Being happy is one of most people's life goals, but it's easy to get stuck in a rut and forget to take time out to look after yourself. So, we've got 60 simple ways that will help you be a happy person and most of them are free too!
Being happy is most likely to be really important to you, but so often it gets pushed to the bottom of our list of priorities. So, we’ve got 60 simple ideas that’ll help you be the happy person you’ve always wanted to be – and the best part is, most of them are free!
We’ll admit that we often forget to say ‘I love you’ to the people who we care about most and saying it actually does make us feel happy. So, promise yourself that you’ll say ‘I love you’ at least once a day and see how you feel!
And if you’re feeling extra nice, bake that special someone these cute ‘I love you’ biscuits too.
If your aches and pains are getting you down, then treat yourself to a massage. It will make all the difference and you’ll wonder why you waited so long to head down to your local salon.
If you’re short on cash, then buy a nice massage oil and ask your other half to do it instead!
Writing down your worries might sound like a silly idea, but getting these off your chest and on to paper will really make a difference to how you feel. Always carry a notepad with you so whether you wake up in the middle of the night, panicking or you worry yourself sick on the bus, you’ll be able to write them down. You don’t have to share the list, but having them written down will feel like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders.
Do our quiz to find out your stress type.
Whether you buy a new dress, book or chocolate brownie – treat yourself! We all deserve to be spoilt once in a while and buying yourself something that you really want will definitely lift your mood. So head down to the shops and indulge in a little gift just for you.
It’s a well known fact that having a healthy sex life is likely to increase your happiness, but now we know the best time to have sex is in the morning. Having sex releases the happy hormone ‘oxytocin’ and according to new research morning sex leaves you feeling close and bonded to your other half for the rest of the day. So set your alarm a bit earlier from now on!
It’s also a great workout – try our 7 nights of sex guide that will help you lose weight!
Instead of splurging on a expensive spa treatment for your ‘me’ time, turn your bathroom into your very own spa! It’ll cost you pennies and have you feeling great in no time.
Spending some quality time with your partner is key to your happiness – it’s not about quantity of time together, but more about the quality. So, put aside an evening without the kids, just for you two. You don’t even have to spend any money, just cooking and eating your dinner together is a good start.
Keep your brain active by promising yourself you’ll learn something new every day! You can impress your friends and family with your new facts as well.
Getting all the right vitamins and minerals is key to being a healthy and happy person and making sure you get enough sunlight is essential for your Vitamin D intake. Book that holiday you’ve been meaning to and come back bronzed, relaxed and content!
Check out our holiday essentials.
Studies have proven that adults need between 7.5 and 9 hours sleep a night to be able to function properly. But it’s not as simple as that, for most of us. If you have trouble sleeping then take our sleep test, it could help you work out why you’re having trouble getting your 40 winks.
Turning your phone off at night is a great way to feeling more relaxed and happy. You won’t get woken up by any text messages and you’ll get a much better quality sleep. Plus, you’ll be saving battery life too!
If you use your phone for your morning alarm, then just switch it to flight mode – your alarm will still go off.
We wouldn’t recommend this if you’re terrified of heights, but, jumping out of a plane sounds pretty exciting to us! And what better thrill is there?
Whether it’s dancing, rock climbing, swimming or hockey, taking up a new hobby is a great way to get active, meet new people and have a good time. If you’ve been thinking of joining a class for ages then do it, today!
Getting down the gym will make you feel great for loads of reasons. Exercise releases endorphins that make you feel happy, you’ll feel really energetic from the physical activity (really!) and you’ll deserve that chocolate dessert after your workout!
If you’re thinking of going on a diet, give the goodtoknow diet club a go. We’ve also got a great free tool for you to use that’ll set your achievable aims in your weight loss programme.
Want to be feel at-ease with your life? Forgive! Whether it’s forgiving an ex-lover for the hurt they caused or a friend for losing contact, letting go of your anger will lift a weight off your shoulders that you probably didn’t even realise was there.
After a hard day, one thing to look forward to is sitting down with a nice glass of wine. As long as you’re staying within your daily recommended alcohol allowance, which is 2-3 units for women, then you shouldn’t be at risk. Also a new study has found that having a glass of red wine a day, could actually prevent you from putting weight on!
See how many calories are in your favourite alcoholic drinks.
Exercise is key to being healthy and happy and swimming is a great way to get fit, as it puts very little strain on your joints. Head down to the pool for a few lengths and when you’re finished exercising, pop in the jacuzzi or sauna – well it would be rude not to!
