(I recently updated this post & now there are 18 happy hacks)
Everyone just wants to be happy, right? It’s something all humankind has in common. The desire for happiness.
Happiness is the ultimate reason why we want to lose weight. Why we want that new job. It’s the reason we want to find love and the reason we want that new handbag. So we’ll be happy.
Happiness is not as hard to attain as some might think. I believe everyone is capable of being happy right here, right now. Of course, there are times in our lives when we have troubles or go through trials. During those times it can be difficult to experience joy, understandably.
But other times we’re just in a funk. We’re in a bad mood and we don’t really know why. I want to help you fix that.
THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. READ THE FULL DISCLAIMER HERE.
HOW TO BE HAPPY NOW
Life is too short to waste it being unhappy or grumpy. Especially for no good reason at all. So keep reading to discover 18 mood boosting hacks 🙂
1 | STOP THINKING NEGATIVELY
Many of us without even realizing it, bring ourselves down with our own negative thinking. Learn to be more mindful of your thoughts. Don’t allow yourself to think negatively. Thinking negative thoughts doesn’t do you any good. I personally believe it can have very harmful effects on your mental health as well as your physical. Get in the habit of thinking positively. Get in the habit of expecting something great to happen.
If this is an area where you struggle I highly recommend you read Who Switched Off My Brain? Controlling Toxic Thoughts & Emotions By Dr. Caroline Leaf. I’ve personally read this book and I highly recommend it. Research shows that as much as 87% to 95% of mental and physical illnesses are a direct result of toxic thinking. In this best-selling book, Dr. Caroline Leaf clearly communicates 13 ways to detox your thought life and live a life of physical, mental, and emotional wholeness.
She also has another book called Switching On Your Brain: The Key To Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health. I haven’t read this one but it has amazing reviews on Amazon.
2 | GO OUTSIDE
Studies have shown that if you improve your vitamin D levels you can improve your mood. And one of the easiest ways to improve our vitamin D levels is to get out in the sun. Our bodies create vitamin D when our skin is exposed to the sun. So how much time should you spend in the sun? Well, that depends on your skin pigmentation. The lighter your skin is, the less time you need in the sun. The darker it is, the more you will need. On average you should try to get 5-45 minutes of sunshine without sunscreen, everyday, depending on the shade of your skin.
There is also just something about being in nature and breathing in the fresh air. Don’t under estimate the mood boosting benefits of a nice walk through your neighborhood or hike through some nearby trails. One of my favorite ways to find some new outdoor adventure ideas is through Airbnb.com. They don’t just have vacation rentals. They also have experiences. Some of the popular experiences near me in Southern California are a guided hike to the Hollywood sign, hiking with wolves (yes, real life wolves), hiking with rescue dogs and there is so much more!
3 | Try a Mood Boosting Supplement
There are many different natural supplements that can greatly improve your mood. A few of my favorites are 5htp and Joy filled by Happy Healthy Hippie. I’ll be writing an entire blog post about mood boosting supplements soon! But for now if you’re considering natural supplements I highly suggest you read The Mood Cure by Julia Ross. This book is amazing! It includes an individual mood type questionnaire that can help you figure out which natural supplements will work best for you. I love this book and I can’t recommend it enough!
4 | SURROUND YOURSELF WITH HAPPY PEOPLE
We’ve all heard the saying “misery loves company”. Unhappy people want to make those around them just as unhappy as they are. In the same way happy people tend to make those around them happy. When you surround yourself with joyful people their joy somehow begins to rub off on you.
5 | Take a course in happiness
Udemy.com has many courses or classes you can take in happiness. Think of them as therapy sessions but at a fraction of the cost. You can check them out here! First time customers will receive up to 90% off their first course plus Udemy offers a 30 day money back guarantee. One of their best selling courses in happiness is called 30 Day Challenge to a More Productive and Much Happier You and it is taught by Chris Haroun who is an award winning MBA professor, venture capitalist and author. You can enroll in the course for only $19.99. Check it out!
6 | STOP COMPARING
I believe it was Theodore Roosevelt who said “Comparison is the thief of joy”. I’m not sure if truer words were ever spoken. When we continuously compare ourselves and our lives to others we once again bring ourselves down without even realizing it. Similar to negative thinking we need to become more mindful of our thoughts and stop allowing this type of thinking to enter into our mind.
7 | GET SOME SLEEP
Sometimes the best cure for a bad mood is a good night’s sleep or even just an afternoon nap. Studies have shown that sleep loss leads to increased negative mood and I’m sure anyone who has experienced sleep problems would agree with that. So make sure you are getting 7-8 hours of good quality sleep every night and if this is a struggle for you read this post for tips about how to get a better night’s sleep.
8 | REFLECT & BE GRATEFUL
When things begin to go wrong in our lives it can be so easy to focus on the negative and forget about all the good. During these moments we need to refocus our attention off the negative and back on all the things we’re grateful for. No matter what difficulties you face there is always something to be grateful for. So keep a gratitude journal and write in it everyday or simply just take time everyday to think deeply about all the goodness that surrounds you.
9 | GET MOVING
Personally, I started working out to get in shape but I actually stuck to my workout routine because of the profound effects it had on my mood. Watch the video below to learn more about the brain changing benefits of exercise.
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to boost your mood. When we workout, endorphin’s and other feel good chemicals in our brain increase. Exercise also reduces the stress hormones in our bodies. Aim for 30-60 minutes of exercise 3-5 days a week. If you want to workout but struggle to stay motivated read this post!
