What is the most important thing in life? Contrary to popular opinion, it is not money, fame nor even power. It is happiness. This is all you really need to enjoy a high quality of life. Plain and simple.
There are plenty of people around the world who live in 3rd world countries with nothing more than the shirts on their back. And yet, often these are the happiest people on earth.
This illustrates how you don’t need much to be happy. So, what is their secret? How can you boost your happiness to sky-high levels? Funnily enough, there are plenty of tips and tricks which have been proven to work wonders.
1. Spend money on others.
When many of us are sad, we often go out and buy something in an effort to cheer ourselves up. This could be as simple as a chocolate bar or as extravagant as a new sports car. But, stunning new research has shown that if you really want to use the money to increase your happiness you need to spend it on other people.
A study from 2008, gave people envelopes full of money half were instructed to spend it on themselves while the other half were instructed to donate the money to charity or buy a gift for a friend.
Individuals who spend money on others reported much higher levels of happiness.
2. Listen to Sad Songs
When we are feeling blue, many of us put in our headphones zone out and play our favourite music but before you choose the happiest songs in your playlist. You might want to listen to this, a 2014 study found that those listening to sad music actually received beneficial emotional effects.
These effects included regulation of negative emotion and mood. In simpler terms, sad music helps you handle your bad moods. So if you really want to cheer yourself up, play the saddest song you can find in your playlist.
3. Drink your coffee!
We’re guessing no one was expected this one. There’s been a lot of talk about how coffee might be good or bad for you but not many people are discussing its effect on mood.
There have actually been a few studies that have looked into this and the results are pretty stunning. One of the most interesting studies was published in 2016 and it found that 1 cup of coffee per day equated to an 8% decrease in the risk for depression (up to a limit of 500mg of caffeine per day)
Why is coffee so good at fighting off depression? Researchers aren’t 100% sure but they think it might have something to with Antioxidants and Anti-Inflammatories present in coffee, as well as its link to dopamine production
Of all the things we’re listing here, meditation probably has the most conclusive science to back it up. Meditation has been practised for thousands of years, long before the science of psychology even existed people have been aware of its benefits for a very long time and its ability to relieve stress is well known.
And yes, numerous scientific studies have been able to back this up proving that there is a link between meditation and reduced stress and anxiety. Examples include studies of people in high-stress situations such as nursing students, or people who were dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Meditation worked wonders in almost all situations.
Want to know more? Have a read of our article on how to meditate properly.
5. Go for a Walk
Sometimes the simplest methods are often the most effective seems like this is definitely the case when dealing with sadness. As research has shown that merely going for a walk can be a major game-changer.
Some studies, studied the positive effects of simply getting outside and experiencing nature. A walk in the forest for example others found that walking in any situation increased happiness simply because it involved exercise. going for a walk seems like a really good idea to cheer yourself up.
6. Get Your Feelings off of your Chest
Keeping your emotions bottled up inside of you is never a good idea and it definitely helps to get things off of your chest. Have you ever felt that massive feeling of relief when you confess your fears and worries? It really does work wonders and science seems to confirm this.
One recent study looked at how recording a negative emotional experience can actually calm our nerves and helps us deal with our worries. Those who were writing about their emotional experiences were much calmer and relaxed than those who were writing about other subjects.
As you can see the cold and calculated laboratories of science can actually teach us a lot about how to warm up our hearts and cheer ourselves up. Want more ways to cheer yourself up? Here are 11 really easy ways to become a much happier person!