Receiving a hand-written letter has to be one of life’s greatest pleasures. Knowing that someone has taken the time to sit down with a pen and paper to write to you makes you feel great. So write a letter to one of your nearest and dearest – we bet they’ll appreciate it!
No-one can deny that having your favourite tune on full blast, lifts your mood. And listening to music releases dopamine, a feel-good chemical, so there’s another excuse to turn the CD player up!
Put your headphones in and crank up the volume!
Do something that will make someone else happy. What greater way to put you in a good mood, than to know that you’ve brightened someone’s day. It only has to be a little gesture like making your other half a cup of tea in the morning, but you’ll feel all the better for it.
There’s a lot to be said for deciding that you’re going to be a happy person. Having a positive mental attitude (PMA) could actually really lift your mood!
It’s recommended we drink 1.5 litres of water a day and if we don’t get enough water then that’s when we become dehydrated (and are more likely to suffer from headaches!). The body needs water to get rid of bad toxins and drinking enough water can actually speed up your metabolism. Pass us a glass, please!
OK, maybe never
arguing is a bit optimistic but deciding that you’re not going to argue over petty things and sticking to it (as much as possible) will make you calmer and your relationship happier.
If your wardrobe is jam-packed with old clothes that either don’t fit any more, or you no longer like, then take them to your local charity shop! Your wardrobe will be de-cluttered and it’s a great way to give to charity, especially if you’re strapped for cash.
If you’re feeling down, take a look at some of your old text messages. It’ll remind you of all the good times you’ve had and all the people that love you dearly and will go some way to putting a smile back on your face.
It’s great to challenge yourself and when you achieve something you never thought you would, you’ll get that warm, happy feeling. Get started today!
Personal touches are the most thoughtful, so instead of heading to the shops to buy someone a gift, why not make your own?
They say everyone has a novel in them, so why not put pen to paper and start writing yours! It’s a great way to escape into another world for a few hours and you never know, you might even make some money from it!
A good dose of laughter can do wonders to give you that warm, happy buzz. So whether it’s watching your favourite TV show, or meeting up with friends, do something that’s going to make you laugh until your belly hurts (plus it’ll do wonders for your tummy muscles).
Other health benefits to laughing.
If you’re not feeling as happy in your relationship as you once did, then it’s likely your general mood is being affected. Put the spark back in your relationship with our fab advice. From 10 love-life commandments to tips on how to be a happy couple and 40 sex positions you’ve got to try – we’ve got loads of great ideas that’ll help you feel more content.
If you’ve got a free Sunday afternoon and it’s rainy outside, then relax with all the family and watch a film together. You can take it in turns each week to pick a film to watch, so there are no arguments.
And, treat yourself to some popcorn! Did you know, new research has shown that popcorn may have more anti-oxidants in it than fruit and veg? Good news, if you ask us!
So this one might not be for everyone but, research has shown that meditation can make you feel calmer, more at ease and generally happier. And the great thing about it is it’s not a short-term buzz – meditation could actually make you a happier person in the long run. Why not give it a try?
Making sure you take enough time away from work is really important. It’s so easy to save all your holiday up until the last few months of the year, but spreading it across the whole year will actually be better for you. Plan trips with friends, your whole family and your other half – and enjoy yourself!
If you’re anything like us, then your life will be pretty busy! And, it’s so easy to not spend as much time with your elderly relatives as you’d like. So, promise yourself that you’ll go and see your Auntie or Nan at least once a month and stick to it. They’ll love seeing you and it’ll feel great knowing you brightened their day.
Making sure you get all the right foods in your diet is essential to general health and wellbeing. We’re not saying don’t have a chocolate treat every now and then, but it’s all about balance and making sure you eat well is key to feeling and looking great.
Join goodtoknow’s diet club for all the support and help you’ll need? We’ve got a great free toolthat will tell you your BMI and set you achievable goals.
New research has shown that the act of simply trying to break a bad habit can really lift your mood – even if you’re only successful for a day! So if smoking is your vice, or always eating the last biscuit, try and stop it and chances are you’ll feel happier.
When you’re feeling blue, it can be hard to motivate yourself to cook and eat well. But feeling healthy on the inside will make you feel so much better in the long run. Getting your 5-a-day has loads of health benefits and we’ve got some quick tips that’ll make sure you get yours every day.
Struggle getting the kids to eat their greens? Try these tricks!
We love a good book and there’s nothing better than finding the time to sit down and really get into your latest novel. Whether you read in the bath, just before bed or while the kids have their afternoon nap, make sure you set aside this time for yourself.
Join in with goodtoknow’s Book Club – there’s chances for you to win books and you’ll get to meet loads of other mums.
