They say the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, but does that truly mean they’re the happiest? As much as we wish they could be, the answer is no, not for everyone. With a sudden increase in obligations and expenses, a lot of people find this time of year the most stressful, instead. Add a deenergizing lack of sunlight from the shorter winter days, and the perceived pressure to put on a happy face, and they might even wonder why they’re bothering to celebrate at all.
If this sounds like it might be you, well, there are lots of reasons to celebrate, but here are five great benefits you won’t want to miss:
- Cultivate a sense of community and connect with family and friends
- Highlight important milestones to instill a sense of meaning
- Create lasting memories to look back on in the future
- Enjoy a little more fun and excitement in your life
- Share a moment of humanity with those who came before and those who will come after
Does this change your perspective, or are we preaching to the choir here? Maybe you love the holiday season, and you’ll be sad to see it go. Surrounding yourself with cheer definitely helps you live a happier life, but remember, you don’t need to depend on a holiday to enjoy yourself. Here are a few ways to create a happy, healthy environment all year round:
- At work: surround your workspace with quotes and affirmations, thank-you notes, and photos of your family and vacations.
- On your commute: put a smiley face on the dashboard of your car to start the day with a smile, or listen to a podcast on public transportation and learn something new every day.
- At home: read before bed instead of social media, get a pillow you love, and set your alarm with a custom message or your favorite song so you wake up to something positive.
(Get more ideas from Project Happiness: 11 Ways to Cultivate Positive Environments That Elevates Happiness.)
Whether you typically enjoy the holiday season or not, there’s always an opportunity to live a little happier. With these new considerations in mind, we hope you’re smiling more than ever before, and making the best of your life every day of the year.