Get Happy with These 7 Simple Steps

Verified by Mindmonia
Verified by Mindmonia

We teach mindfulness for free and use scientific studies for our articles

Happy Pose

The approach to happiness is often the following: I must first achieve my goal in order to get happy. Once your goal is achieved, it won’t last long before you ask yourself again how to be happier.

You may see yourself in the following examples:

  • You graduate from college in order to get a well-paid job and get happy.
  • You work for a promotion in order to have more influence and get happy.
  • You do sports in order to lose weight and get happy.

Generally speaking, the way you tend to think of how to be happy in life is:

Work hard → achieve your goals → be happy

However, this is unsatisfying and doesn’t work. What is going to happen once you have a well-paid job, got your promotion or achieved your fitness goals? You’ll be happy and satisfied for a short amount of time but will quickly seek new and more ambitious goals.

This way of thinking isn’t the right way if you want to stay happy in the long run.

Therefore, the way to become happy should look like this:

Be happy → work hard → achieve your goals

Your focus should not be to become happy someday in the future but to be happy now

This attitude is not only a great way to get happy in the long run, but it will also help you to reduce stress

That shift in your thoughts can happen today. Read this simple guide and learn to increase your happiness level today.

Jump ahead to any of the sections below:

H = S + C + V: A Formula For Happiness

Happy man in car

Happiness research defines the following happiness formula: 

H = S + C + V

Happiness level = Set range + Circumstances + Voluntary Control

Your set range is your genetics which is predetermined and can’t be changed. You may be genetically wired to be very happy most of the time or sad most of the time. Or you’re somewhere in between. However, this is just one part of the formula.

Circumstances can be changed, but only with a certain effort and in the long run. Examples of life circumstances are the job you have, the apartment you live in or whether you are married or not.

Voluntary control is your conscious actions. This includes not only specific actions but also your thoughts and your mental attitudes, that are, the way you react to things that happen in your life. For example in politics, at work or in your marriage. 

You have a positive impact on this variable, when you act positive, think positive and have a positive attitude in general. For example, doing something good for others, optimism, and serenity will thrive your happiness.

Whether you have positive or negative thoughts is often influenced and triggered unconsciously. Therefore, the subconscious mind has a big influence on how happy you are. 

Happiness is made up of three components, whereby the three components are not equally contributing to your total level of happiness (H):

  1. Your genetics make up 50%
  2. Your life circumstances make up 10%
  3. Your intentional actions make up 40%

According to this formula, you are the one who determines if you live a happy life or not, because you can influence your happiness level by 50% (life circumstances + conscious actions).

These numbers illustrate why money and success do not automatically make you a truly happy person. 

Robin Williams, one of the best paid and most successful actors, winner of several acting awards, such as the Academy Awards and the Grammy Awards, is an example of successful personalities who tragically committed suicide. On the other hand, there are those who are impoverished, have no financial security, no success in business and no money, but are always happy. 

This also clarifies why life circumstances define only 10% of your happiness level.

You can’t affect your genetics and you can only change your life circumstances with bigger efforts. Your own actions, however, account for 40% of your happiness and can be changed and used to your own advantage today. That’s big!

Happy Habits

Enjoying time at the beach

The guide to happiness that we are about to share with you comes from Neil Pasricha. He is a well-known and sympathetic entrepreneur, speaker and author in the field of positivity and leadership. 

One of his international bestsellers The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything describes seven steps on how to get happy and supports these happiness habits with studies that scientifically prove the effects of his 7-step-routine.

Neil says:

10% of our happiness is what happens to us. So 90% of our happiness isn’t based on what’s happening in the world! It’s based on how we see the world.

Here’s a summary of the seven happy habits to get happy:

  1. Write down five things every week for which you are grateful for
  2. Meditate five minutes daily
  3. Write every evening for 20 minutes about your positive experiences
  4. Hit flow daily
  5. Walk three times a week for 20 minutes
  6. Do five random acts of kindness a week
  7. Take a daily break from everything

Whether you’re wondering how you can be happy at work, how you can be happy single, or how you can be happy with yourself, these seven habits will help you become happy no matter what situation you find yourself in.

1. Be Grateful

Write down five things you are grateful for that happened within the last week

Frequency: 1x per week

Time needed: 20 minutes

One of the seven things that make you happy and that we at Mindmonia often mentioned is: gratitude.

Neil Pasricha suggests that once a week you should write down five things that happened within the last week, for which you are grateful for. This helps immensely to get happy everyday.

You can take notes the classic way by pen and paper or by using apps or other tech products. We can either recommend the standard notes app on your smartphone or a journal app like “Day One” (available for iOS and Android). A journal app is a great deal as it allows you to use it for the third step as well, which is “Write a Journal“.

2. Meditate

Meditate 5 minutes daily

Frequency: 7x per week

Time needed: Each time 5 minutes

According to studies that Neil states, meditation helps the brain to increase happiness by raising the general awareness of your own thoughts and feelings.

Five minutes of meditation a day should be enough. If you enjoy meditation, however, you can meditate for more than 5 minutes. For example twice a day for 20 minutes.

In addition to its positive effect on your happiness, regular meditation comes with more benefits, like:

  • Stress reduction
  • Sharper focus
  • Helps with depression
  • Reduces pain
  • Improves memory
  • Increases self-control

These are by far not all benefits of meditation. Learn more in our guide “Meditation for Beginners“.

3. Write a Journal

Write 20 minutes daily, at night, about positive experiences

Frequency: 7x per week

Time needed: Each time 20 minutes

The third step is to write a journal. Neil recommends recording your experiences in a journal for 20 minutes daily (ideally in the evening). You should especially focus on the positive experiences you have had during the day. This could be, for example, negotiating a contract in your favor or having a good lunch with a friend.

Journaling allows you to re-experience your positive feelings as you write. It helps you to remember things you like about people and experiences.

4. Hit Flow

Hit your flow daily

Frequency: 7x per week

Time needed: Not defined

Hitting flow means you are totally absorbed in what you are doing. You feel challenged and use your abilities to the maximum at the same time. These are the moments in which time flies by and you are completely absorbed in your activity. 

This can be, for example, a hobby, certain activities at work or just a challenging conversation.

Hit your flow daily, for as often and as long as possible.

5. Go for a Walk

Walk 20 minutes, three times a week

Frequency: 3x per week

Time needed: Each time 20 minutes

Walking means being active. That means that you don’t necessarily have to go for a walk. You can also go running or just do sports in general. What‘s important here is that you get active at least three times a week for 20 minutes each.

Again, you can use an app for this, if you want to approach this step more analytically. The apps “Running Walking Tracker Goals” for iOS and “Runkeeper” for Android show you the distance and time you covered. 

Other than that, physical activities have other benefits for your body and mind that were proven in countless studies in the past decades.

6. Do Random Acts of Kindness

Do five random acts of kindness a week

Frequency: 5x per week

Time needed: Each time 1 minute

This tip is twice as great because it does not only make you happy but also the people you involve in your acts of kindness. Do five random acts of kindness every week, such as opening the door for someone or getting a co-worker a fresh cup of coffee. You decide how much time you want to spend on this. One act of kindness can take less than a minute or many hours.

Furthermore, acts of kindness are also part of the 12 Laws of Karma.

In his book, Neil states that random acts of kindness have the greatest positive impact on your well-being because they make you feel good and others value you at the same time.

By the way: Acts of kindness are positive events that you can write in your journal.

7. Take a Break from Everything

Allow yourself a daily time-out from everything (especially electronic devices)

Frequency: 7x per week

Time needed: Not defined

In our modern lifestyle, we are constantly under tension, should always be available and get flooded with information. That’s why it’s especially important that you take a break to recharge your energy.

Take a daily break from everything. For example, by not using your smartphone for two hours before falling asleep or by consistently pursuing your hobby and while doing so isolating yourself from the outside world.

You can combine this point very well with meditation.

Apps to Get Happy

Now that we’ve provided you with an easy guide on how to get happy, we would like to give you a few tips and tools which will make it easier for you to implement them into your daily routine.

Here are the apps that you can use to develop a happiness routine (we at Mindmonia are using them ourselves):

  • Oura for meditation
  • Day One to write the journal of gratitude, to record your acts of kindness and to write down all positive events.
  • Running Walking Tracker Goals (Goals-Fitness) to record the distance and time you walked.
  • Reminders or Google Keep Notes to set reminders in order to develop a certain routine and to finally turn the seven tips into a habit

Screenshot of happiness apps


The seven steps of this happiness routine are based on science and an international bestseller. Thereby we ensure that the focus of our tips, as always, lies on practicality and suitability for everyday life.

Once again, here are the seven tips at a glance:

  1. Be grateful
  2. Meditate
  3. Write a Journal
  4. Hit flow
  5. Go for a walk
  6. Do good deeds
  7. Take a Break from Everything

All of them combined are the seven steps to get happy and allow you to make use of the 40% of your happiness that you can affect easily.

As mentioned previously, 40% of your happiness can be influenced by conscious actions. The other two components are genetics with 50% and your life circumstances with 10%.

However, we need to specifically point out one thing: Happiness research is much more than one bestselling book of Neil Pasricha. You cannot and will not find out what truly makes you happy by reading one single guide.

For example, there is a famous Harvard Study, which runs since 1938 and states that a happy life depends largely on your relations with other people. Then there is another study that states happiness correlates to the amount of water you drink every day.

Now we need you to use mindfulness in order to realize that there are different approaches to get happy. Furthermore, make yourself aware of the fact that not everyone can be pleased the same way. Mainly because of different genetics and because the greater sense of being happy is something that you have to define for yourself.

Remember, just like cooking, driving or reading, you can learn how to be happier.

Learn more about topics related to mindfulness and how mindfulness helps you achieve your goals by subscribing to our free newsletter now. Thank you for reading.

Share on whatsapp
Share on telegram
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email
Join Our Newsletter - it's free

Learn how to master mindfulness to achieve anything you want

We’re committed to your privacy! Mindmonia uses your email address to contact you about our relevant content. You may unsubscribe at any time. For more information, check out our Privacy Policy.

Read more handcrafted articles

Please check your email inbox now to confirm your email.

(It’s easy)

Just go to your inbox, open the email from Mindmonia, and click the link.
That’s it!

PS: If you don’t see a confirmation email, please check your spam/junk folder. Sometimes the confirmation message ends up there by mistake.