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Everyone wants to be happy, but many aren’t. Even if you’re genetically disposed to be a Debbie Downer, you can still take steps to make yourself a lot happier. — by Lindsay Morris We all want to be more positive, though very few of us know how to go about bringing more pleasure into our lives. The search for happiness is an age-old quest. However, the advice many wellmeaning people offer to find happiness is downright cheesy. Did your grandma ever tell you, “Count your blessings” … “Do unto others…”? As we enter a new year and a new decade, maybe one of your main resolutions is to be happier. But perhaps you’re not even sure what would make you happy. Not to get all philosophical, but are you even sure what happiness would look like for you? One way to determine this is to ask yourself, “What’s my vision of my best possible self?” says happiness expert Sonja Lyubomirsky, a professor at the University of California at Riverside. In other words, if your life was perfect, what would it be like? That will tell you what’s important to you and what your values are. This can give you a framework to start from on your journey toward happiness. Unfortunately, as with most things in life, there is good and bad news when setting out to find your bliss. Approximately 50% of your happiness

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is determined by mostly hereditary personality traits. Half of how happy you feel is basically outside of your control. The good news is that 50% of your happiness is totally within your control. Though we all want to be more positive, very few of us know how to go about bringing more pleasure into our lives, while pushing aside our negative thoughts. Fortunately, if you follow these tips on how to be happy, you’ll hopefully find that life satisfaction could be more in reach than you think.

BEWITHOTHERS WHOMAKEYOUSMILE Studies show that we are happiest when we are around those who are also happy. There may be certain people in our lives who are perpetually grumpy that we can’t just magically remove from our lives — parents, spouse, children, siblings. However, for those relationships that you get to select, choose to be around happy people. Increasing your number of friends correlates to higher subjective well-being; doubling your number of friends is like increasing your income by 50% in terms of how happy you feel.

ACTIVELYEXPRESSYOUR GRATITUDEANDTHANKFULNESS In one study, couples who expressed gratitude in their interactions with each other experienced increased relationship connection and satisfaction the next day — both from the person expressing thankfulness and the person receiving it. In many cases, gratitude can be like a booster shot for relationships. The same is true at work. Express gratitude for an employee’s hard work, and you will both feel better about yourselves.

Profile for Preview 918

January 2020 (Vol. 34, No. 1)  

Where to Dine. What to Do. Where to Find It. When It's Happening. Preview 918 A regional magazine of national stature, Preview 918 has rema...

January 2020 (Vol. 34, No. 1)  

Where to Dine. What to Do. Where to Find It. When It's Happening. Preview 918 A regional magazine of national stature, Preview 918 has rema...