Ever wonder why some people seem to breeze through life, and things always go their way? Well, they say life is what we make it, and according to research, there are several daily habits that if practiced over time will lead to a longer, happier, more successful life. Here are 7 habits you can practice each day in order to live your best life:
1. Begin the Day with a Specific Purpose
Have you ever gotten to the end of a day, exhausted, but have no idea what you accomplished? You may have run around all day putting out fires and jumping from one thing to the next, but feel like nothing meaningful got done. It’s important to remember that being busy does not always equate to things getting done.
Each morning, try to write down several things you want to get done that day. When you have a clear vision of what you want to accomplish, it’s easy to stay focused and to work on what’s most important first. You’ll be able to cross things off as you get them done throughout the day and realize how productive you were as well.
This goes along with Stephen Covey’s concept of ‘beginning with the end in mind.’ By remaining focused throughout your day, you will feel accomplished and thus more peaceful and happy as your day progresses.
2. Commit To 30 Minutes Of Walking Each Day
Harvard Medical School highly promotes walking for our overall health. Walking is not only great for our bodies, but also our minds. Our minds need time to clear and reset and taking time out to walk is extremely beneficial.
You will not only feel better mentally but also physically.
Walking is now being promoted as “the closest thing we have to a wonder drug,” according to Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Give yourself a bit of walking time each day to stay healthy, to refresh your mind, and to live your best life.
3. Build a Social Community
A big component of being happy and living your best life is to have social connections that uplift you and get you outside of your “self” for a bit. Whether it’s a book club, cycling group, yoga class or people you meet for coffee on a regular basis, social connections are important. According to the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, “Adults who are more socially connected are healthier and live longer than their more isolated peers.”
When we feel loved, supported and listened to, our stress levels greatly decrease, and we are able to enjoy richer and fuller lives.
4. Set Aside Quiet Time for Yourself Each Day
According to physicist and author Alan Lightman, it is important to have some quiet time each day to center yourself. Meditation has proven benefits, but even if you don’t meditate, you should spend some time each day free from technology and other distractions to help you stay grounded and in touch with your body, feelings and mind. This will help you stay calmer and more focused throughout the rest of your day.
It can also help to focus on staying in the present moment. One way to stay present is to focus on one task at a time, and to consciously slow yourself down while you do it. By doing one thing at a time, slowly and with purpose, you become more mindful and present.
5. Maintain an Attitude of Gratitude
In our quest for the next best thing, we can sometimes forget all the good stuff we already have. This can lead to frustration and unhappiness. If you stop a minute and think about how lucky you are for what you have, it can shift your entire day. A daily gratitude list is one way to stay mindful of all the good you have in your life.
In a 2003 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers found that at the end of 10 weeks, college graduates who kept a daily gratitude journal reported feeling more positive about their lives as a whole, more optimistic about the upcoming week, having fewer physical symptoms, and spending more time exercising. The change in attitude is wonderful and real, so make sure you give this one a try!
6. Take a Long Trip in a Foreign Country
Traveling can actually change your personality for the better. After studying a large group of German college students, researchers discovered that those who traveled reported improvements in the “Big Five” traits related to personality: Extraversion, Agreeableness, Openness to Experience, Conscientiousness, and Emotional Stability. Some of the students studied abroad, while others did not.
After the travel period concluded, the students were given personality inventory followups and the ones who spent time in other countries tended to demonstrate higher levels of Openness to Experience, Agreeableness and Emotional Stability when compared with the students who did not travel.
7. Practice Forgiveness
According to the American Psychological Association, forgiveness results in lower levels of depression and anxiety, along with fewer physical problems and psychiatric disorders. Forgiveness may not be an easy process, but it is well worth it.
To forgive someone, there are four steps: discovering your painful feelings related to what happened, making the decision to forgive, trying to understand things from the other person’s perspective, and developing compassion and empathy for him or her. As you work through this process with journaling or reflection, you will find yourself feeling more liberated, free and on the path towards your best life.
Once you begin to incorporate these healthy habits into your daily routine, you should find yourself happier, coping with and overcoming challenges, and enjoying more productivity each and every day.
Do you have any practices that have helped you live your best life?
Let us know in the comments.
You are Loved.