August brings change – change in the weather, change in schedules, change of environment, just a lot of change.  And quite frequently, change can bring anxiety, uneasiness, even frustration.  Yet, it also provides a time for growth – a time to learn more about who you are, how you react to life, and ways you can create more of what you want!

I recently came across a quote by Leo Tolstoy: “If you want to be happy, be.”  Such a simple quote, yet such a rich piece of advice.  Let’s dig deeper!  “Happiness is an emotional state characterized by feelings of joy, satisfaction, contentment, and fulfillment, involving positive emotions and life satisfaction.” In other words, happiness is a personal evaluation of your overall feelings about your life in the present.  Notice it doesn’t say an evaluation of the life you have lived, nor does it say anything about the life you fear you won’t live.  It talks about now, in this very moment… YOUR internal state of being.

**An important thing to remember before you continue reading is that happiness is NOT a constant state of euphoria, rather an overall sense of experiencing more positive emotions than negative.  So, while we are going to highlight various ways to “increase your happiness,” the goal is growth in knowledge of who you are, what you want, and how it affects your life in the individual moments.**

Ways to BE Happier: The following list is designed to help you create the space, the awareness, and the intention needed to live happier!

  • Find your purpose in life (also known as your “why”). “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” Knowing what YOUR purpose is helps create that harmony.  Your purpose may be absolute – based in faith, a life-long mission, etc., while other pieces of your purpose may be more relevant to your current situation (i.e. raising children).
  • Journaling helps cultivate happiness. More and more scientific research is being conducted on journaling, and the results show how significant an impact journaling can have on gratitude, mindfulness, self-awareness, and introspection.  All four of these pieces are correlated with happiness!
  • Enjoy the moment! More often than not, our thoughts can either be found dwelling on the past or worried about the future.  Be inspired by this quote: “Don’t cry over the past; it’s gone.  Don’t stress about the future; it hasn’t arrived.  Live in the present and make it beautiful!”  BE in the moment and value it for all it offers!
  • Happiness is contagious. It’s hard to be around someone who smiles all the time without smiling yourself, isn’t it?  Studies show that when we surround ourselves with happy people, we are more likely to be happy ourselves.  The same goes for laughter…it’s contagious!  And extremely therapeutic!  Laughter therapy has proven to be a beneficial aspect of maintaining well-being!

In 1999, the Secret Society of Happy People created what is now known as National Happiness Happens Day (August 8th), a day that encourages happiness all day long by recognizing every moment of glee, joy, delight, and pleasure.  Don’t let these moments pass.  The more we can BE in these moments, the more happiness we can create in our lives.  And happiness brings health benefits, too:

  1. Improved heart health.
  2. Ability to combat stress more effectively.
  3. A stronger immune system.
  4. Overall healthier lifestyle.
  5. Can help reduce pain.
  6. Increased life longevity
  7. Ability to combat stress more effectively.
  8. Increased life longevity. Ability to combat stress more effectively.

Get started on Practicing Happiness Today!

Find your Purpose – Download WellnessWheel  and Values List

Mindfulness Exercise – Download Aligning With Your Purpose