Read These 5 Articles and Get Happier
Every month I scan about 200 articles and posts about happiness and gratitude. Some of them contain heavy research, while others are much more fluffy. My favorites are usually those that provide useful tips or strategies about how to incorporate gratitude and happiness into your life. Here are the 5 most interesting and helpful posts I’ve come across recently:
Want to measure your level of gratefulness? This interview with Dr. Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology at UC Davis and one of the world’s leading gratitude researchers, includes a 10-question test to determine your Gratitude Quotient. Says Dr. Emmons:
I don’t think there is hard wiring. Gratitude is a choice that we can become better at if we deliberately cultivate it. It really comes down to a choice, but it also takes dedicated practice to reframe one’s thinking in this way.
Find the test and the rest of the interview:
This is a cool infographic revealing the secrets of happy couples. Lots of interesting facts including:
Married couples are unhappiest when kids are in preschool. Couples’ happiness levels increase again once the youngest kid has grown up.
Check out all the findings:
Eric Barker at Bakedesuyo writes that happier kids are more likely to turn into successful, accomplished adults, and he’s pulled together 10 simple tips for cultivating that happiness at home. The last tip is one of my favorites: Eat Dinner Together.
Sometimes all science does is validate those things our grandparents knew all along. Yes, family dinner matters. This simple tradition helps mold better kids and makes them happier too.
Read all 10 tips:
According to Suzanne Segerstrom, PhD, a professor of psychology at the University of Kentucky, optimistic people reap benefits in many areas of their lives. But what if you’re not naturally optimistic?
The trick is to act like an optimistic person, even if you aren’t feeling particularly hopeful. By being engaged and persistent, even if you don’t feel particularly positive, the benefits of optimism—like satisfaction and health—will soon follow. In fact, seeing the proverbial glass as half full can pay off in a number of unexpected ways, from improving your work experience to enhancing your relationships and protecting your mind and body.
Read all 10 reasons why strengthening your optimism is a good idea:
Last but not least, this is one of my most shared articles on Huffington Post! I put together practical ways to help families start growing an attitude of gratitude in their own households. But I also included a few reasons why gratitude is so important, including this:
Fundamentally, gratitude is about being aware of who or what makes positive aspects of our lives possible, and acknowledging that. When kids learn to think in those terms, they can be less apt to make mindless, self-centered demands. Plus, they begin to appreciate what they have rather than focusing on what they wish they had.
Get all 11 tips: