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只用十分钟!改些小习惯能让生活更幸福

BusinessInsider 2017年12月11日

只要对日常生活习惯稍作调整,就可以过得更幸福、更健康、做事更有成效。

有时,让我们感到开心的是一些大事,比如孩子诞生、大幅升职,或是彩票中奖。

但有些时候,一些小事也会让人高兴。比如上班路上遇到一个鲜花盛开的花园拍些美照,或者跟久别的朋友重逢相拥。

本文着重探讨以上第二种令人幸福感增加的方式。美国财经科技新闻网站BusinessInsider提供了七条建议,认为只要对日常生活习惯稍作调整,就可以过得更幸福、更健康、做事更有成效。改变过程最多只需要十分钟,而且今天就可以开始行动。

记录个人想法和感受

著有畅销书《每周工作四小时》的投资者蒂姆·费里斯建议,每天早上不妨在日记里记下想法。

费里斯采用了茱莉亚·卡梅伦在《艺术家之路:清早记日记》(The Artist’s Way Morning Pages Journal)一书中介绍的方法。他强调,写下文字的过程比写了什么内容更重要。而且,记日记能让人摆脱恐惧和担忧的情绪,不用纠结在不良情绪里。

我们还可以尝试《五分钟日志》(Five Minute Journal)介绍的方法。书中摘取了一些鼓舞人心的名言,也提出了一些发人深省的问题。

如果晚上记日记更方便,也可以调整时间。

上班途中和同路人聊天

心理学期刊《实验心理学杂志:普通心理学》(Journal of Experimental Psychology: General)

2014年刊发的一项研究发现,在上班途中和同行的乘客聊聊天,人们会开心得多。

不过大部分受访者都表示,如果上班途中和陌生人攀谈,心情可能会受影响,效果可能也没那么好。

但如果你不用总担心打扰到别人,能大胆主动开口,可能对别人和自己都有帮助。

上班路上拍一张漂亮的照片

这个点子来自谷歌母公司Alphabet旗下创新实验室Google X的高管、《解开快乐之谜》(Solve for Happy)一书作者莫·乔达特。每天步行去上班途中,乔达特都会找到些漂亮的东西拍下来。

乔达特之所以想到这种法子,是为了充分投入寻找美好事物,从而避免消极情绪。他认为这也是一种冥想:只是不用特别留意呼吸吐纳,也不用刻意面壁,只要认真关注周围世界就可以。

为新一天计划些开心的事。

强迫自己开心通常会适得其反。

期刊《情绪》(Emotion)2014年发布的一项研究发现,关键在于“优先做快乐事”,或者说把一天的工作生活内容规划好,要包括一些可能让你开心的事。

上述研究报告的合著者兰纳·卡塔利娜向美国科学杂志《科学美国人》表示,为了规划日程时尽可能提升幸福感,应该“仔细考虑能让自己满意或者快乐的活动,尽可能为之腾出时间。对有些人来说,可能就是规律地做园艺和烹饪,还有些人可能喜欢经常跟好朋友联系。”

关键在于不要强迫自己在特定时间产生某种特定感受。

为晚上计划一件要优先完成的事

下班回家后,由于感觉疲惫,又不像工作一样任务有硬性的截止期限,很容易浪费时间。

因此,工作效率专家、畅销书《时间管理手册》的作者劳拉·范德卡姆建议,工作日晚上设定一件需要优先完成的事,可能是晚饭后陪家人散步,或是给朋友打个电话,或者读上100页小说,也可能是上一节健身课。

范德卡姆说:“下班回家很容易觉得,太累了什么都做不了。但其实有好几个小时,浪费就太可惜了。”

将杂务分出去

《美国国家科学院院刊》(Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)最近刊发的一项跨文化研究发现,愿意花钱节省时间的人往往比不愿意为此花钱的人过得幸福。购买半成品食物或者请人打扫卫生都属于此类投资。

有趣的是,研究调查中很少有受访者表示,愿意为了节省个人时间花钱。这意味着,大部分人都没有意识到这种联系。

每天早中晚饭都订外卖可能有些过分。但长远来看,假如你今天把衣服送出去洗,明天利用家政服务平台Task Rabbit组装书架,都可能减少很多麻烦。

列举三件心存感激之事

美国心理学家马丁·塞利格曼和同事共同设计了有助于增加幸福感的“三件顺心事”训练。加州大学伯克利分校教育研究中心“至善科学中心”(Greater Good Science Center)介绍如下:

每天晚上临睡前写下三件顺心的事,再解释下为何感觉顺心。开心的事可大可小,小到爱人主动扔垃圾,大到工作上升职加薪。要尽可能写详细,还要写清楚你的感受。

塞利格曼和同事发现,人们坚持写顺心事六个月后会感到更幸福,抑郁情绪减少。

要是觉得早上更适合,也可以早上起来写。(财富中文网)

译者:Pessy

审稿:夏林

Sometimes it’s the big things that make us happy — the birth of a child, an impressive promotion, winning the lottery.

