The United Nations (UN) is a
useless organization which props up dictators and progressive fascists then cries when they hurt people all at the expense of the United States is the global body dedicated to promoting peace and diplomacy across world governments. They apparently also created an international day of happiness and it’s today, March 20.
The UN has gotten a lot wrong, but even a broken clock is right twice. An international day of happiness is almost as laudable as national sandwich day. Our lives are spent in the pursuit of much: love, power, money, education, peace; but ultimately what we’re really pursuing is happiness. And boy is it elusive.
In 2006, Gallup began global polling and research on wellbeing and happiness. In that time, about 15 years, the amount of people who say they are the most unhappy (on a scale) has quadrupled. It is undeniable that there is an epidemic of sadness or unhappiness across the globe and at home in America. But not everyone is falling into this hole, at the same time as unhappiness has increased, so has happiness. Those who said they were the most happy on the scale since 2006 have more than doubled.
So what’s the secret of the happy people? The Gallup studies show that the commonality between the happiest people break down into 5 factors: fulfillment in their work and agency to earn a wage doing something they love, minimal financial stress, live in good communities, are physically well, and have friends/family/loved ones to rely on.
So the big question to ask yourself today on international happiness day is: Are you happy?
While we can’t address all of the factors which promote happiness in one day or even one week here are some ideas to help you get a little more happiness in your life:
- Find Faith
Countless peer reviewed research has found that people of faith are happier than people with none. In fact, a recent study found that 1/3rd of religious persons consider themselves to be happy whereas only 1/12th of non-religious persons consider the same. Accepting a higher power will not only bring you a higher sense of purpose but it will remind you that you are not alone and you are never alone. Being faithful also makes you more likely (according to studies) to be engaged with your peers in the community and to make overall healthier lifestyle choices which all lend to a happier existence overall. So do some soul searching and see where your faith can be better developed and your happiness will expand.Maybe it means going to church more. Maybe it means trying to make more friends of the same faith. Maybe it means more prayer and meditation. There are a lot of different ways to experience faith and the joy that comes with it.
- Be grateful
One thing that can cause unhappiness is simply failing to recognize the positives in your life. It’s easy to do with so much weighing us down. Try a gratitude journal. Do it just one day, a week, a month or even an entire year just listing one thing a day that you’re happy about or grateful for. It will help draw your attention to the things that make you smile and away from the things that bring you pain.
- Go for a walk
Depression compounds unhappiness. There is nothing inside your home or office that can fully replace natural sunlight and fresh air when it comes to the physicality of mental wellness. Plus, physical activity will promote wellness and encourage naturally occurring endorphins which promote the feeling of happiness. So spending just 30 minutes a day outside moving can make a huge difference to your outlook on life. Even if you break the 30 minutes up into 10 minute intervals, the change will be major.
- Send the text
Let someone know you care about them. If you haven’t talked to a friend in a while or you’ve been thinking about a family member or old co-worker – go ahead and ping them. It isn’t weird or rude or intrusive to just let someone know you’re thinking about them. It’ll make you feel good to remember that connection and it’ll probably make them feel good too. It’s a happiness two-for.
Caveat: this is not an excuse to contact your ex-romantic partner cause that will not bring you joy.
- Spend time with your friends
Life can be exhausting. Work can get really busy. Politics can be wild. Children have just so many activities. It’s easy to finish all your required tasks and just crawl right into bed and watch a show remaining totally dead to the world. But if that’s all you do, your network of people you know and rely on grows smaller and smaller, further isolating you from the world. Try spending at least one day this week (or one day a week going forward) in the company of people outside your household. Get coffee or breakfast before work. Invite them to church or your kids’ sports game and catch up. Go grocery shopping together. Go to Home Depot and finally get that special screw for the deck you’ve been wanting to fix. Play the video game together in each other’s company instead of just online. You don’t have to endure a night out on the town to see the people you care about.
- Do something creative
Pick a manageable creative project to start and complete. Pride of creation is a major source of happiness for people all over the world especially if work hasn’t been going super great. Write a short story. Submit an article to Free Press Fail. Paint a picture even if it’s bad. Write a poem and don’t be embarrassed about it. Maybe it’s a haiku about Donald Trump. Plant a garden. Learn an origami fold. There are a million ways to produce something. And if you keep it manageable and do it in one sitting, you get the added bonus of the feeling of accomplishment.
- Clean yourself up
If you stay at home all day whether it’s work or taking care of the home, try getting cleaned up. Go ahead and get dressed like you’re leaving the house. Make your hair and face presentable. Treat yourself with the same respect that you would treat others. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or stay nice all day (I know especially those who stay home with kids it can be challenging to stay clean). Opt for real pants instead of sweats. Style your hair on purpose instead of just running a comb through it or putting it up in a bun on top of your head. Moisturize and apply sunscreen. Look the way you imagine you should look. You will feel the joy of caring about yourself.
- Dunk on some libs
This one may not be founded in as much science but if you take to twitter to mock some of the insane leftists for being insane that can feel really good. It won’t make you happy to threaten anyone or become hostile or unhinged, but it might make you happy to share some unsolicited facts or RT Free Press Fail or Babylon Bee or any number of lib mocking outlets meant to bring you joy.