15 Ways to Be Happy

I've done all the typical resolutions. I've done the "lose weight" resolution pretty much every year. I've done the "eat well", "exercise", "get organized", "manage your time better", "stress less", and "be the best you can be" resolutions for each new year. Enough!

These aren't bad resolutions, but I'm planning something a bit different.

My plan? 
I want to be happy. 
Not only me, but I want to bring others along with me!

Do you want to be happy?  Do you want your students to be happy? Here are some researched strategies!

Honestly, it's quite a challenge for teachers (as well as students) to be happy these days. Our days seem to evolve around test scores, and never about the true needs of the children, which can be heart breaking to those of us who have always wanted the best for children. But I believe it can be done. (Did I mention that I also believe it will get better? I'll never stop believing that!)

As many of you know, I do a lot of reading about the brain and how children learn. Have I mentioned I also have read a lot about what makes people happy?  There's a lot of research out there!

Here are some scientifically researched ways to be happy:

Show Kindness - Evidence shows we can feel happier simply by showing a kindness to others. Try giving a compliment to someone and see how that makes you feel!

Practice Gratitude - I've read a great deal of research on the benefits of gratitude. Take time to think about your blessings.

Cooperate, Don't Compete - How can you help someone else have success? We are NOT in competition with each other!

Happiness is Contagious - If you are happy, it helps those around you to be happy!

Be Positive - Keep a positive mindset. Believe you can be happy!

Know Your Strengths -  Everyone is good at some things. What are your strengths?

Get Enough Sleep - This seems pretty obvious, but if you don't get enough sleep, you'll be miserable in many ways. Although it's not always in our control, do your best to get enough sleep. If necessary, find time for a nap!

Listen to Music - There have been many studies connecting music with our moods. I'm sure you can name a few songs that put you in a good mood immediately when you hear them. 

Have Something to Look Forward To - I've always noticed that I'm in a better mood if I have something I'm looking forward to. It might be a trip, a get together, or even a TV show! Now there's scientific research to back this up!

Laugh - There are plenty of benefits to laughter (See THIS post!) Be sure to take plenty of opportunities to laugh each day!

Meditate -  This can mean many things to many people. Whether it means praying, quiet time, time to reflect, or just "down time", it is needed. With our very busy lives, it's more needed than ever!

Exercise - I'm sure you know all about how exercise produces endorphins. These are the "happy chemicals" that make you feel good. Seriously, don't you feel better after a workout? 

Reduce Stress - Many of the ideas listed in this post will help you reduce stress. We can't make it go away, but we can do our best to control the stress we have. Here are several ways: deep breathing, soft music, meditation, yoga, aromatherapy, laughter, exercise, chewing gum, take a nap, hugging. kissing, or taking part in an outlet like painting, dancing, or writing.

Be With Good People - The companionship of true friends or family can't be replaced. Spend time daily enjoying the company of good people.

Spend Time with An Animal - No one can argue about the joy of a loving animal! Puppies are even used in hospitals for therapy!

These are just a few ways to help yourself (or others) be happy. 

Here's what I made to help my students be happy: 


  1. What a wonderful list! Great things to remember.
    Also, thank you for the freebie!

    Happy 2016!

    Miss Galvin Learns

  2. What a great freebie! I love this list, I always forget the chewing gum one, I had a pack in my desk last year and it really helped when I remembered. I'll have to make sure I do this again :)

    Stars and Wishes

  3. What a fantastic freebie! You should offer it to all the adults you know first!


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