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The Happiness Hack


I love helping people understand the brain so they can use their own one-of-a-kind cognitive marvel to bring more focus, confidence, and satisfaction to everyday life.

Knowing how the brain works helps us direct our thoughts toward what we want, rather than letting the brain run on autopilot, simply repeating its conditioned patterns.

It’s a thrill to hear readers share how The Happiness Hack helps them get their focus back, reminds them to prioritize relationships and healthy habits, and encourages them to take a step back from life’s frenzy, increasing satisfaction and mastery.

Here are five ways to put your brain to work for you. Like them? Learn more in The Happiness Hack.

 

SET THE COURSE. Left to itself the brain simply runs familiar routines without our awareness or actual “permission.” We can change that by connecting with our inner voice and using it to guide our thoughts and actions. You know that voice: it’s the one that asks “What was I thinking?” or weighs in when we face new or risky situations. The Happiness Hack suggests ways to direct that voice in mindful, results-oriented ways. That helps us take charge of our thoughts and actions so we find more meaning, sense of control, and life satisfaction.

REMEMBER THE BASICS. Simple things like human connection, self-care, and meaning are fundamental to our happiness – after all, they helped shape our very survival as a species. Much of modern life distracts us from the needs and desires at the core of human experience. Our incredibly adaptable brains rewire themselves to adjust to the reality we’re in – often at the expense of happiness.

By understanding the brain’s primal needs, we can strengthen our cognitive foundation and reduce the sense of frenzy and disconnection we often feel as we go about our lives.

TAKE A TECH BREAK. Our devices and apps help us in many ways, but we pay a price in our connection to priorities – and people – that bring us happiness. Even 30 unplugged minutes a day makes a big difference. Make those 30 minutes happen when you first wake up and you’ll help your brain set “ground rules” for the rest of the day.

Like the results? Go tech-free as you wind down before sleep. You’ll help your brain adjust to more restful light and thought patterns so you rest better and get organized for the next day.

SMILE. Smiling is a superpower. The muscle movement in your face signals your left frontal cortex to release mood-lifting neurotransmitters including serotonin and dopamine into your brain. You feel the difference. So do others: mirror neurons in the people you smile at sparks them to smile, too. A virtuous cycle begins.

BELIEVE. Everything offered above is based on science, made simple. These tips, and the many you’ll find in The Happiness Hack, take the latest discoveries from cognitive neuroscience and translate them into easy, actionable ways to work with our brains to reclaim focus, calm, and more of the true satisfaction we seek.