10 scientifically proven ways to be happier

Time.com reprinted an article from Inc.com with 10 scientifically proven ways to make yourself happier. I can’t reprint it all but I will give you some of the highlights. You should click the link to read it all.

Quick summary of the ideas, but click the link to read why it works.

  1. Exercise – even seven minutes a day can make you happier.
  2. Sleep more — Without sleep you are more sensitive to negative emotions and you actually remember negative things more clearly than positive things.
  3. Spend time with friends and family.
  4. Go outside. Even 20 minutes outdoors can greatly impact your mood.
  5. Help others – The article says 100 hours per year is the sweet spot for feeling better.
  6. Smiling – but not fake smiles, real smiles.
  7. Plan a trip even if you can’t take one. Just the act of planning or thinking about a trip can make you happier.
  8. Meditate – It clears your mind and calms you down.
  9. Shorten your commute. — Enough said Atlanta! No surprise there!
  10. Practice gratitude – I love this idea of keeping a gratitude journal or telling a friend or spouse three things you are grateful for each day.

I definitely feel happier when I fit in exercise and just even sit outside. I think I don’t get enough time doing fun with friends or family. (Obviously we have no family out here.) I need to work on meditating (see my later post on finding your happy place) and being thankful. I have no scientific evidence of this but I think humming and poppy music can make you happier too!

What things make you happy? Do you do any of these items? What did you think of the evidence of why they work?

15 comments Add your comment


January 16th, 2014
12:30 pm

#1. Not being told what to do.

Just sayin.....

January 16th, 2014
12:31 pm

Above all, marry well!!!


January 16th, 2014
1:13 pm

Make sure veryone knows the Wolrd revolves around you.


January 16th, 2014
2:02 pm

Doing “it”.

And ALWAYS remember...

January 16th, 2014
2:04 pm

…that YOU are in control of your happiness – your spouse is NOT responsible for YOUR happiness; he / she can add to it, but only YOU can control it…

Just look at the list...

January 16th, 2014
2:06 pm

…all items involve you doing something just for you, not someone else doing something for you…


January 16th, 2014
2:16 pm

I like # 3,4,5,6,10.

A few weeks ago, I spent a lot of time working from home and was enjoying not having to get out in the ATL traffic. I also worked in my pajamas and did not even have to put on makeup. My husband joked with me to please get dressed before he came home. We laughed about it.

As much as I like the slower pace, I miss getting out and seeing the children and teachers. Meeting new people inspires me.

Wish I could be better at #2 but I do not sleep very well.

I do think # 4 is important too. Just having fresh air seems to improve your mood. This is why I do not understand the GA schools who have to keep the kids indoors when it is below 40.I think a quick walk outside in the fresh air is good for the kids.

No matter what my day is like, so many have it a lot worse and I try to remember that!


January 16th, 2014
2:33 pm

I always tell this to the children…”Everyone has a smile…some haven’t used theirs in quite a while!”


January 16th, 2014
2:58 pm

#7 is stupid


January 16th, 2014
3:30 pm

I agree with most and do most of these things… I work from home so it makes most of these items much easier to do. I don’t have to commute, so that leaves more time for sleep, exercise, hanging out with friends, volunteering, etc.

@Jarvis- I agree #7 is dumb. I’m not planning something and then being disappointed I can’t go.


January 16th, 2014
4:05 pm

@ Jarvis and Techmom…I am always planning a trip! I opened a fortune cookie this week that said” “You will be taking a trip on an airplane soon…enjoy!” Made me laugh as that is just about any month of the year!


January 16th, 2014
4:58 pm

I rescued a puppy, now I’m euphoric

Atlanta Mom

January 16th, 2014
5:22 pm

ummm Theresa, what about your kids? Don’t they count as family?


January 16th, 2014
5:36 pm

We have no EXTENDED family here besides my sister. Our closest family is 400 miles away. We have met lots of people who we feel we are closer to than many of our family members. Relationships are what you make of them IMHO.


January 17th, 2014
10:28 am

Remember there is a world bigger than the one you live in.