To Do:

1. One random act of kindness

2. Meditate

3. Exercise for 20 minutes

4. Express gratitude

5. Journal positive experiences

happines-quote-with-tape

Shawn Achor delivers a riveting, hilarious TED Talk called The Happy Secret to Better Work . After using his suggestions to increase motivation, imagine my surprise to feel compelled to continue working out after 21 days!! Turns out, sticking to the challenge to increase happiness doesn’t require much effort. So let’s break it down:

1. One random act of kindness

Performing a random act of kindness does not have to cost money. Something as simple as complimenting someone, opening a door for someone or helping unload groceries in a parking lot can do wonders for an individual’s mood. Sure, we’re all familiar with the whole “paying for the person behind me in the drive thru” tactic, but opting for a free service provides deeper meaning. During the first 21 Day Challenge, relieving the burden of cooking for a friend with her new-born baby felt more significant than purchasing flowers.

2. Meditate

This was a resolution of mine at the beginning of the year. As Shawn stated, “take 2 minutes during your day and do some deep breathing, focusing on your breath going in and out. Meditating will train your mind to focus, making you feel less stressed and better able to enjoy the moment.”

3. Exercise for 20 minutes

Exercise releases endorphins, boosts confidence and energizes the spirit. Naturally, it’s easy to understand why this suggestion holds it’s weight in value.

4. Express gratitude

Relaying a message of sincere appreciation makes you feel good. But to be on the receiving end feels even better. Remind the ones you care about how much they mean to you via text, letter, phone call or even a face to face encounter. Similar to random acts of kindness, a small gratitude gesture demonstrates effort and strengthens relationships, which ultimately leads to happiness.

5. Journal positive experiences

Achor encourages listeners to detail one positive experience per day. As an overachiever, I enjoy jotting down 5 positive experiences each day in my gratitude journal. This exercise proves useful after the worse days of your life: If you can document 5 good events on a terrible day, pat yourself on the back utilizing a half-full-cup perspective.

That’s all I have today!! Since my New Years Resolutions revolve around the Happiness Project, this challenge fit in well with other related suggestions. Today will mark my second go-around with the 21 Day Challenge; anyone willing to share their own happiness advice is more than welcome to.