Is Mental Wellness a Choice?


Did you know that roughly 40 percent of your happiness is in your hands? According to some experts in the field of positive psychology, happiness is a choice that anyone can make. Try altering your life for the better by doing the same with your attitude. Below are five tips to help you get started.

Make a little effort.

Two studies published this year in the Journal of Positive Psychology found that simply trying to be happier could actually increase mood and well-being for the better. Participants were separated into two groups, each one assigned to listening to “happy” music. One group was told to try and feel happy, while the other was instructed to not actively lift their moods. The group that tried reported the happiest moods after the music was over.

Make happiness your #1 goal.

According to psychologists, people who are happy choose to make happiness a top priority in life. Many skills can place you on the right path towards happiness, such as learning self-management skills, good interpersonal skills, and good career-related skills, also choosing to surround yourself with people who also want to be happy can increase the likelihood of happiness. One psychologist told WebMD that those who make truth a priority are more likely to experience happiness.

Take account of the little things.

Rick Hanson, a neuropsychologist and author of Hardwiring Happiness, says that our brains are wired to seek out the negative. This “negativity bias” can cause more intense reactions to negative situations, compared to how we react to positive ones. By appreciating the small moments we enjoy, such as a warm cup of coffee in the morning or the laughter of a loved one, we can counter these innate, negative responses. Hanson said, “People don’t recognize the hidden power of everyday experiences.”

Practice gratitude.

It is fully within your control to cultivate thankfulness and gratitude. A scientifically backed way to increase your happiness, appreciating the simple pleasures in life can life your spirits. According to a report in the Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, grateful people pay close attention to “those pleasures in life that are available to most people.”

Let yourself be happy.

Bronnie Ware, author of The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, found that through her years working with the elderly their one most common regret was not “letting” themselves be happy. No matter where you are, no matter what your situation is, you can still choose to be happy. Happiness is a perspective that we all know and can experience whenever we’d like to; so why not always?


Make sure to consult your primary care physician or chiropractor for all health related advice.

Story Credit

Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Free Creative Commons Images for Colorful Souls!

This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.