Be happy - when you ask people, this is one of the most common words that are used along with health. Read here if you want to learn how feeling happier can lead to more energy, focus, serenity, relaxation and a more positive attitude.
Lots of people think they do have to achieve very specific things and dreams in order to be happy, For example, pursuing a job that makes a lot of money, the latest smartphone, an expensive television, branded clothes, a perfect relationship, traveling to distant countries, etc. But is that really what makes you happy in life?
You may even have all of these things and wonder: Why am I not happy when I should be? What tips can I try to get my attitude and mood in an optimistic direction? What skills help me to cope with my problems and make better decisions?
We often forget ourselves in our hectic everyday life. We do our chores, do our job, meet our friends, treat ourselves to something through consumption. Often our mental health is left out or does not think about the small things in life that really count and do not even see which mundane things make us happy and can contribute significantly to our satisfaction.
In this article we want to give you the Recognize the little things in life and give you tips on how to activate a lack of happiness. Get started today by doing more attentiveness in your life and achieve more joy in life in the future. In addition, this post is interesting for you if you want to know how being happy affects your body and your health. You will also find out what happens in your brain when you are happy and which hormones play a role.
What does be happy mean?
If you talk to different people around you about what being happy means, you will likely get many different answershow it comes to this state. You then realize that it is not that easy to find a definition to express happiness in words. After all, everyone needs something different in life to be happy.
The Meaning of being happy the feeling is different for every person is a subjective feeling. If you were to ask Aristotle, happiness is the meaning and purpose of life, the whole goal and end of human existence. In fact, people have been concerned with happiness and joie de vivre at least since ancient Greece, and these things were central questions, especially for philosophers.
Happiness is a broad term that describes the experience of positive emotions such as joy, satisfaction and well-being. What would you say - what do you personally understand by happiness? What makes you happy?
What is happiness in science?
Let's look at what happiness research is saying. Yes, right, there really is happiness research! Here, scientists from the social sciences, economics and psychology deal with happiness in an interdisciplinary manner and want to find out in which moments people feel a feeling of happiness and what is going on in the brain. Many people believe that happiness is linked to wealth, a great job, lots of money, and good health. From a psychological point of view, it is assumed that happiness is multifaceted and has different characteristics.
One tip: Money doesn't make you happier. In a study, experts found that satisfaction no longer improves above a certain value. Of course we all want to live debt-free and be able to afford what we want, but we don't need a million in our account for that.
According to the Dutch sociologist Ruut Veenhoven, they are alive happiest people in Denmark, followed by the Swiss and in third place the Icelanders. His explanation lies in a traditional democracy, the Citizens have a say, can rely on their government and the countries have material prosperity. There is also an extensive one equal rights in the sexes and also the social differences are not as wide-ranging.
Positive psychology goes even further. This young scientific discipline explores the development of positive emotions, the participation in the formation of the character and which general conditions in society must exist in order to promote our positive side.
How does happiness arise in the brain?
Ultimately, however, happiness is one biochemical experience triggered by neurotransmitters. If we want to see what happiness really looks like, we have to look at the messenger substances in the body that are associated with happiness:
So this hormone cocktail is responsible for our level of happiness. The effect of these happiness hormones has an effect on mental and physical well-being. When you understand what's going on in your brain, you can use this to your advantage.
You can stimulate your happiness hormones if you know what their tasks are and how you can ensure that these messenger substances are released in your body. So many events can trigger these neurotransmitters and you have options to intervene. How do you like to say - everyone is forge their own happiness! So you notice that believing in this saying makes sense!
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is made both in the brain and in the intestines. Once produced, it circulates in the blood and throughout the central nervous system. Serotonin is linked to digestion, blood clotting, and bone density, but its most important function in terms of what makes us happy is that Regulation of mood. Some scientists even refer to serotonin as a "happiness chemical", there higher levels of serotonin increase wellbeing, self-confidence, and belonging.
Loneliness and depression occur when serotonin is lacking, which causes many to feel unhappy in these circumstances and to have the problem of being optimistic about life. Furthermore, unhealthy attention-grabbing behavior can be a cry for what leads to a release of serotonin in humans.
People are social, which is why they enjoy it to be with other people. There is a scientific reason for this: Serotonin is released when you feel important or valued by those around you.
Thinking about significant past achievements allows the brain to relive the experience. However, our brains struggle to tell the difference between what is real and what is imaginary. Hence it produces serotonin in both cases. This is another reason why the practice of gratitude is so popular. It reminds us that we are valued and have a lot to appreciate in life. If you need a surge of serotonin on a stressful day, take a moment to reflect on past successes and victories.