Get up early – even at the weekend! We know it doesn’t sound that appealing and everyone likes a lie-in now and then, but generally getting up early is really great for your wellbeing. The day will feel longer and you’ll get loads done. Plus, you’ll probably have better night’s sleep if you get up early every day.
Learning new things is a great way to keep the brain active and if you’ve always wanted to learn French or Spanish, then now’s the time!
And what better excuse to start saving for a holiday, so you can practice your new skill!
If there’s things you’ve always wanted to do but never got round to, then what better way to cheer yourself up than working towards one of your life goals. You’ll feel great when you achieve it! Whether it’s being debt free, having a happy marriage or doing a run for charity – do what you’ve always wanted to.
Getting out in the fresh air will clear your head and make you feel alert and energetic. You could be getting out in the garden or going for a little walk or jog, but just making sure you get enough fresh air in your lungs each day will make you feel great.
Get all the family out and get active together!
It’s easy to stay at work way past 5pm, but be strict with yourself. Leaving work on time will get you home earlier and make your evening feel longer – plus, you’ll get to spend more time with your family.
Don’t forget to say ‘please and thank you‘. Treating others as you’d like to be treated is a great way to feel good about yourself (plus, it’s basically a password to popularity!).
Make sure you teach your little ones the importance of good manners too.
Joining a club is a great way to meet new people – whether it’s an exercise club, a mums’ club or a social club it’s a fun way to get out and about.
Set a date night with your friends and make sure it’s a regular thing, as new research has shown that friends are good for your health! Not staying in contact with your friends poses similar risks to your health as obesity and high blood pressure. Plus, you’ll have a good laugh and no-one knows how to cheer you up better than those closest to you.
More reasons why friends are good for your health.
If you have worries and problems that just don’t seem to go away then think about going counselling. There’s nothing shameful about asking for help and it’s helped so many people overcome anxiety, stress and depression.
Don’t know where to go on holiday with the family? How about camping! OK, we know it might not be for everyone, but there’s something really relaxing about sleeping outside (as long as it’s not raining) and being at one with nature. Give it a try!
Camping essentials – check them out before you go.
It’s amazing the effect a cuddle with a pet can have on how you feel! If you’re lucky enough to have a four-legged friend then one look at their caring faces and a cuddle will leave you feeling happier in no time.
Yoga is said to work wonders when it comes to destressing and relaxing you. And you don’t have to be super-flexible to get started either! Try some simple sequences at home and start to feel the stress leave and the happiness arrive in no time.
Whether it’s a local restaurant you’ve been meaning to try or a beautiful park you’ve been wanting to go for a walk around, don’t put off exploring new places! It doesn’t have to be far, or expensive, but taking the time to go and do something new can really lift the spirits.
Don’t miss our family day out ideas
You can’t quite beat the satisfaction you feel when you’ve spent time and effort making a cake creation, not to mention the glow inside when you see others enjoying your baking efforts too! It doesn’t matter if you’re not the next Mary Berry, just have a go and have fun!
Try one of our easy cake recipes!
Doing something for charity can be a great way to feel happy. Whether it’s organising a coffee morning, setting up a direct debit to make a monthly payment, walking your elderly neoighbour’s dog or running a race, every little bit of time you spend helping others will make you feel so much happier too.
Find out how to take part in Race for Life
Sometimes it’s just a little bit of me-time that can do you the world of good. Although it can feel like a struggle to find some time for yourself, it’s important to dedicate some time just for you. Heading to the cinema alone might feel like a daunting prospect, but imagine how good you’ll feel to know you can enjoy yourself on your own and take some time out from pleasing everyone else?
Simple pleasures can have a big impact on our happiness, and something as straight forward as painting your nails your favourite colour can lift your spirits every time you catch sight of your fingers or toes! Treat yourself to a new shade for as little as £1.99 for a 2True varnish from Superdrug.
Gardening is a great way to feel happier because not only because of the sense of achivement of seeing your plants grow and lawn tidy, but it’s also a great way to get some exercise and some sunshine – both factors proven to help fight depression. Time to get the gardening gloves on!
Getting your haircut can be simple yet highly effective way of lifting your spirits and feeling happier, especially if you’re feeling stuck in a hairstyle rut. A good hair day can put a real spring in your step, so take some time to find the style that will suit you and book yourself in!
We can’t be the only ones that feel so much better after a good spring clean around the house? Going to bed at night with the satisfaction of knowing the house is clean and tidy always makes us happy, and now’s the time to do it! Follow our tips on how to spring clean your home