Being a happiness magnet sounds pretty good, right?
And the internet is awash with studies as to how to make it happen.
But who are many of these happiness studies based on? A lot of them are based on students. It’s like taking advice from your nineteen year old self, who, if you were anything like me turned out not to know that much at the end of the day!
I once thought that I’d be happy if I get an A+. Then, I thought I’ll be satisfied when I get into a good college.
On and on, the dreams kept coming. I’ll be happy when I get a good job; I’ll be happy when I bag that promotion.
And don’t get me wrong. I was happy to achieve those things. But all of it came with an expiration date and a restlessness of “What do I achieve next to make this last?”
Finally, as everyone does, I had to stop and ask myself, “What truly makes me happy every day?”
Yes, achievements may give me that pleasure for a while.
But how can anyone be truly happy on a normal day, the day with no significant milestones achieved, those days that make up most of our life?
I know that happiness looks different for everyone.
For others, it is fostering connections with friends and family. Whatever happiness means to you, a few simple habits can help you get there.
Because most of what happiness is is a choice.
It’s a skill that can be honed by tweaking tiny habits.
It doesn’t have to be a big lifestyle change, a huge accolade, or anything external. It has to be the small things you and I do can do every single day:
1. Grow your “Thank You” tree and watch your happiness magnet expand
Research has repeatedly proved that gratitude is the antidote to all stress, troubles, and worries. It is the tiniest habit that you can develop immediately and derive instant gratification.
I’ve found that being grateful also keeps me mindful.
After three years of writing in my gratitude journal daily, I notice the abundance around me more proactively than others. It’s a domino effect of two good habits that go hand-in-hand.
Yes, that vacation or that laptop or that dress may make you happy. But pay attention to all that you have already.
Too often, it is easy to take things for granted. So, make an effort to appreciate what’s right in front of you.
You can practice gratitude in many ways. Maybe it is writing in a gratitude journal that works best.
Perhaps it is whispering your gratefulness daily in the morning that keeps your thanking spirit alive.
Whatever you choose to do, gratitude will help you see the world around you in a brighter light. And draw that daily happiness to you.
2. Write your way to becoming a happiness magnet through meditation
I’ll be honest with you. Often, meditation doesn’t work for me. Some days I am in touch with my deeper self; other days, I only wonder what to make for dinner.
But there’s one meditative practice that never fails me: journaling. That’s a big happiness magnet for me.
It has now become commonplace to advise developing a regular journaling practice. It can help you untangle your thoughts, feel lighter, and even aid in problem-solving.
I have found that writing in my journal every night before going to sleep gives me the peace of mind that can only be described as therapeutic.
A side-effect benefit of journaling is heightened self-awareness. Like meditation, some days will be easier than others. But stick with it. It’ll be worth it.
Write with no apprehension about why you’re feeling what you’re feeling. Hold nothing back. Venting to the pages is an instant mood uplifter.
3. How physical self-care can become a happiness magnet
Self-care has become a fad of selling you face masks and scented candles.
I don’t deny that some days these things might help. But our mental health is intricately linked to our physical health.
A healthy body sprouts the seeds for a healthy mind.
Do your basics right: get plenty of sleep, enough exercise, and nutritious food. If you’re consistently short of sleep, you’ll be irritable and moody.
Lack of physical movement will make you lazy. Junk food will leave you with the cravings for more.
Tiny things can make a massive impact on keeping these habits of physical self-care consistent.
Meal prep for the week so that you don’t resort to unhealthy processed food cravings.
Exercise first thing in the morning so that you don’t procrastinate on it. Reserve your hour before bed as a quiet time to get into relaxation mode.
4. Don’t shame your stress
Life can be stressful sometimes. It is impossible to avoid that.
Often what we do in stressful situations is force ourselves to either eradicate the thing causing us stress or indulge in stress-busting activities to ensure we’re not stressed ever, no matter what.
But acknowledging that stress (and even other negative emotions) is a part of life can do us good. There are upsides to stress like an increase in motivation, the building of self-efficacy, etc.
Knowing that everyone has stress and that you can tackle it head-on can help you not only diminish stress from your life but handle it much better than you otherwise would.
5. Enrich your creative self
There are some things for all of us that give us immense joy.
They take us “in the flow” and feel soothing. Take those tasks and make them a part of your calendar and to-do list. Make that time, no matter how short, non-negotiable.
And don’t get the impression that you have to be excellent in these activities or mind-blowingly creative to deserve this time for yourself.
I enjoy drawing mandalas, and I can proudly say that I haven’t gotten any “better” at it in the last three years.
I do it still just for the heck of it. Because I enjoy drawing them.
It takes me in the zone. It’s not my “duty” or “task” but my source of fulfillment and something I do for myself.
Find the things that give your creative spirit nourishment. Make some time for them, even if it’s just 15 minutes, daily.
Final thoughts on being a happiness magnet
Happiness is about making the most of your life. It doesn’t happen by chance, it’s sought out consciously and proactively.
Regardless of your definition of true happiness, incorporating the five habits mentioned here can help you claim it every single day.
What are some of the ways that you find happiness daily? Tell me in the comments below!