You can also eat outside in the sun during your lunch break or have a coffee. If you go out in the sun for 20 minutes, you promote the production of vitamin D and serotonin.
How you deal naturally with food Increase serotonin levels you can also find out in the Academy. For example, contains dark chocolate L-Tryptophanwhich is a precursor to serotonin. You probably know the effect as moodwhen you let a piece of chocolate melt on your tongue.
dopamine is another neurotransmitter that is made in the brain and distributed in various ways to affect body functions such as heart rate, blood vessel and kidney function, nausea, vomiting, and even pain.
Dopamine may be best known for its role as a happiness hormone. Your body uses dopamine as a Part of the reward system free, for example after the Sex, a good meal or when you have achieved a goal. In this way, dopamine plays a role in how quickly, efficiently, and with what focus you get things done. Your body knows that when your mind reaches a goal, it will flood the body with dopamine, which will make you feel happy and fulfilled.
This doesn't just apply to achieving big goals. Even when you do small tasks, your dopamine levels go up. The happiness of dopamine feels invigorating and energizing. People with low dopamine levels can experience depression or other mood disorders and have trouble staying focused. You lose focus faster.
Because dopamine is too the hormone that motivates us to take action to achieve goals, wants and needs. Procrastination, self-doubt, and a lack of enthusiasm can be linked to low dopamine levels.
In a study of rats, researchers found that the rats with low dopamine levels always opted for a simpler option and less food than those with higher dopamine levels. You worked harder to get twice the amount of food.
Endorphins are called Response to pain and stress released. They help relieve anxiety and depression. Similar to morphine Endorphins act as analgesics and sedatives, reducing our perception of pain.
Along with regular exercise, one of the easiest ways to help release endorphins is laughing. Even the expectation of laughter, e.g. B. If you plan to go to a comedy show, it increases the endorphin level.
The smell of vanilla and lavender has also been linked to the production of endorphins. Studies have also shown that dark chocolate and spicy foods can trigger the brain to release endorphins.
Oxytocin creates intimacy, trust and builds healthy relationships. It is released by men and women during orgasm and by mothers during childbirth and breastfeeding. When animals reject their offspring, it has something to do with blocking the release of oxytocin. Oxytocin is important to create strong and improved bonds, i.e. in partnerships and friendships.
Often as Cuddle hormone An easy way to keep your oxytocin secreted is by hugging someone. Interpersonal contact not only increases the level of oxytocin, but also reduces stress and improves the immune system. So instead of just shaking hands with your friends, just give them a hug a few times. Furthermore, the oxytocin level can also rise when you receive a gift.
Does being happy make you healthy?
Research shows that not only do people feel better when they are happy, but that that emotion can also bring many health benefits.
- promotes a healthy lifestyle
- strengthens the immune system
- can reduce stress
- protects your heart
- relieves pain
Being happy promotes a healthy lifestyle
Did you know that happy people are more likely to eat healthily? One study found that 47% of the study participants eat more fruits and vegetables than the less well-disposed people. 1 As you probably know, these foods are very healthy and have been linked to a lower risk of developing diabetes, having a stroke or heart disease.2, 3, 4
Furthermore, 10% of people were down 33% more physically active as the others. Regular exercise helps you build strong bones, increase your energy level, and lower your body fat and blood pressure.5,6, 7
You can continue to be happy Improve sleeping habitswhat leads to you More concentrated and productive in everyday life are. It also has a positive effect on your training performance.8, 9, 10 One study found that sleep disorders were 47% higher in people who had lower levels of positive well-being.11 More studies are needed to confirm the link.
