We all want to be happier. And the quest for joy is, well, never-ending. The good news is, science is on our side: A recent article in New York-based Time magazine listed 10 scientifically-proven ways to be happier. Other than these ways, that include keeping a diary and spending money on experiences (rather than material items), we also encourage getting enough shut-eye nightly because getting sufficient rest definitely boosts happiness levels. Here are five simple ways to wake up with a smile on your face:
Pop The Kettle On
Drinking something warm before bed triggers your body to cool down rapidly, to help you feel sleepy. For instance, sip on some cardamom tea with milk and honey every night.
Relax To Sleep
If you often wake in the night, try progressive muscle relaxation. Focus on your breathing, tense the muscles in your toes for five seconds and then relax them. Now move up to your calves. Tense the muscles there for five seconds, then relax. Work your way up your entire body all the way to your forehead to relax yourself back to sleep.
A study has found that “pink noise”, which sounds like falling rain or leaves rustling in the wind, helps improve the quality of sleep if it’s playing in the background while you doze. Experience pink noise in your bedroom with a fan, or download a sleep app that plays this soothing sound.
Acupressure, a technique taken from Traditional Chinese Medicine, involves applying pressure to specific points on the body to trigger the release of endorphins and neurotransmitters. Place your thumb in the natural dip between the tendons at the base of your wrist and apply firm, even pressure. Hold this pressure for two to three minutes to stimulate melatonin, the hormone that helps you to fall asleep.
Exercise is essential when it comes to sleep, due to its stress-busting qualities. Aim for 30 minutes of exercise a day, finishing at least a few hours before bed. Exercising too close to bedtime can sabotage your sleep, as your body doesn’t have sufficient time to wind down. Gentle, aerobic exercises, such as tai chi and yoga, are particularly effective.
Related: 4 Reasons To Sleep More
Text: Good Health, Bauer Syndication / Additional Reporting: Zarelda Marie Goh