chemicals.
So, next time when you want to say pass to your gym session, think about whether you really want to say no to those wonderful endorphins!
Do a gratefulness exercise every morning
The thoughts that you have the first moment when you wake up can prime your brain and mood for the entire morning, or even for the whole day!
Choosing to focus on your life’s positive aspects can make you more optimistic, resilient, and can program your mind to keep an optimistic attitude throughout your day.
One exercise that you can do to wake up in a good mood is to think about or write in your journal three things that you are grateful for. They don’t have to be big things. Even the fact that you have food for your breakfast can be something to be thankful for!
Connect with people and with your loves ones
What would life be without people? Our friends and family members make our existence richer and our difficulties easier to bear. When you need some cheering up during a difficult moment, do not hesitate to get in touch with your loved ones.
Take some time off in your day to connect with a colleague, call an old friend, or have a heart-to-heart with your mom. We are social beings; therefore, a big part of a fulfilled life comes from meaningful relationships with others.
Remember, happiness is never the product of a single achievement or fulfilled goal – it is the result of the habits that we have day in and day out, of the thoughts that we choose, and the people that we surround ourselves with!
What things will you be doing for your mental wellbeing today?