8 Healthy Habits to Lead a Happier Life
Take a minute to reflect on your day, week or month - are you happy with the way things turned out, or would you have done things differently?
We all want to live our lives to the fullest, but it is important to remember that true happiness starts from the inside. It's no secret - to live a fuller and happier life, all you really need is determination to change, and consistency to stay on track.
It may not be easy, but all big changes start with small steps, and here are some steps you can take to lead a happier life:
1. Be In Nature
Nature has a way of healing your body, and making you feel grounded. Simple activities like going for a stroll outdoors, walking barefoot on grass or sand, swimming at the beach, hiking up mountains, or even hugging a tree - can completely change your mood and energy.
Beginner's tip: Try doing this at least once a week to start.
2. Practice Gratitude
The best way to attract more happiness is to be thankful for all the good things in your life. This can be anything from your family, friends, objects, nature, resources, food, air, and so on.
Beginner's tip: Try thinking of one thing you're grateful for when you wake up.
The main reason why meditation is such a powerful technique, is because it keeps you fully focused on the present moment, instead of living in your thoughts. You can meditate online (we recommend Insight Timer app) or book a meditation class at a yoga studio nearby.
Beginner's tip: Try starting with a weekly guided meditation, before practicing on your own.
4. Move Your Body
Movement is medicine. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals such as endorphins and seratonin, which help to boost your energy levels, happiness and wellbeing.
Beginner's tip: Try starting with a 30-min walk twice a week, or any exercise or sport that you enjoy.
5. Eat Nutritious Meals
Food has the power to transform your mood, and this is because food has nutrients, minerals and chemicals that can directly affect your brain and energy levels. Complex carbs (sweet potato, oats, quinoa), proteins and veggies high in nutrients can boost happiness, whereas flour-based foods, refined sugar and highly processed foods can leave you feeling drained.
Beginner's tip: Try adding more colourful veggies and fruits to your diet, and reducing sugar intake.
6. Get Sunshine
Did you know that just 5-15 minutes of sunlight can significantly improve your Vitamin D levels, increase serotonin, and boost your mood? Early morning sun is the best - just remember to wear sunscreen.
Beginner's tip: Try to get 10 minutes direct sunlight at least twice a week.
7. Set Boundaries
Setting healthy boundaries is so important as it allows you to protect your energy. In simpler terms, it's basically just setting guidelines for yourself. Examples include: saying no when you don't want to do something, unfollowing negative accounts on social media, communicating to someone that you don't like something they are doing, not allowing someone to gaslight you or disrespect you.
Beginner's tip: Try noting down one thing that makes your energy levels dip, and think of how you can avoid it happening again.
8. Do What You Love
The easiest way to bring a smile to your face is doing something you truly love. Whether it's doing an activity, being creative, playing with a dog, or spending time with certain people - making time for things you enjoy is the best act of self-care.
Beginner's tip: Try doing one thing that you love, at least once a week.