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Ten things happy people do differently

1. Have a strong sense of community

They are connected with family, friends and the local community. Strong connections to wider areas of life can provide a shield to depression.

2. Use their strengths regularly

When you use what you’re good at more often, you’ll perform better, and be more motivated.

3. Are thankful.

There’s a difference between saying thanks and being thankful. Gratitude helps people cope with stress and anxiety, builds self-worth, and heightens positive emotions.

4. Feel optimistic

Optimism is learned as a habit over time. It helps you understand what is in and out of your own control.

5. Understand it is good to do good for others

Being kind and helpful to others creates something called volunteer’s high. The act of kindness is just as good for the person performing the act as it is for the recipient.

6. Not materialistic

Author, James Wallman calls it stuffocation. All our stuff is suffocating us. No amount of stuff will ever make us happier. We habituate, desire more, and continue to never be satisfied. I think of it like this: is any television ‘actually’ big enough?

7. Know how to let go

Bad stuff still happens to happier people. They have setbacks, failures and tragedies. They acknowledge how they feel – but have built a foundational belief of knowing one day they will start to feel better. They don’t ignore their past hurt, they change their relationship with it.

8. They act happy

Sounds ridiculous. But happy people act in all the ways you expect happy people to act. They smile, they are engaged, have energy, enthusiasm and they are positive. The only way to act like this more often is to choose to act like this more often.

9. Have a sense of belonging

This might be religion or a shared community. When you feel part of something of bigger it helps you have greater purpose.

10. They have momentum

Thinking about doing something and actually doing something are two different things. Happier people have values they care about, things they stand for and against, outcomes they want to achieve – and they are acting on all of these aspects of their life.

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