Page 10 - Scene Magazine 45-03 March 2020
P. 10

 Over time, these effects can add up to serious positive differences in heart health.
 writing samples for expressions of feelings like amusement, contentment, gratitude, and love. In the end, the happiest-seeming nuns lived a whopping 7-10 years longer than the least happy.
A 2011 study included nearly 4,000 English adults aged 52-79. They reported how happy, excited, and content they were multiple times in a single day. The happier people were 35 percent less likely to die over the course of about five years than their unhappier counterparts.
These two studies both measured specific positive emotions, but overall satisfaction with one’s life – another major indicator of happiness – is also linked to longevity.
With better health in mind, it’s never too late to seek out positivity. Try these ideas to get started on the journey.
1. Write down your
achievements. Train your mind to
find the positive. Write down physical achievements, personal achievements, goals you’ve met, things you have done, and places you have visited. Too often we
spend time thinking about what isn’t right with us instead of focusing on what is right.
Where might you store these nuggets of happiness? Consider purchasing a journal and write down one positive item a day. Or pick up an old fish bowl at a second hand store and write notes on slips of paper and toss them in. If you’re having an especially challenging day pull one out and read it.
2. Decide to make yourself a priority. Pay attention to those activities that have a tendency to recharge your battery, so to speak. Carve out time for yourself even if you have to plan it and align the sun, moon, and stars. You matter that much.
One way that can really impact your happiness is music. It only takes nine minutes of music to change your mood. Start making a list of songs that make you smile and store them on your smart phone or computer.
3. Fill your day with tiny things you enjoy. Sometimes happiness is in
the details. Make sure your daily details work for you. Just ask yourself: In what way can I introduce tiny things into my day (all day long) that lift my mood? I already mentioned music but maybe for you it’s reading, possibly a devotional, or even the daily funnies. For me it’s knitting or sewing, really any chance to make something new.
4. Create visuals of your awesomeness. Celebrate yours
by showcasing it visually. Post it on Facebook or Instagram. Everyone has something about themselves that they appreciate. (C’mon, admit it.)
5. Do something new. It’s easy
to get stuck in routines. You can get renewed energy from trying something you’ve never tried before. New experiences remind us that we’re alive and that life is full of surprises. Join a gym or a service club; sign up for a class to learn something new from history to cooking; or consider volunteering at an agency for a cause that is important to you.
6. Craft your day to create
a win. Instead of getting stuck in procrastination or lost in the midst of your TO DO list, determine the one thing you’d be most happy about accomplishing today and then tackle it. If you can name “your win” you’re half way there.
7. Try movement. Exercise has a positive impact on our mood. Even when you wear yourself out, you will feel better when you’re done. Get approval from your health care provider if needed.
Your actions today can have an impact on you as well as your loved ones. Your increased happiness impacts health in many ways including longevity, which means more days with children, grandchildren, loved ones, and friends.
Editor’s note: While happiness can impact our lives in many positive ways,
it can’t perform miracles. Even still, it is safe to imagine that a happier you will
be healthier, too. If you are experiencing difficulty finding happiness in life there are a variety of support groups that might help. Talk to others from friends or family to professionals if need be. The potential benefit or possible consequences to your health could be worth it.
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