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Making Happiness Happen

Ever wondered how you can become happier? Research shows that each of us can make happiness happen more often in our lives. Here's how:

Set aside thirty minutes to reflect back on the times in your life when you felt you were operating at your strongest and best. Make a list of what you believe are your top five strengths. (If you are having trouble making up a list of your strengths then go to authentichappiness.org and take the VIA-Signature Strengths Questionnaire. Once you have completed the questionnaire then print out your top five strengths.)

Next to each of your five strengths write down the times, events, people, and memories that tend to amplify those strengths for you.

During the next five days commit to displaying at least one of your strengths each day in an engaged and meaningful way. For instance, if your strength is competitiveness, challenge someone to a contest; if your strength is appreciation of beauty and excellence take a sunrise walk; if your strength is love of learning, sit in on a lunchtime lecture; if your strength is a capacity to love and be loved, tell someone you love them; if your strength is feeling gratitude, write and deliver a note of thanks and gratefulness to someone who wouldn't expect you to do so.

As you are practicing this exercise keep asking yourself, am I happier? Is my life more pleasant, engaged and meaningful when I'm focused on one of my five strengths? Let us know how making happiness happen goes for you.


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