50 Creative Ways To Cultivate Happiness In Your Life
For most of us, creativity flourishes when we cultivate happiness in our personal and professional lives— ultimately, when we are happy and relaxed, we are freed up to be better creatives. With that in mind, I’ve put together a list of selfless, selfish, and creative ways to cultivate happiness in your life.
50 Ways To Cultivate Happiness
1. Spend 10 minutes imagining your best possible future. Make sure to write it down.
2. Unsubscribe from one eNewsletter.
3. Spend one hour picking up trash. Cleaning our earth has a surprisingly cleansing effect on your soul. Grossed out? Get claws/tongs. These are the exact pick-up claws I have.
4. Compliment a complete stranger. A ‘I like your shoes.’ or ‘You hair looks nice.’ goes a long way.
5. Go for a walk down a busy street. Then do it again with a happy playlist playing on your headphones.
6. Spend an entire afternoon at an outdoor coffeeshop patio.
7. Write a positive Google review for a local business.
8. De-clutter your closet. Get rid of 5 things you haven’t worn in the past year.
9. Tweet an encouraging word to a stranger. Search ‘I’m lonely.’ or ‘I feel hopeless.’ to find someone in need.
10. Cook something you’ve never cooked before. I’m admittedly a sub-par cook, but anytime I use a recipe from Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F*ck I’m instantly happier. It’s like a mini adventure in my own kitchen.
11. Hug someone.
12. Make your bed first thing in the morning. Start each day with a small accomplishment.
13. Sit outside. Be still. Meditate.
14. Tell a co-worker that you appreciate them.
15. Go to a local comedy show.
16. Put your phone in ‘Airplane Mode’ and listen to an entire eBook.
17. Send a postcard to a friend.
18. Light a candle. Scandanavians practice Hygge to keep their minds at ease, this practice includes nice blanket, rich snacks, and a candle lit environment. I recently bought this Hygge Candle and it’s lasting FOREVER!
19. Write down 10 things you are thankful for. Slap that list on your refrigerator w/ a magnet.
20. Go to a local theater show.
21. Throw away the oldest sauce in your refrigerator. You know that A1 is 7 years old.
22. Visit an antique mall without buying anything.
23. Write compliments on your neighborhood sidewalk using chalk.
24. Draw whatever/whoever is in front of you using one continuous line. Allow your creative brain to take over.
25. Delete 1 app from your phone.
26. Pay for someone’s coffee at a drive through coffeeshop.
27. Text 3 friends a meme that’ll make them laugh. Start with @unemployed_professors @fuckjerry or @daquan if you need material.
28. Go for a scenic drive to someplace new.
29. Remember and dwell upon the happiest day of your life.
30. Download and use one of these happiness apps.
31. Eat your favorite snack. No guilt, just enjoy life.
32. Send your neighbor an “anonymous” note of encouragement or admiration.
33. Go to a movie all by yourself. Get lost in it.
34. Tweet ‘Thank you for your service and my freedom.’ to a soldier.
35. Recreate a photo you recently Liked on Instagram or Facebook.
36. Take a day off of work.
37. Donate $5 to any cause of your choice on Crowdrise.com.
38. Email and thank one of your childhood teachers.
39. Take a yoga class.
40. De-clutter your desk. Get rid of those notes or case studies you’re never going to use.
41. Say sorry. (You know who)
42. Pass along a book you enjoyed to a homeless person, friend or colleague.
43. Watch a stand-up comedy performance on Netflix, or YouTube. Here’s a keeper:
44. Donate blood.
45. Text an old friend, ‘I miss you! What’s new in your life?’
46. Hold the door open for a stranger. Expect nothing in return.
47. Tweet and encourage a reporter. ‘Thank you for your work and for exercising your freedom of the Press. We need you.’
48. Say a prayer for those less fortunate than you.
49. Write down and acknowledge your 8 greatest strengths. It’s not a cocky thing to do, it’s a self-awareness exercise that you need in your life (feel free to keep or dispose of the list).
50. Pay it forward. If you found this list helpful, share or email it to a friend.
There’s a little magic behind creativity. Sometimes we simply can’t predict when ideas will come, but we can manufacture an environment that is friendly to our creative brains. For me, that environment is happiness. For those of you who have the same modus operandi, I hope you use this article as a checklist and tool to catalyze the creation of something impactful.
Featured image: @aylamaagdenberg on Instagram