If Leo Tolstoy’s line “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way” is true, then there must be a formula to happiness. (Right?) Though there is room for relativity, the things that add up to our happiness (yours and mine) can’t be that different.
Everyone’s end game is to be happy. The dreams we chase, the relationships we pursue, the things we do. It is pretty obvious that they converge to us wanting and seeking happiness.
A Delphi study researched 68 effective ways to greater happiness and grouped them into seven categories.
Human beings are social creatures. Cultivating healthy relationships and investing in them is key. There is a famous saying that we are the sum of the five people around us. Imagine if we surround ourselves with positive, open, honest, and ambitious people, it is hard not to imbibe those very qualities. Having people in our corner who will love and support us will also help us in improving ourselves by leaps and bounds. That could be in the form of investing in friends and family, joining a club, being nice, socializing with colleagues, and happy marriages.
Purpose in life
We all want our lives to be fulfilling and meaningful. Having a purpose in life makes it all the more satisfying and gives us the zest to wake up in the morning.
Living according to your values, being generous, volunteering, and practicing your religion (if you are religious) are some of the other ways that we give meaning to our lives and in turn become happy.
Happiness doesn’t take shape where there is lethargy, fatigue, and loss of peace of mind. The antidote is to exercise your body and mind. Researchers recommend that we also keep shifting the goalposts by challenging ourselves and to never stop learning.
Taking care of health
This is an extension of leading an active life.
Sleep is another important aspect of keeping oneself in good health. Monitoring health on a regular basis is as important as having sufficient health insurance.
Mental health-care workers must also be accessible, especially in this day and age of fast-paced, highly anxious world.
Whether it is being thankful for the things and people around you, or it is self acceptance, happiness shows up in abundance for us. Laughing and laughing often is told to be the best medicine. Writing about positive experiences also help in training your mind to look for joy.
Saving for a rainy day
Although it doesn’t feature as a prominent role in adding to our happiness, it definitely is a stress-buster. Having a good savings plan and investing durable and other assets can prove to be useful in the long term. Researchers also recommend to minimize credit cards and also to avoid getting into debt.
Creating your own life
This means building a lifestyle that will serve you well and will help you grow. It could mean doing a job that you love. This would also require one to weigh their strengths and weaknesses, and to identify the things and people that make them happy.