But other times, it’s the small things. Think capturing the most beautiful photo of a flower garden on your way to work, or hugging a friend you haven’t seen in a while.

It’s the second type of happiness boosters that we’re focusing on here. Below, Business Insider has rounded up seven tweaks to your daily routine — all of which take 10 minutes or less — that can make you happier, healthier, and more productive. Read on for ideas you can implement starting today.

Jot down your thoughts and feelings

Author and investor Tim Ferris recommends jotting down your thoughts in a journal every morning.

Ferris uses “The Artist’s Way Morning Pages Journal” by Julia Cameron, and emphasizes that the process of writing matters more than the final product. What’s more, journaling allows you to get fears and worries out of your head so you can stop fixating on them.

Another journal option is the “Five Minute Journal,” which comes with inspirational quotations and thought-provoking questions.

You can switch things up and journal in the evening if that’s more convenient.

Chat with a fellow commuter

A 2014 study, published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, found that people are much happier during their commutes when they engage another passenger in conversation.

Still, most people surveyed said they expected their commute to be less positive and productive if they talked to a stranger.

If you can get over the fear that you’d be bothering someone else, you might be doing them — and yourself — a favor.

Take one beautiful photo on your way to work

That’s a tip from Mo Gawdat, who is an executive at Alphabet’s moonshot lab, X, and the author of “Solve for Happy.” Every day during his walk to the office, Gawdat searches for something beautiful and snaps its photo.

The idea behind searching for one perfect photo is that it prevents Gawdat from thinking distressing thoughts, since he’s fully engaged in searching for beauty. He calls it a form of meditation: Instead of focusing on his breath, or a spot on the wall in front of him, he’s focusing on the world around him.

Plan something joyful for tomorrow

Forcing yourself to be happy generally backfires.

A 2014 study, published in the journal Emotion, found that the key is “prioritizing positivity,” or structuring your day so that it includes activities that are likely to make you happy.

To schedule your days to maximize happiness, study co-author Lahnna I. Catalino told Scientific American you should “reflect on the activities that bring you contentment or joy and make time for these events in your daily life. For some people, this could mean regularly setting aside time for gardening and cooking; for others, it could mean making time to connect with good friends.”

The idea is not to force yourself to feel any specific way at any given moment.

Set one priority for this evening

It’s tempting to waste the hours after you get home from work — you’re tired and there aren’t any hard deadlines to meet like there are at the office.

So productivity expert and author Laura Vanderkam recommends setting one (simple) priority for every weekday evening. Maybe you want to go for a walk with your family after dinner, or call a friend, or read 100 pages of a novel, or go to a gym class.

Vanderkam said: “It is very easy to come home after work and just feel like, well, I’m too tired to do anything. But you have several hours then that are going and you will never get that back.”

Consider outsourcing a chore

A recent cross-cultural study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that people who spend money to save time tend to be happier than those who don’t. Think paying for a meal-kit service or hiring a house cleaner.

Interestingly, few people surveyed said they would spend a hypothetical sum of money on services that would save them time, suggesting that most of us aren’t aware of this connection.

Ordering takeout for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day might be going overboard. But sending out your laundry today and having a Task Rabbit assemble that bookshelf tomorrow might save you a headache in the long run.

List three things you’re grateful for

The “three good things” exercise was developed by psychologist Martin Seligman and colleagues. Here’s how it works, according to UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center:

Every night before bed, write down three things that went well for you, along with an explanation of why they went well. The good things can be as seemingly small as your partner taking out the garbage or as big as getting a promotion. Make sure you include as much detail as possible, as well as how the event made you feel.

Seligman and colleagues found that people who used the three good things exercise felt happier and less depressed for six months.

Again, you can do the same exercise in the morning, if that works better for you.

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