If you have been following these articles over the last several months; you know that happy people are creative, successful, healthy, and resilient. But, if you want want to become and stay happy, it’s going to take work. It might feel hard at first, but it will get easier over time.

There isn’t a magic recipe for happiness; what makes one person happy may not work for another. When trying to figure out what actions you will try, ask yourself three questions: 1) Do I think it will be enjoyable? 2) Do I think it will be meaningful? And 3) Do I think it will feel natural? Just remember, sometimes things don’t feel natural at first, but as you do them, they will.

If you’re unsure where to start, try focusing on gratitude and actions that enhance your relationships. These are surefire ways to increase happiness.

Here are a few examples:

1. Think of someone you are thankful for. Call, text, or email that person and let them know that you appreciate them and why.

2. Each night before dinner, write down something you are grateful for and put it in a jar. You’ll soon have a jar full of gratitude you can quickly review during difficult times!

You can find plenty of “happiness habits” if you search those words on the internet. You can also join the Facebook Group: Happiness Accountability Club for small actions and facts about happiness.

Once you find what works for you it’s essential to keep up the momentum. Here’s how:

1. Stack actions: Try one habit; if it works just a little, add another. For instance, if practicing small acts of kindness works, then add walking in nature. The effects will add up.

2. Establish routines. For me, a good morning routine can make the difference between a good day and a fantastic day. An example of this would be to create a morning routine where you write down three gratitude’s before you do anything else.

3. Find a support system: You don’t need a posse, just one supportive friend. Having someone to support you in happiness (kind of like a running buddy) will help you become and stay happier.

Finally, home isn’t the only place you should be practicing happiness. Try bringing it into the office; it’s a great way to build a creative, cohesive, and successful team!

Here’s what I do: several years back, I started asking staff to share one thing they are grateful for (work or home-related) during meetings. I wasn’t sure how it would catch on. As it turns out, this activity was a pretty big hit; during one session, I felt rushed and didn’t want to ask my colleagues for their “grateful moment.” Before we even got up from the table, one of my cohorts quickly asked: “aren’t we going to share what we are grateful for?” SUCCESS!

Thank you to those of you who have followed these articles; I wish you joy, abundance, health, and love.

Tiffany Determan is a resident of Chisago County.

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