I talk a lot about being engaged with others in order to be happier, healthier, and more connected to the world. So it may seem a bit out of character to suggest a solitary activity in front of the computer to work toward the same ends. But, I came across something that just might move you into that first step of being more present, being more with others, and being more happy. It’s a website called Happify, and it’s kinda cool.
You can sign up with your Facebook account, and the first thing you’ll do is answer some questions about yourself. Nothing you haven’t seen elsewhere, but a good way to get into the mindset of thinking about your life and your attitudes and your happiness quotient – and what might be impeding that quotient. From there you are offered some suggestions, but given full choice about the direction in which you want to go. You choose a “track,” such as Stop Comparing Yourself to Others, or Be More Mindfully Grateful for What You Have. Sounds obvious, and I guess it is, but even identifying the track you want to pursue is helping you identify some things going on in your head.
From there you are given small activities to do, which get you thinking on a more granular level. You can choose to keep your work and comments private, or share with the Happify community for feedback and support from others. And you work toward goals and badges as you progress. Again this may seem silly, but achieving goals feels good, and helps keep you on track. And studies have demonstrated time and again that consistent conscious efforts to change your thinking actually can work.
What the heck. Choosing happy is the first and essential step to being happy. This seems like it could be a good way to start.