Holiday Happiness Starts with You!

By Dawna Bennett, MS, RD, CDN

“To laugh often and much…. To appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

 A simple smile sends a message to the brain that a person is happy, which triggers the brain to secrete “happiness” endorphins.

Can you choose spontaneous laughter and happiness more often?

There are times when you know just what to do, and life seems to rise up and support you, and then there are times when life leaves you feeling lost and alone. On the days when it is hard to put one foot in front of the other, here is a holiday challenge for you:  cultivate happiness even when it is hard.

Give the gift of happiness to everyone you see.

There is no more powerful way to increase your own happiness than to give it away.

When times are hard and you feel lonely and disconnected, taking your focus away from yourself and putting it on someone else can help. When you realize that you have the power to create happiness for another person, you tap into the interconnectedness of us all. You start to see just how important you are and the impact you can have. If we can master the art of cultivating happiness even when everyone around us would expect us to be anything but happy, then we are truly the masters of our own destiny.

Wake up determined to be grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and give thanks as often as possible. Reach out to those around you, focusing on spreading love and cheer. Those same feelings will be returned to you.

May your New Year be happy and healthy!