Ask Dr. Joy Miller: Bringing joy and happiness to your life

By WEEK Producer

Ask Dr. Joy Miller: Bringing joy and happiness to your life

August 22, 2012 Updated Aug 22, 2012 at 3:12 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- If you asked most Americans if they wanted to feel contented and happy, they would wholeheartedly say 'yes'. But, are we doing what brings us contentment and happiness in a real way?

Tonight, we will look at some simple techniques to bring you joy and happiness --if you are willing to do your part.

Everyone wants to be happy, so what are some of the key elements that could be focused on every day?
1. Simple things bring us joy, but we have to be aware and mindful or we will ignore the pleasure.
2. Bring some playfulness into the day. Find a way to laugh. Be silly: giggle, run in the park, dance, play a game, watch a comedy or just do something that makes you a little playful
3. Practice gratitude. We can't say it enough. Happy and contented people are those who witness things that they are thankful for in their lives. Look for the positives and make sure you acknowledge what you have vs. what you are missing
4. Let go of urgency. We've all become racers. We tend to go so fast that we don't savor the moment. It seems as though everyone is rushing with nowhere to go. There will always be tasks and things that need to be done, but when the day's over did you miss the joyfulness of the day?
5. Notice what works. Too often, we notice how things don't go our way, but it's important to see what things go easily for you. Perhaps spending alone time with your child brings additional closeness or working earlier in the day produces more effectiveness. Focus on the flow of things that happen positively.
6. Learn something new. See life as a child does and become an explorer. Find something new and exciting and add the knowledge and skills to your daily life. You'll be amazed at how happy you become when you enhance your knowledge.
7. Do something that will take your breath away. Look for beauty, or realize your accomplishment and feel the pride. Look at nature and witness it's amazing complexity and simplicity, or look for inspiring stories that will fill your heart with joy.

Contentment and happiness is an inside job, and the only one who can make you this way is YOU!

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