We’re nearly three months into 2019 and you might already be feeling the burn. With so much going on in our inter-connected lives, sometimes, we lose track of what’s most important. Sometimes, we forget how to laugh and enjoy ourselves.
So, if you’ve been feeling a touch blue and you’re ready for a splash of sunshine to brighten your day, we have good news. The International Day of Happiness is just around the corner.
Why an International Day of Happiness?
In July 2012, the United Nations decided the world needed to chill, and proclaimed March 20 the International Day of Happiness to recognize the relevance of happiness and well-being as a fundamental goal and aspiration for all human beings. Not to mention, the importance of a more balanced and inclusive approach to economic growth (that doesn’t compromise our well-being).
And because we’re obviously all very busy people, the UN decided a whole day was required to remind us to be happy and human.
The secret to happiness
Just kidding – there’s no “secret”. But there are a few ways you can boost your happiness factor this month (and forever).
That is, be kind, be generous, and give to others without expecting anything in return. A 2016 neuroscientific study on giving vs. receiving social support found that giving had better brain benefits than receiving, proving that helping others also helps yourself.
As a Chinese proverb says:
If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap.
If you want happiness for a day, go fishing.
If you want happiness for a month, get married.
If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody else.
More from neuroscience – social (or emotional) connection is a fundamental human need, staving off feelings of loneliness and hopelessness. Social connection isn’t about how many friends you have and how many times you go out on school nights, what’s most important is the quality of your connections. So, we see this one as permission to invite your closest friends out for a lazy long lunch this weekend and enjoy their company.
Introduce a daily mindfulness practice and train yourself to be more aware and grateful of the world around you. Whether that’s exercising outdoors, sitting with nature, forest-bathing as the Japanese do, or simply taking a moment at the end of every day to sit silently and breathe.
Once you’re feeling mindful, note down three things you’re most grateful for each day. The more you learn to appreciate what you have, the less negative feelings will consume you and the happier you’ll feel!
What makes you happy?
Our team will be getting together to share what makes us happy on our Happiness Wall this year to boost positivity and well-being in the workplace. What are the little things you do each day to help boost your happy factor?