Researchers at Harvard University asked over 2.200 people what they were doing at different times. That was linked to the degree of happiness they were experiencing at that time. Remarkable conclusion: regardless of the type of activity – which included shopping, working, eating, sex – it was mainly the degree of attention that determined that ‘happy feeling’. The greater the attention in the moment, the greater the happiness.
A nice vacation that is over too soon. A good book that develops into a real ‘page turner’, or a party that is ‘suddenly’ over. If you live in the moment, you don’t notice time passing. Full attention enhances the experience. All the more reason to live more in the here and now, but that is difficult. We are constantly lost in thought, talking to ourselves as it were. In addition, we live in a digital age where smartphones and other gadgets constantly demand our attention. The result: about 47% of the time our thoughts are not in the here and now, according to Harvard.
Fortunately, we can do something about it. Start with the overwhelming avalanche of information that plagues many of us: make sure all the ‘notifications’ on your smartphone are switched off, so that you are not distracted by every incoming mail. Only check your mail twice a day, at set times. Unsubscribe to newsletters that you don’t even read and create set ‘time-out’ moments in your daily routine: working nonstop for hours on end is not good for anyone, or for the results. With these practical tips, the daily schedule takes on a new character, but that will not necessarily lead to more happiness. For that, inner peace is essential.
If you need more peace and less stress, then you would do well to try meditating. Mindfulness, yoga or whatever way suits you: anyone can meditate. It is not vague or airy-fairy; in fact meditation is nothing more than giving yourself 100% attention, resulting in deep relaxation. Difficult? Of course not. With an interactive app, meditation is made simple and accessible.
We have said it before: the real key to happiness lies with you. Consciously choose what is really important in your life. Do what you have to do 100%. See, hear, smell, taste and feel what is going on around you. Not later, not tomorrow, now. Take control of your own life: Get into The Zone.
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