Studies in Positive Psychology have shown that developing daily habits of positivity can increase happiness and lead to a more positivity life. Living a life of positivity doesn’t just happen by chance. It takes a conscious daily effort but the benefits are well worth it. Everyone has challenges and obstacles that threaten happiness and wellbeing. That’s just the reality of life. Establishing a few simple daily positivity habits can increase resilience, optimism and happiness, despite any difficulties.
When creating your positivity plan, be sure to keep it simple and work on one goal per week. Once you’ve mastered the first goal, you can add in another. Be sure to “celebrate” and congratulate yourself, every time you accomplish your daily positivity goal. Doing so will increase the likelihood that you will continue to progress in your positivity plan. Here are 8 possible positivity habits you might consider:
1. Planned Daily Acts of Kindness
The best way to enjoy a good day is to make someone else’s day! This can be done through an anonymous service for someone you know or even a total stranger. Studies show that performing daily acts of kindness and/or service not only make others happy, but they can also add to the happiness of the giver.
2. Acknowledge Then Reframe Challenges
When facing a challenge, acknowledge it (don’t “sweep it under the rug”) then reframe it and focus on a positive aspect of the situation. As the old saying goes, “Look for the silver lining.” For example, you might say, “Even though I felt nervous during my speech, at least I had the courage to try!” or “Even though I didn’t get all of my work done today, at least I completed the most important things on my to-do list.”
3. Write 3 Gratitudes Daily
The act of writing down three gratitudes daily has been proven to increase optimism because it helps your mind focus on what’s good and what’s right in your life. Recognizing that you do have positive things in your life – things to be thankful for today – can give you a renewed hope and optimism that tomorrow will also bring new blessings. You can write about three positive moments from your day or write about three things (or three people) in your life that make you happy.
4. Be your own BFF
Being your own “best friend forever” means practicing self-compassion. Treat yourself with respect and patience and remember to use words of loving kindness: “Even though I made a big mistake, I still love and accept myself. I can always try to do better next time.”
5. Good Humor
Make time to enjoy good humor daily. This can be done through having a good laugh with a friend or by watching a funny video (there’s plenty of them on YouTube these days). Listening to happy music can also brighten your mood. Dancing to that music can increase your enjoyment even more. Did I mention dark chocolate? That’s another great mood booster to add into the mix.
6. Fresh Air, Sunshine and Exercise
Get outside to enjoy fresh air, exercise and sunshine at least once a day. Thirty minutes per day is optimal but if that’s not possible, even 10 minutes can provide a sense of renewal and increase your feelings of positivity. Here’s how it works: exercise releases endorphins and sunshine gives you much needed vitamin D3. Both help with feelings of mental and physical wellbeing.
7. Relaxation, Meditation, and/or Deep Breathing
Daily stressors take a toll on the different systems of our bodies. It’s important to take time during your busy day to relax, meditate, and/or do deep breathing exercises. Even just 15 minutes of relaxation and deep breathing can provide a much needed “reboot” to your state of mental and physical wellbeing.
8. Mindfully Savor and Celebrate the Best Part of the Day
When you get toward the end of the day, acknowledge and celebrate your favorite part of the day. Perhaps you can discuss it with someone or write about it in a journal. In other words, mentally relive the happiest part of your day and savor that memory. Doing so can help you to mindfully focus on positivity throughout your entire day. From the beginning, your mind will scan the day (in real time) searching for the best part of the day. You may even find that you end up celebrating several “best parts of the day.”
Have fun and good luck with your new plan of positivity! You can’t always choose what happens in life. However, choosing to follow these 8 great daily habits of positivity (or any other habits of happiness) can improve your enjoyment of it and therefore lead to a more positivity life!