10 Scientifically Proven Strategies for Happiness

10 Scientifically Proven Strategies for Happiness

From OnePowerfulWord

In the last few years, psychologists and researchers have been digging up hard data on a question previously left to philosophers: What makes us happy? Researchers like the father-son team Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener, Stanford psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky, and ethicist Stephen Post have studied people all over the world to find out how things like money, attitude, culture, memory, health, altruism, and our day-to-day habits affect our well-being. The emerging field of positive psychology is bursting with new findings that suggest your actions can have a significant effect on your happiness and satisfaction with life. Here are 10 scientifically proven strategies for getting happy.

1 Savor Everyday Moments
Pause now and then to smell a rose or watch children at play. Study participants who took time to _ã–savor_㝠ordinary events that they normally hurried through, or to think back on pleasant moments from their day, _ã–showed significant increases in happiness and reductions in depression,_㝠says psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky.

2 Avoid Comparisons
While keeping up with the Joneses is part of American culture, comparing ourselves with others can be damaging to happiness and self-esteem. Instead of comparing ourselves to others, focusing on our own personal achievement leads to greater satisfaction, according to Lyubomirsky.

3 Put Money Low on the List
People who put money high on their priority list are more at risk for depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem, according to researchers Tim Kasser and Richard Ryan. Their findings hold true across nations and cultures. _ã–The more we seek satisfactions in material goods, the less we find them there,_㝠Ryan says. _ã–The satisfaction has a short half-life_ã”it_ã_s very fleeting._㝠Money-seekers also score lower on tests of vitality and self-actualization.

4 Have Meaningful Goals
_ã–People who strive for something significant, whether it_ã_s learning a new craft or raising moral children, are far happier than those who don_ã_t have strong dreams or aspirations,_㝠say Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener. _ã–As humans, we actually require a sense of meaning to thrive._㝠Harvard_ã_s resident happiness professor, Tal Ben-Shahar, agrees, _ã–Happiness lies at the intersection between pleasure and meaning. Whether at work or at home, the goal is to engage in activities that are both personally significant and enjoyable._ã

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