1. GIVE YOUR SWEETIE A STEALTH HUG
Tiny acts of love — a favorite meal, a mushy text-message, or an unexpected touch — make us see ourselves as kind and supportive partners. In fact, we get the bounce in self-image even if we do something nice our spouses don't notice, a Swiss study of 102 couples found.
2. INCLUDE THE BARISTA IN YOUR THANK-YOUS
In case you missed the news that reflecting on your blessings is like Miracle-Gro for your mental health, a new English study reports that keeping a daily gratitude list reduces anxiety as well as therapy does. Be specific: "To say, 'I am grateful to the coffee barista' is less effective than consciously thinking about the fact that she remembers that you like a tall latte with low-fat milk," says Robert Emmons, Ph.D., professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis.
Related: 50 Simple Acts of Kindness
3. TAKE A GRACE BREAK
Psychologists at George Mason University found that on days when people perceive their spiritual link to be stronger — whether through deep breathing, admiring the snow, or reaching out to someone — they are happier and feel better about themselves.
4. POP AN ANTI-ANXIETY PIECE OF CHOCOLATE
The trick is to pick the right bonbon: After feeding 90 lucky Dutch volunteers different types of snacks, researchers found that if you're high-strung, you'll get the best results if you nibble a milk chocolate wafer. If you fall lower on the anxiety scale, dark chocolate is a better worry chaser.
Related: 15 Simple Ways to De-Stress
5. SET A BEDTIME FOR MR. BLACKBERRY
The clearer the line you draw between the office and home, the more you'll be able to detach from work and focus on your real life, like watching Modern Family. You don't have to unplug entirely, but make rules: no checking work e-mail after 8 P.M., for example.
6. BEFRIEND YOURSELF
Self-compassionate people have taught themselves skills that help them find comfort and joy. Two key ones: They are as nice to themselves as they would be to their best friend. It's OK I haven't started Christmas shopping yet, they might think. I've been busy at work. Also, they recognize that their flubs make them part of the human race: Lots of people get behind at the holidays.
7. GET FITTER IN JUST 40 SWEATY SECONDS
For those of us who want to know how little exercise we can get away with, a new Scottish study provides the happy answer. Just 10 minutes of leisurely cycling with two 20-second bursts of hard pedaling, done three times a week, equals a quality workout. After three weeks, the formerly sedentary women in the study saw a 12% gain in aerobic capacity.
your life, inspired
Here's some tips to get to happiness going forward in your life.
Happy summer solstice, the celestial event celebrating the longest day and shortest night of the year. Here are 9 summer solstice traditions:
Where in the world do you want to go? Somewhere unique? Any of the places described here are sure to make your next world-travel adventure truly memorable.
When you stumble upon an unflattering photo of yourself, you can make excuses for it, or you can change your ways.
There's nothing more satisfying than watching your cash reproduce. We found six easy ways to grow your savings, starting with as little as $70.
Considering booking a single ticket? Read this first.
The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, were horrific, but many of the stories that have come out of that tragedy offer lasting hope and inspiration.
August 28 marks the 50 year anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech. Those who were moved by the 1963 March on Washington share all the ways that moment has inspired them over the years.
People who are happiest and most successful have one key thing in common: If they take an emotional hit, they don't ball up in the fetal position and give up.
You don’t have to wait for Friendship Day, the first Sunday in August, to let your love for your friends inspire you to show them how much you appreciate them.
Instead of visiting your usual travel destination this summer, take your family on an inspirational trip. These 20 travel spots are big on fun and culture.
Lounging, learning, drinking — that pretty much sounds like the best girls trip of our lives. Wine-os, no matter where you live, or how far you'd like to go, we've got your vacation covered.