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9 Facts You Might Not Know About Happiness

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Happiness - something so tangible yet elusive at the same time. We feel high on endorphins when we get a pay rise. However, in a few short weeks, this will normalize and become the new baseline. And very soon, we'll be looking for the next promotion. This isn't surprising but why is that so?

With the help of scientific research which had been cleverly summarized into two great infographs from WebpageFx and Happify, we thought we might have found a fun, easy and sustainable recipe to achieve happiness.

1. Remember that our tough circumstances do not affect our happiness

"Tough times do not last, but tough people do", a famous quote used to encourage anyone who is struggling in a difficult situation. According to scientists, this is not just management talk but supported by concrete findings. Only 10% of our happiness is determined by the circumstances we're in. In fact, we get used to our circumstances over time so they do not play as large of a role in our happiness as we might think!

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2. Maintain a constant moderate level of happiness 

According to recent research, maintaining a steady level of moderate happiness is healthier than spikes of extreme happiness. This made perfect sense to the FOTW team because what goes up must come down. Quoting from Happify, "Recent research even suggests that if you focus too much on trying to feel good all the time, you'll actually undermine your ability to feel good at all -- in other words, no amount of feeling good will be satisfying to you, since what you expect (all the time) isn't physically possible for most people."
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3. Savor your happy experiences makes you even happier 

There is not much more for us to elaborate as the infograph does a great job summarizing how we can savor our happy moments. One note of caution is that "sharing a good experience with someone else" is not posting 80 photos on Facebook and counting the number of likes and comments. Doing that will probably give you the exact opposite result. Sharing your holiday adventures with your friends over weekend tea would be a better bet.

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4. Embracing adversity makes you stronger and HAPPIER

This was surprising - people who have gone through adverse situations in life tend to be happier than those whose lives had been a bed of roses. Most of us tend to think that and even be a tad envious of others who ( at least appear to ) have an easier life. Therefore, it is a little counter-intuitive that through adversity, we can become happier.

However, the key thing to note is that happiness can be achieved only after we have got some distance from the adverse situation(s) and are able to make sense of the challenges.

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5. Spending just 20 minutes a day outdoor makes you happy... and it is free!

Simply spending 20 minutes daily outdoor helps to make us happy and it even comes with complimentary upsides of broaden thinking and improved working memory. [WebpageFX]

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6. Reduce excessive shopping and consumption

You might have heard people around you going for "retail therapy" whenever they feel down.  However, studies have found that consumerism is the biggest suppressant of happiness!  Similar to point #2, what goes up must come down.  After the adrenaline high of getting your hands on the latest iPhone, most of us are likely to be complaining about how the iPhone is not really that much better than the old phone.  So, the next time you are planning for a shopping spree, think again -- it could save your wallet and boost your mood.

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7. Set your room temperature at 13.9 degrees Celsius or 57 degrees Fahrenheit

Happiness is maximized at this magical temperature!

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8. Exercise, Exercise, Exercise

We knew that exercise causes the body to produce endorphin which keeps us happy.  But the fact that depression patients treated with exercise are four times less likely to relapse into depression compared with patients treated with medication, definitely reinforces the importance of exercise.

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9. Know that the rich and famous are really not that happy

Many of our modern day unhappiness stems from comparing ourselves with others.  Especially with the rise of reality TV and social media that features the ultra rich and famous, it can be challenging to maintain a positive outlook of our own financial situation.

Perhaps, now that that we know the rich and famous is only 3.5% happier than average, there is nothing much to be inferior about! ;)
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If you are interested in the more well-known facts which are still great reminders for everyone, scroll down for the remaining portions of the info graphs! 

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To download the complete version of the two info graphs, please visit:

Also, do check out some of our other articles in the Health and Fitness sections


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