10 | PRAY
Sometimes we begin to lose our joy because we’re not spending enough time with the Lord. In the same way that our bodies will grow weak and sick without the nutrients food provides, our souls will grow tired and burdened without the nourishment we receive from prayer. So the next time your feeling down and you can’t really figure out why, ask yourself when was the last time you had intimate, quiet time with the Lord.
11 | READ YOUR BIBLE
This tip goes hand and hand with the last one. When we become stressed or overwhelmed with life it’s a clear indication we are spending too much time in the world and not enough time with the Lord. Our souls not only desire prayer time with the Lord but also time in His word. Jesus said “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Matthew 4:4. When devote time to reading our bible, we are feeding our souls.
Read this post to discover 5 Reasons Why You Should Read Your Bible Everyday!
12 | CRY IT OUT
There are times in life when we just need to have a good cry. Life is hard. Sometimes as wives and mothers we’re trying to do so many things and it’s no wonder we’re overwhelmed and tired. But we can’t just hold it in all of the time. It’s okay to cry and admit you’re stressed out. Did you know there are actually three types of tears? Basal tears, reflex tears and psychic tears. Psychic tears, the tears you cry as a result of an emotional response, contain a natural painkiller called leucine enkephalin. So there is actually scientific evidence that crying will help you to feel better.
13 | DO MORE OF WHAT YOU LOVE
People are busier than ever. There’s work, grocery shopping, cleaning, laundry, running the kids here and there and so on and so on. When was the last time you spent the afternoon doing something you truly enjoy? Busier is not better. Life can’t just be about work and money. We have to make time for things that bring us joy. So take sometime to really figure out the things that truly make your soul happy and learn to say no to the things that don’t.
14 | CHANGE THINGS UP
The one thing in life that is inevitable is change. Change is something that can not be avoided. We can grow discontent and unhappy when we find ourselves in a rut. Although, we may not realize it, our mind, bodies and souls desire change. When we start a new hobby, change careers, remodel our home, whatever the change maybe, excitement and passion begins to grow in us. We begin to feel alive again. So ask yourself if it’s time to make a change in your life and seek the Lord for wisdom and guidance.
15 | RECOGNIZE WHATS BRINGING YOU DOWN & FIX IT
Sometimes the reason we’re sad is not a mystery. Sometimes there is something in our lives that’s quite obviously hindering our happiness. Maybe your unhappy with your job, your appearance, your home. Maybe you’re in a bad relationship. Whatever the reason is, don’t accept the idea that there is nothing you can do about it. Pin point the problem and develop a plan of action. If you despise your job, look into starting a new career. If you’re in a bad relationship get out of it or seek counseling. You get the idea.
Also if you’re in this situation, don’t forget tips 1, 6 and 12. Try not focus on the negative, be grateful for what you do have and recognize when it’s time to make a change.
16 | DO SOMETHING NICE FOR SOMEONE ELSE
The Bible is all about self sacrifice. Picking up our crosses. Serving others. I don’t think this is just because the effects it has on the ones we serve but it’s also because of the effect it has on our own souls. We were created to serve. There is a satisfaction and purpose we experience when we put someone else’s needs before our own.
VolunteerMatch.org is a great place to find volunteer opportunities. I also love using Airbnb.com to find service opportunities as well believe it or not. Many of the experiences I mentioned earlier actually involve local nonprofits. For example, the hiking with wolves experience was created by an animal rescue organization called Wolf Connection. They take in wolf dogs bred in captivity who were confiscated due to animal cruelty, rescued from the fur trade, or who simply needed a new, permanent place to call home. Not only does hiking with the wolves help give them exercise but also 100% of what you pay goes directly to the nonprofit organization which then goes towards the health and care of the wolf pack.
There are many similar experiences on Airbnb, you just have to look around. And don’t forget to use this link to receive $15 off your first experience of $50 or more!
17 | RECOGNIZE SPIRITUAL WARFARE
There will be times in your life when everything just seems to be going wrong. Or when no matter what you do you can’t seem to get the joy you once had back. Or what happens most often is you experience both of these situations at the same time. When you go through these times you need to consider whether you may be dealing with spiritual warfare.
If you’re a Christian, you have a very real enemy. And there will be times when he’ll try to wear you down. 1 Peter 1:7 says “These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold–though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.” So if you’re experiencing this, write this verse on your heart, stay in the word and pray without ceasing. And most importantly don’t lose faith.
18 | See a Therapist
If you discover none of the tips on this list work for you I would suggest speaking with a therapist. There are actually many websites that offer online therapy. Such as OnlineTherapy.com. You can learn more about it here. And use this link to receive 20% off your first month.
I really hope these tips help you. I personally try to implement many of these tips on a daily basis. As someone who has dealt with anxiety and depression, I have to work extra hard at guarding my mind and keeping it extra healthy. If you’re dealing with depression or having suicidal thoughts, please seek medical help. Although, you may find some improvement from some of the things I’ve suggested, I am not a doctor and you really need be under the care of a professional.
If anybody has a tip that was not mentioned, please share in the comments. I’d love to hear it 🙂 And if you enjoyed this post click here to discover more posts from my Life 101 series!
RELATED HOW TO BE HAPPY ARTICLES
- How to Be More Productive & Get Stuff Done
- Sleep Better: 10 Tips to Help You Fall Asleep, Stay Asleep & Wake up Feeling Awesome
- How to Have More Energy & Feel Amazing