Discover the 7 Simple Rules For A Happier Life

Every person wants to wake up each morning feeling cheerful and content, to enjoy fulfilling relationships, and to have a sense of meaning and purpose in life. We can achieve greater life satisfaction and well-being with small lifestyle changes and mindset shifts even though happiness may feel out of reach for many. These seven simple, scientifically-backed rules will help you discover more joy, gratitude, and bliss in your life by following them every day.

The positive psychology field has found strong links between fostering social connections, practicing gratitude, participating in meaningful activities, and actively taking care of oneself. As humans have known for centuries, elements such as strong relationships, a sense of purpose, mindfully enjoying the present moment, and pursuing passions all contribute to emotional wellness and life satisfaction.

Rule 1: Practice Gratitude

Understanding Gratitude

Gratitude is about focusing on the blessings in your life, both the simple joys and the significant gifts that shape your life. A positive attitude, rather than ruminating about the negatives, enhances mood, improves sleep, and strengthens friendships.

When you begin each morning by thinking of three specific things you’re grateful for-a comfortable bed, a caring co-worker, and a favorite lunch spot nearby-you’re more likely to appreciate the day ahead.

Daily Gratitude Practices

Write down a person, situation, memory, or simple pleasure from the day each night in a gratitude journal.

Take turns naming something you’re grateful for with a friend or family member at dinner time, even simple pleasures like a sunny day or a favorite song.

Rule 2: Foster Positive Relationships

The Role Of Relationships In Happiness

Our lives have meaning and purpose because of the connections we have with others. In addition to providing emotional stability and support, deeper relationships also provide joy and a sense that someone “has your back” through life’s ups and downs.

According to research, face-to-face social interaction releases dopamine, reducing stress and boosting mood. Taylor Swift credits her squad for grounding her in her busy schedule.

Building And Maintaining Positive Relationships

Spend time and effort showing up emotionally for those you care about. Reach out to friends through video calls, join them at the gym, and become a trusted listener.

Tell them how much you appreciate and support them by mentioning their talents and strengths, such as perseverance, humor, or loyalty.

Rule 3: Engage In Regular Physical Activity

Benefits Of Physical Activity

Exercise has been well-established to improve mental health in addition to improving physical health. Multiple studies have shown that following aerobic exercise routines just a few times a week can reduce depression and anxiety risk. In the brain, exercise releases serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins, the “feel good” neurotransmitters.

Scott, an avid runner, found that maintaining a regular morning run helped manage his mild seasonal depression. The mood boost and sense of accomplishment carried him through gloomy winter days.

Incorporating Exercise Into Daily Life

Explore dance classes, tennis matches, and biking trails. Select physical activities that you enjoy, so it feels sustainable rather than a chore.

Exercise regularly throughout the week. Consistency is essential, even when motivation is low. Remind yourself of the benefits.

Rule 4: Live In The Moment

Understanding Mindfulness

A mindfulness practice involves paying attention nonjudgmentally to thoughts, feelings, and sensations as they unfold in the present moment. In addition to improving emotional regulation and reducing harmful stress, mindfulness has a positive impact on physical processes such as inflammation and blood pressure.

Trying to balance work, family dinners, and emails could frustrate a busy entrepreneur. The deep breathing exercises she did before bed helped her ground herself in the present rather than overwhelm her mind with the day’s tasks.

Practical Mindfulness Techniques

Relax your nervous system with breathing exercises. Close your eyes, clear your mind, and slowly inhale for four counts, hold for four counts, and exhale for four counts.

Try focusing solely on your task when cooking dinner for the kids or sending emails for an hour.

Rule 5: Pursue Your Passions

Finding What You Love

Passions and hobbies give life great meaning and purpose when they are explored and actively pursued. They are intrinsically motivating activities that are connected to our core interests and values. Passion projects are uniquely beneficial to happiness and self-esteem because they spark creativity, provide a sense of challenge, and allow you to apply strengths.

Despite doubts about her ability to balance her commitments, one corporate accountant dreamed of opening a bakery one day. It sparked her creativity in her office job when she saw her friends’ delight when she baked elaborate cakes for special occasions. To meet others who shared her interest, she joined a baking club to develop a sense of community.

Making Time For What Matters

Consistency enables progress. Schedule meaningful activities in your calendar the same way you schedule dentist appointments.

If you can’t commit to a three-hour painting class, spend 15 minutes sketching or strumming a guitar.

Rule 6: Give Back To Others

Giving brings happiness

In addition to providing a sense of purpose and meaning, giving back promotes greater life satisfaction, lower anxiety, and lower depression rates. In addition to awakening empathy, compassion, and self-confidence, volunteering to support a cause dramatically boosts mood by practicing small acts of kindness in daily interactions.

In one example, empty nesters Ralph and Alice became mentors for at-risk teens aging out of foster care. They relished nurturing genuine connections with youth who benefitted profoundly from their guidance in navigating school, work, and apartment applications. Positive energy flowed both ways.

Ways To Give Back

Tutor students in need, serve meals to people experiencing homelessness, and offer budgeting expertise at a women’s center.

Get into the habit of doing Random Acts of Kindness: Help the mom juggle packages and her toddler at the market, let your colleague go first in line for coffee, and pick up litter on your walk around the neighborhood.

Rule 7: Adopt A Growth Mindset

The Power Of A Positive Attitude

Our mindset and inner narrative influence how we respond to challenges, setbacks, and criticism. A “fixed mindset” assumes capabilities are static and avoids risk or effort to protect self-image. In a “growth mindset,” abilities are viewed as developing over time with persistence. It motivates learning over quick wins.

A talented runner with a national potential, for example, felt crushed after a poor marathon performance. If he had been set on disappointment, he might have quit the team, unwilling to risk another bad performance. Instead, he returned the next week to adjust training strategies, qualifying for regionals with a new personal best.


Our choices in life each day influence how we choose to live our lives most sustainably. It comes from mindfully embracing the present, purposefully engaging in meaningful pursuits, graciously supporting others’ well-being as much as your own, and flexibly growing stronger through life’s ups and downs.

Over the next few months, strive to introduce a new rule each week. Maintain a positive and forward-thinking mindset. With consistent and incremental progress, you will begin to see improvements in your attitude, connections with others, and overall health. An enjoyable and satisfying existence is on the horizon. Genuine happiness occurs when we live each moment, discussion, and task with intention that aligns with our core passions and principles. It flourishes from embracing a growth-oriented mentality that turns challenges into opportunities while adding more joy and humor to our life experiences.

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