We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.” – Frederick Keonig
Why do some people have so much happiness in their lives, while others seem to never feel this incredible state of being?
The first thing that comes to my mind is biochemistry.
I certainly had times throughout my life where I was unhappy. Sometimes all I needed was a certain amino acid supplement to get rid of the blues.
Other times I just needed to get away from everything and go spend some time in nature by myself to feel happiness return to me. Life is a roller coaster of ups, downs, all arounds, flips and spins. If we’re not careful, we can get caught up in the turbulence and stress of it all.
One thing I’ve learned (over and over again), is that happiness is a choice.
No matter what is going on in our lives, we can choose to be happy in the moment. Of course this is much easier said than done! I know I’ve certainly struggled with this, as I’m sure you probably have as well at times.
So what is the answer? How do we nurture happiness?
There are a few things you can do right away to feel more happiness in your life…
1. Focus More on the Gifts in your Life and Less on what is Lacking
While there are plenty of things that you can do to be in a state of happiness, nothing is more effective than the power of focus. How often do you focus on all of the negative things that are going on in your life? On everything that you want but don’t have?
It’s difficult to experience joy while these feelings of lack and incompleteness are present.
Luckily, the solution is the antithesis. Simply focus on all of the wonderful gifts you’ve been blessed with in your life.
Do this on a daily basis to nurture happiness.
If you still aren’t feeling the amount of joy you desire, it could be that you are biochemically imbalanced.
2. Improve your Brain Chemistry
Our food supply is not nourishing us as well as it did several decades ago. Due to ignorance, convenience, or not wanting to spend a lot of money, people are eating diets that are high in calories and low in nutrients.
This has an enormous effect on the body and can lead to poor immune function, obesity, digestive issues, depression, lethargy and a multitude of other common ailments.
The natural way to enhance your brain chemistry is to improve your diet and take amino acid supplements.
Try consuming a diet that is composed mostly of organic whole foods, while eliminating processed foods and sugar.
Make sure to eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, healthy fats and proteins.
Some people who’ve had a difficult time feeling joy have taken the following mood enhancers to improve their mood naturally:
L-tryptophan, 5-HTP, DL-phenylalanine, L-tyrosine, and velvet bean.
Studies have shown these supplements to combat depression and improve feelings of well-being.
3. Spend Time in Nature
Many studies have concluded that being in contact with nature can lead to positive emotions such as happiness and tranquility. Too often we forget about the importance of nourishing our bodies and minds in the cleansing atmosphere that nature provides for us.
Going for walks in parks, forests, deserts, mountains and beaches can have immediate effects on increasing levels of happiness.
4. Laugh out Loud
Nothing bolsters mood-enhancing chemicals in the brain faster than a hearty, full body laugh.
There have been numerous studies concluding that laughter is indeed the best medicine.
It’s been shown to reduce stress, improve memory, and increase endorphins, which are the ultimate natural pain killers.
A good laugh can leave you flooded with this feel good chemical, which automatically increases your happiness and level of satisfaction with life.
5. Fall in Love
It only takes a fifth of a second for the euphoria-inducing chemicals to start acting on the brain when you are looking at that special someone.
When you’re thinking about or looking at a loved one, the brain releases a cocktail of neurotransmitters, including dopamine, adrenaline, vasopressin and oxytocin.
Have you ever noticed how happy couples that are in love appear?
Being in a loving relationship can skyrocket your bliss levels to another dimension!
Remember to hold hands, kiss passionately, make love, give cuddle hugs (huggles), and tell each other encouraging and loving words on a regular basis.
6. Eat Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate contains several chemical compounds that have a positive effect on your mood and cognitive health.
Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), the same chemical your brain creates when you feel like you’re falling in love.
PEA encourages your brain to release endorphins, so eating dark chocolate will make you feel happier.
In a study from 2007 involving over 1,000 men in their 70’s, those that preferred chocolate over other types of candy showed lower frequencies of depression and loneliness and had a more optimistic outlook on life.
7. Do What you Love for a Living
Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs
It’s important to do something we are passionate about for a living, because our work lives will then provide meaning and purpose, which are associated with psychological health and well-being.
Have you ever had a job that you were miserable at?
Are you currently working at one?
How much happier could you be if you were making a living doing something you were passionate about?
It’s never too late to follow your dreams.
All it takes is that little first step…