Picutre by THOR, licensed by CC.

Of course I'm not speaking from experience (cough), but it is possible to get all cynical about happiness. When you start to feel this way, it seems like the day is just something to get through rather than something to enjoy. And Internet lists about ways to feel happier kinda come off as silly or impossible.

And yet here I am, the author of such an article. Why have I had a change of heart? Because I've found that it is actually possible to turn your mood around. In fact, there's a ton of scientific evidence that little things like smiling, or thinking positive thoughts, can totally make you feel happier.

It makes sense, especially since being happy really is a choice. It's about looking at your day differently, and choosing to not sulk or be pessimistic. For example, if you're stuck in traffic, you can look at the situation with doom and gloom and think "this would only happen to me." Or, you can look at it for what it is — traffic, which happens to everyone, and maybe a nice time to be alone with your thoughts. See? Perspective.

Reach Out To A Friend IRL

Social media is obviously the easiest way to stay connected to friends and family (and it saves you the oft-dreaded ordeal of leaving the house). But nothing beats actually calling someone up, or meeting them in person — at least when it comes to your happiness levels.

In fact, it's not necessarily possible to get genuine happiness from our online lives. As Lindsey Murray noted on Real Simple, "More likes don’t necessarily add up to more happiness, according to research from the University of Michigan. The more the study participants (82 young adults) used Facebook over a two-week period, the more their life satisfaction levels declined. In contrast, the researchers found that direct interactions with others — whether it be over the phone or face-to-face — actually helped people to feel better over time." So instead of just clicking "like" buttons all night long, go get a cup of coffee with a friend, or give your mom a call. You'll feel much better for it, I promise.


Read the full article "7 Ways To Feel Happier Throughout The Day" at Bustle.com.