Want to be happier this year? Most people do and a few tweaks and habit changes can go a long way to increasing happiness. There’s no instant fix, but being intentional and valuing your mental well-being can help you connect more deeply with others, ease anxiety and boost confidence. These strategies can help improve your mental health and boost your happiness.
- Make relaxation a routine - Stress is a part of life, but knowing how to respond to feeling overwhelmed or stressed out can help you manage it. Meditation is a popular way to relax and lower stress, music soothes some folks, deep breathing is a good way to calm down and so is yoga. Whatever way you choose to relax, just make it a habit.
- Practice gratitude - Focusing on what you’re grateful for can create a positive outlook on your life. It also helps reduce stress, ease depression symptoms and elevates your mood.
- Value social interaction - Spending time with people you like can help you feel less lonely and give you an emotional support system. If you can’t get together with loved ones in person, video calls and even texts can help you stay connected.
- Take care of your physical health - Mental health is directly tied to physical health, one can’t be good without the other. The three main areas to target in 2023 are sleep, nutrition and exercise.
- Sleep - If you don’t get enough, your brain can’t rest and recover, which makes it tougher to regulate emotions and deal with stress.
- Food and hydration - Drink plenty of water, feed the body the nutrients it needs and add in mood-boosting foods like dark chocolate, bananas, avocado, berries and even coffee.
- Exercise - Being active is another way to ease stress and anxiety, help you sleep better and make you feel better, too.
- Monitor your social media intake - We can lose hours scrolling through social media, plus, if you’re comparing yourself to the picture-perfect looking lives people share there, it can lead to feeling inadequate and more anxious.
- Make yourself laugh - When you’re feeling down or stressed, watch your favorite movie, show or even funny cat videos to make you laugh. Dancing reduces the stress hormone cortisol, but anything that brings a smile to your face is worth doing.