12 Ways to be Happy 2021May 17, 2021
Let's talk about happiness because I believe when you are happy, you can be productive. Happier people are more productive. When you are miserable, I would argue you cannot be the most productive version of yourself.
I've got 12 ideas for you on how you can be happier starting today. And then you can be more productive starting today. Even if it's 1%. 1% is better than zero.
Number one, smile.
Now. when I say smile, I don't mean a creepy smile. I mean a genuine smile. Back in the day when I first became an entrepreneur, I was a professional photographer. And I heard the saying, "smile with your eyes," You know your natural smile. So, smile more. Smiling doesn't just help the person you're smiling at. It also makes you feel good inside makes you feel, oh, I don't know, happy.
Number two, exercise.
I have been running at least one mile a day, every day since August 29, 2017. You don't have to run. You can ride your bike, you can swim, you can do yoga, you can go dancing. Whatever gets your heart rate elevated, breaks you out in the sweat tends to make you happier. Healthy people tend to be happier people. Exercising even a brisk walk will help you become happier and healthier.
Number three, sleep.
Neuroscientists told us we need seven to nine hours of sleep every single night. Not five of the seven nights, Sunday through Thursday, most people go to bed at a reasonable hour and they get up at a reasonable hour Monday through Friday. And the weekends, well, the train goes off the rails. Consistently seven, nine hours of sleep. Go to bed at the same time. Get up at the same time. You'll feel better and you'll be happier.
Number four, gratitude.
How thankful are you? If you're listening to this conversation, you can hear (or maybe you're reading the transcript on my website), be thankful for that. You woke up today, be thankful for that. You may have a job, a house, a spouse, children, grandchildren, the list goes on and on. Practice gratitude.
Be thankful even for the small things. A lot of people are grateful if they land a big client, or if they get so many downloads of their podcast or whatever the case may be. But be grateful for the small things. I'm grateful that I'm sitting here in my home office with the window open, the dog's not barking, and I'm able to do this podcast for you today.
Number five, give compliments, sincere from the heart compliments.
If you see someone doing something well, whether it's a server at a restaurant or someone at your doctor's office, or maybe you're just out for a brisk walk that we talked about in tip number two of exercise, and you see someone with a nice lawn, give them a compliment. The compliment is going to make them feel good and it's going to make you feel good.
Number six, take time to breathe deeply.
Now, I have the Breathe app on my Apple Watch and I'll be completely honest with you,a lot of times I just ignore it. It goes off and says, "Hey, take time to breathe" and I ignore it. But when I do take time to breathe deeply, I do feel better.
Number seven, keep a journal.
And when I say to keep a journal, I don't mean on your phone. I'm a big fan of the bullet journal. Write your gratitude. The things you're grateful for out in your journal. Things that you're thankful for, things that you're looking forward to happening. Write those out in your journal. Journaling in a notebook with a pen is so powerful.
Number eight, declutter both your physical space and your mind.
Are you worried? What are you worried about? Why are you worried about what you're worried about? A lot of people, when we talk about clutter, think about their email inboxes. They think about their work area, they think about their houses and their cars. But you also have to declutter your mind. Your mind is so important, so don't keep it cluttered with worry. Go rent the movie Frozen and sing at the top of your lungs, "Let it go" and then let it go.
Number nine, see friends.
Whether you've been vaccinated or not, whether you believe COVID is a real thing or not, go see friends. You can go see friends and not wear a mask and be distanced by six feet. Go see friends. Go hang out, go laugh, go watch a movie, there are things you can do in person with friends. Go watch a silly movie and laugh so hard you pee your pants and you cry and you snort and snot comes out of your nose! When's the last time you did that? So go see your friends.
Number ten, plan.
I'm always telling you, "tell your time where to go instead of wondering where it went." And I mean that people who plan are not stressed. Remember, we just talked about mental clutter. You get out from the burden of worry and stress by planning your time. What do you want to do tomorrow? What do you want to do next weekend? Even on the weekends, have a plan. If you just want to sit and binge-watch Netflix, at least do it consciously. Don't just do it because you got nothing else to do.
Number 11, take a break from technology.
I know. This is so hard to hear. This is like, "what did he just say? A break from technology?" Yes, a break from technology, social media, television, streaming content, video games. And I know you're probably like, "he's gotta be joking. Is this April Fool's today?" It's not April Fools.
And this is something I need to do more of. I'm being completely honest with you. If you ever listened to my show before, thank you, but I'm very transparent with you. I will tell you the things I should do that I'm not doing and one of them is taking a break from technology. Now maybe you don't take a whole weekend off. But maybe you start with two hours on Saturday, no technology. Instead, go to read a print book, or, I don't know hang out with your family. Take a break from technology, start with an hour or two, then maybe go to a half a day, then maybe go to a whole day. Look, the world is still going to be there the next day, or whenever you return to technology. Something that's been deeply in my heart is when I walk my dog, Gracie, our 45-pound beautiful lab mix, to go just with her. I bring my Apple Watch and the dog, I don't bring my iPhone, I don't bring my AirPods. I just go for a walk. And it's hard because we feel we have to be plugged into the world 24/7/365. And what I want to encourage you to do is stop and leave the technology behind and then go. It's okay, you can do this.
And tip number 12, get out into nature.
Now if you live in the city, you probably have access to a car or some other transportation. Get out in nature. You don't have to go out in the middle of the woods in the Amazon forest. But get out into nature without technology. Certainly, you can have your phone with you in case you get lost or something like that. But don't be on your phone. Don't be taken Instagram pictures when you're out in nature. Just listen to the sound. We need to get back to nature. We need to get back to experiencing a world without technology. It really matters.
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