You’ve heard them all before. The things you need to do to become happier. Things like be grateful, count your blessings, do things you enjoy, surround yourself with positive people, find the silver lining in every challenging situation. And so on and so forth.

Not knocking those. No, not at all. They are all GREAT things to do and they will make a significant impact on your level of overall happiness.

And who doesn’t want to be happier?

Aren’t we all, at some point or another, searching for the magic formula that will rid us of our fear, self-doubt, resentment, emotional pain, chronic stress, overwhelming anxiety or life sucking depression?

Even for those of us who are not struggling in the big ways right now, we all do struggle with something or other at least sometimes.

And I bet there are very few of us who would turn down the opportunity to feel even just a little bit happier at many a given moment.

Sometimes, though, when we hear the same happiness boosting advice over and over again – regardless of how much of a positive impact adhering to said advice would give us, over time it gets old, and tired and loses its luster and appeal.

Case and point, The Golden Rule.

Think about it, it’s probably the most useful and life changing piece of advice out there, but how many of us groan when we hear Do unto others as you…..

So, in an earnest attempt to freshen things up and give you something new and novel to have a go at, I give you:

3 Counterintuitive Things that Will Make You Happier

Call a Friend: But WAIT! There’s a twist. Next time YOU are feeling down or blue or sad or disappointed or discouraged or frustrated, call a friend and ask them how THEY are doing. 

And I’ll tell you why this will make you happier.

Because being there for someone else makes a way bigger impact on our happiness than waiting around for other people to be there for us… at least some of the time. 

Call that friend, ask them how they are doing. Listen and listen good. Support, encourage and be right there for them. And then when they are done – hang up. Don’t talk about your stuff at all. 

And I bet you they will feel really grateful and appreciative of you for giving the gift of your love and attention. Even if they don’t overtly say it, know they are feeling it.

You will automatically start feeling happier just because you were able to be there for someone else who needed you. You focused on what you could give, not what you could get. 

But, if, after hanging up you still feel like you need to talk it out, call someone else in your support network and ask if they have a few minutes to let you vent.

Greet em Like a Rock Star: The next time you meet up with or welcome a friend or family member in to your home, greet them like they are a rock star.

Get excited, hug, kiss, yell, celebrate, whatever! But great them with all of the excitement and enthusiasm you can muster.

Doing this will accomplish 2 things. It will make them feel great in that moment and seeing them feel great will make you feel great. And it will also make them like and appreciate you more. And who can get enough of feeling loved and appreciated? I know I can’t.

Do that One Awful Thing: that one thing on your to-do list you’ve been putting off for way. Too. Long.

That thing that’s been hanging over your head or causing that pit feeling in your stomach. That thing you’ve been avoiding because it’s either boring, or tedious, or challenging, or just plain not fun. 

But you need to do it. You have to do it. And until you do it’s going to feel as awkward and mildly uncomfortable as wet socks. (or you can do this instead)

So go do it now. Just get it done. And then, afterward, you will say Good for Me! I did it and now I don’t even have to think about it.

AND you will also get the joy and satisfaction from knowing it was something you really didn’t want to do, but you pulled up your socks, toughed it out, and did it anyway. And that sense of accomplishment is always happiness making and so so satisfying.

If you enjoyed this, please do share it. And if you do, let me know so I can thank you!

I’m Julia Kristina MA, RCC,  an I’m a CBT, Mindfulness, and Positive Psychology registered (aka licensed) therapist and life coach out of Vancouver BC.

If you’d like to work with me 1:1 I do in-person sessions from my office in downtown Vancouver, or virtually to any where in the world via SKYPE.