Guide Well-Being: Happiness in a Worthwhile Life

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Pursue happiness indirectly : Rather than constantly monitoring your emotions and striving to feel better, try to organize your daily life around activities that are naturally enjoyable—including some of the ones below. Practice savoring , the art of maintaining and deepening positive feelings by becoming more aware of them. Research suggests that our ability to savor impacts how much of a mood boost we get from happy events. Give thanks: Research by Michael McCullough, Robert Emmons , Lyubomirsky, and others has revealed the power of simply counting our blessings on a regular basis.

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Practice kindness: Research by Elizabeth Dunn and her colleagues finds that people report greater happiness when they spend money on others than when they spend it on themselves, even though they initially think the opposite would be true. Similarly, neuroscience research shows that when we do nice things for others, our brains light up in areas associated with pleasure and reward.

Give up grudges: Groundbreaking studies by Everett Worthington , Michael McCullough , and their colleagues show that when we forgive those who have wronged us, we feel better about ourselves, experience more positive emotions, and feel closer to others. Studies show that regular physical activity increases happiness and self-esteem, reduces anxiety and stress, and can even lift symptoms of depression.

Spend time in nature : People who are more connected to nature tend to experience more positive emotions, vitality, and life satisfaction.

Precis of Well- Being: Happiness in a Worthwhile Life | SpringerLink

Get rest: Research has consistently linked lower sleep to lower happiness. Pay attention: Studies show that people who practice mindfulness —the moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, and external circumstances—not only have stronger immune systems but are more likely to be happy and enjoy greater life satisfaction, and they are less likely to be hostile or anxious. Pioneering research by Richard Davidson, Jon Kabat-Zinn , and others has found that a basic eight-week mindfulness training program can significantly improve our physical and psychological well-being.

Spend money in the right ways by buying social experiences, giving to others, and expressing your identity. It also suggests why more egalitarian countries consistently rank among the happiest in the world.

15 Tips to Boost Your Well-Being and Happiness

Understanding yourself better can help you choose habits that align with your personality, your situation, and your goals. What Are the Pitfalls and Limitations of Happiness? Paradoxically, it may require making room for negative emotions: High emodiversity —experiencing many positive and negative emotions—is linked to less depression, more than high levels of positive emotion alone. Experiencing major adversity can actually help us better savor the present moment.

There's more to life than being happy - Emily Esfahani Smith

Intense or manic levels of happiness may not afford us the same creativity boost and cognitive flexibility that happiness typically does. This article — and everything on this site — is funded by readers like you.

Connecting psychology to the world, and the world to psychology

To examine this hypothesis, we will conduct a series of studies that use diverse methods and samples. We will develop a reliable and valid self-report scale of a psychologically rich life and administer it to adults. We will ask college students to complete a day outline diary to test whether or not participants who seek a psychologically rich life experience a more full range of emotions than those who seek a happy or a perfectionist life.

As we suspect that cultures will vary on their understandings of the good life, much of our research takes place across diverse cultures.


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One of those studies will engage in archival analysis of ethnographies from across societies in order to document and describe the frequency in which these cultures make reference to the three good lives. Another study will directly participants from different cultures to reflect upon the ideal life and engage in free association.

These study will involve collaborators from at least nine nations, including Sweden, Bulgaria, Ghana, Mozambique, China and Japan.

Happiness Around the World: Ensuring Well-Being by Remembering That Which Makes Life Worthwhile

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