Not only does exercising regularly have the potential to help you lose weight, but it has profoundly positive effects on your psychological health. Exercise releases dopamine, a chemical that plays a role in how you feel pleasure, into your brain. It also has the ability to help us focus, plans, and strive to improve in various aspects of our lives. Even those who don’t see a dramatic change in their physical appearance from regular exercise do tend to have better brain health.
Get more sleep.
Lack of sleep may lead to feeling extremely irritable and short-tempered. Additionally, people who are sleep-deprived have a more difficult time recalling pleasant memories, but recall unpleasant ones just fine.
Move closer to work.
Most of us don’t spend too much time focusing on it, but we spend a lot of time behind the wheel. We drive back and forth to work five days out of the week and we do it twice a day. What’s worse is we never take the time to consider the negative effects surrounding our commutes because the factors involved are always everchanging. For instance, on some days, the traffic may be light and easy-flowing. On other days, what usually takes us thirty minutes takes us an hour and fifteen minutes. Because these instances are often spread out, we never grow accustomed to them. As a result, our attitudes are negatively impacted. When we are stressed or upset about something, that can have a tendency to seep its way over into our work, affecting our job performance. The negativity begins to snowball, eventually resulting in a catastrophic event.
Spend more time with friends and family.
Material possessions may bring you happiness, but oftentimes, that happiness is fleeting, meaning that it is short-lived. Clothing goes out of style, cars age and break down and depreciate in value. It’s our relationships with friends and family that bring us true happiness and feelings of fulfillment.
Studies have shown that prolonged periods of sitting down are bad for our health. In fact, such conditions as obesity, increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels have been linked to this. Many of us work office jobs that require us to sit at our desks for long periods of time. It’s important to get up and stretch periodically to increase circulation and blood flow in the body. Additionally, being outside for at least twenty minutes when it’s warm versus being stuck inside has proven to increase happiness and overall productivity in the workplace.
Give back to your community.
You might think that spending money on material possessions such as cars, shoes, TVs, or expensive jewelry can bring you satisfaction and happiness. Temporarily, yes, this may be true. But, remember what we were saying about how our relationships with other people is what really brings us happiness? Human beings are social creatures who need human-to-human contact. It’s a necessary thing for both or mental and physical well-being. Acts of service like volunteering at a soup kitchen or participating in a clothing drive for the less fortunate or just being involved with a recreational sports league can bring us immense happiness because we are surrounded by people we care about and people who care about us.
Plan a trip. But, don’t actually take one.
Having a goal, working hard towards achieving that goal, and then finally being successful in accomplishing your goal is incredibly satisfying. Studies have shown that getting a break from work can improve our overall happiness. Have you ever gotten really excited about the prospect of going on an extended vacation? Didn’t you feel really happy about the idea of getting away from the stresses of everyday life? It’s been said that time period of time leading up to vacation creates much more happiness than the period after the vacation is over.
Reserve some time out of your day for meditation and self-reflection. Meditation can help improve focus, clarity and attention span. YouTube has several videos you can follow to practice meditating. Light some candles to create a relaxing ambiance and then get started.