Being happy strengthens the immune system
Those who are constantly sick will hardly be satisfied with it. According to research, living a happy life can help improve your Strengthen the immune system12 and you have a reduced risk of catching colds, for example. 13 Happier people were three times less likely to have a cold. 14
A study with 81 students who received a vaccine against hepatitis B is also interesting. The happier students were almost twice as likely to have high antibody responses, which is a sign of a strong immune system.15
Being happy can relieve stress
A lot of stress causes your cortisol level to rise. Cortisol is a hormone that contributes to negative effects such as insomnia, weight gain, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Being happy can help reduce stress.16, 17 Studies have shown that happy people tend to have lower cortisol levels.18, 19, 20
Being happy protects your heart
Heart disease is one of the world's largest causes of death. If you are happy, you can reduce the risk of getting sick. It also protects your heart by lowering your blood pressure.21, 22
If you already have heart disease, it is worth working on your happiness. A systematic review of 30 studies found that greater positive well-being in adults with heart disease reduced the risk of death by 11%. However, you should also note that healthy behavior could lead to this, such as physical activity and healthy eating habits.23
Further qualitative research is necessary in this context. On the other hand, a study that lasted 12 years found that there is no connection between positive well-being and the risk of heart disease.24
Being happy relieves pain
If you are happy, that can be you Influence on your pain perception to have. For example, arthritis is a condition in which the joints are inflamed, which makes the joints stiff and painful. Many studies have shown that greater wellbeing can reduce pain and improve physical functioning.25, 26, 27
Experts suggest that happier people have a lower score for pain because their positive emotions help broaden their perspective, which leads to new thoughts and ideas being stimulated. This could help them with that Develop coping strategies that reduce the perception of pain.28
Creating feelings of happiness: how do I become happy?
There are many ways to create feelings of happiness and increase your well-being. But can you really train to be happy? Yes! What have you been doing so far for things that increase your satisfaction?
Whoever wants to be happy often has to Courage to change have - this is the first important step. If you have been dissatisfied with yourself and your life for a while, you will not suddenly be the happiest person on earth the next day, and certainly not in the long term.
If you want to be happy in the long term and don't want to let stressful phases and low blows get in your way, you can do something about it. You don't have to implement every tip immediately, work your way into your moments of happiness piece by piece in life. Remember that you should enjoy every exercise that you ultimately do.
This is how you can practice being happy:
- Exercise gratitude
- Do sports and exercise
Sure, when you're not feeling well at the moment, you may find it difficult to look positive. But that too is a matter of practice. Over time, you can have a positive impact on yourself and become happier by focusing on the things for which you are grateful. Also think about the little things that make you happy, for example a nice chat with the neighbor, a smile that a stranger gave you or that you helped someone. At the end of the day you will end the evening with a smile more and more often.29
Every day, write down three things that you will be grateful for at the end of the day.
Research shows, for example, that the frequency of small, positive experiences has a greater impact on our satisfaction with life than some very special large success events. People who are grateful feel better about themselves and their lives and also show higher levels of happiness.
Expressing gratitude helps you to feel good - what yours Improves self-esteem. Practicing gratitude can too permanent changes in the brain effect. People who consciously practice gratitude show greater neural sensitivity in the prefrontal cortex, a region of the brain associated with learning, rational thinking, and decision-making.
When gratitude is authentically practiced in our lives, we experience more relaxation, serenity and feeling connected to the world around us. If you are practiced in it after a certain time, you will not even think about it and notice the positive effects on your view of life.
Do sports and exercise
Sport and especially cardio training like jogging are among the most effective exercises for creating feelings of happiness. But even if you generally integrate more exercise into your everyday life, it has an effect positive on your mood .30
Sport helps you better deal with stress. During physical activity, messenger substances are released that are important for coping with stress - namely norepinephrine. Also be Endorphins released - do you know that feeling of satisfaction after exercising?
30 minutes of exercise a week alone can be enough to cover your general Increase wellbeing. Sport also promotes yours Self-confidence, You feel more comfortable and secure in your skin.
Regular meditation can increase your happiness by helping you Reduce stress, improve your sleep, and keep your mind calm. Over time you will see so much more calmly.31
In meditation, you try to focus on the here and now. It doesn't matter what happened yesterday and it doesn't matter what happens in the future, what appointments are coming up, what steps you have to do next. When you meditate, you learn to free yourself from all this stress that surrounds you every day and to be closer to you.
If you are practiced in meditation, you will then also increase in everyday life focus on the present moment, be more relaxed and be more mindful in life. Mindfulness is that State of active, open and conscious awareness of the present. And sometimes the smallest and simplest things are that make life easier.
Letting go can be so good: Try to get out of your "thinking mode" more often, think less and enjoy more zest for life. Go with people in your life and look for things and situations that really fulfill you in your life.
After all, everyone has a different sense of happiness and people can feel joy in a wide variety of things. Many people who are unhappy or dissatisfied with their circumstances are often very worried, worried or fearful. If you develop strategies for yourself, however, you can better classify your emotions, deal better with negative situations and mistakes, become more relaxed and come out of them more strongly after challenges and have more energy in life.
For example, exercising or being creative can be a good step to relieve stress.
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