Get Happy: Part Two

ARG! It's a new day and ultimately you'd rather not have that alarm going off to begin your day. ARG! Can't we just sleep in a few extra moments? What do we have to look forward to today? Work? Conversations? Stress? ARG! What if we could take happiness into our own hands? What if we were in charge of what we do to make ourselves happy? Let's take a look at changing our mindset to propel us into being happy!

Scientific happiness advice is often corny. I’ll say that now so we can get it off the table…. But it works. And this is why you might want to say ARG when you wake up. It’s an acronym that stands for:

Anticipation
Recollection
Gratitude

I’ve written about the importance of a morning ritual and how research shows your mood in the morning affects your entire day. So start right.

Anticipation is a powerful happiness booster. It’s 2 for the price of 1: You get the good thing and you get happy in anticipation of the good thing. So think about what you’re looking forward to. Got nothing you’re looking forward to? Schedule something.

Recollecting great moments has a related effect. Memories allow us to relive the good times and kill stress.

People prone to joyful anticipation, skilled at obtaining pleasure from looking forward and imagining future happy events, are especially likely to be optimistic and to experience intense emotions. In contrast, those proficient at reminiscing about the past—looking back on happy times, rekindling joy from happy memories—are best able to buffer stress.
— The How of Happiness

Gratitude is arguably the king of happiness. The more a person is inclined to gratitude, the less likely he or she is to be depressed, anxious, lonely, envious, or neurotic. And the combo often leads to optimism. Another powerful predictor of happiness.

So, corny as it may be, wake up and say ARG! And then do a quick bit of anticipation, recollection and gratitude.

All that’s fine and dandy. But what do you do once you’re out of bed? Tune in tomorrow!

Meiko SeymourComment