by Lauren Creamer
These past few months I have been on a mission to cultivate more happiness in my life. Generally, I am a positive, upbeat individual and tend to find the silver lining in all situations. I follow the mantras of “people are doing the best they can” and “you can’t change another person, but you can change your attitude.” But, I know that I can do better, and the following two sites have been helping me on my way to a greater happiness.
The Happiness Project chronicles one writer’s quest for everyday happiness over the course of an entire year. Each month Gretchen Rubin, NYC writer, tackels a new topic and sets resolutions for each subject. (Topics include boosting your energy, improving romantic relationships, strengthening parenting skills, etc.). While her focus is on the important themes in life, she improves her happiness through modification of small details. For example, one of the easiest ways to boost your energy everyday is to get eight hours of sleep. Shocking, I know. When you’re well rested, you’re a happier person. Improving romantic relationships? Stop nagging! If you want something done, sometimes it really is easier to do it yourself.
Gretchen encourages readers to create Ten Commandments of their own happiness. (Be Gretchen – one of hers; Be an Optimist Prime – one of mine). The key to her success, she says, is her resolutions chart. While it is easy to set resolutions, it is harder to hold yourself accountable. Her resolutions chart kept her focused on self-improvement each day.
Want to start your own Happiness Project? Check out her tutorial.
My second site? Happier. A site/app devoted to promoting daily happiness and positivity. Did you know that multiple studies have proven that writing down three happy things each day reduces anxiety, increases happiness, helps people make healthier choices, and gives one a better night’s sleep? Now you do!
Their mission is simple: to spread happiness. While the site explains the science behind their goal, the app puts it into action. Happier will prompt you in the morning, afternoon, and at night to write about something great that happened to you that day. Having a rough time at work? Wish you were doing something you loved? Easy fix. Write about it on the app. Share it with friends and family. Happier is basically a mobile social networking site that is all about positivity. No negative comments. No Debbie Downers. Just happiness.
The only downside at the moment at that it is not available for Android phone. For those of you with iPhones, I highly suggest you download this app! If nothing else, the confetti that rains down after you post will make you smile.
And now I leave you with this: start your own happiness project. It doesn’t have to be as elaborate as Gretchen’s or something you chronicle on your smart phone, it just needs to be an expression of the things that make you happy. Focus on the good and shake off the negative. Be happier!