The ‘How to Be Happy’ article has become a staple of newspapers, magazines, books and, increasingly, of websites. We should ‘accept reality’, or ‘take a break’, or ‘be honest with ourselves’, or ‘surround ourselves with happy people’.
These things are unlikely to do us any harm but that doesn’t stop them reading like a list of platitudes – the kind that people are always doling out but never follow themselves.
We can all create our own lists of happiness enhancing activities and argue endlessly about which is better and for whom. While that’s fun for a bit, I always want to ask: which activities have evidence to back up their claims for increasing happiness?
Psychologists have only started investigating this question relatively recently, so there’s not a very long list and it is obviously far from exhaustive, but at least there’s some research to back them up. The activities psychologists have investigated are gratitude, helping others, and firstly, visualising your best possible self.
Læs mere i artiklen, bl.a. om de videnskabelige studier, som viser vejen til et bedre humør her og nu:
1. Visualising your best possible self
2. Helping others
3. Practicing gratitude