This Simple Habit May Separate the Happy From the Unhappy

Katie Sweeney

Many people believe that changing the way you think is the first step toward changing your life. It might also be the key to finding greater happiness. Mind Body Green recently reported on a Harvard study that found that researchers “have uncovered compelling evidence that a wandering mind is an unhappy mind. We’re happiest when thought and action are aligned.” This means that if you’re folding laundry and thinking about folding laundry, you'll be happier than if you’re folding laundry while thinking about a beach getaway.

The researchers developed a smartphone app that samples people’s ongoing thoughts and feelings. They found “that people are thinking about what is not happening almost as often as they are thinking about what is and found that doing so [thinking about what is not happening] typically makes them unhappy.” How can you control your thoughts in an attempt to be happier? Make the decision to change your thought patterns, focus on what is happening in that moment, try not to fall into autopilot mode, and employ mindfulness.

Focus more on happiness by reading The Happiness Project.

What makes you happiest?

Opening image: Jenna Alcala

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