5 Ways to Apply the Latest Research on Happiness | Inc

If someone asks what will make you happy, you’re most likely to say something like a long beach vacation, seeing old friends, or even watching a hilarious video. But whatever you specifically choose, almost all of us opt for something extraordinary and outside of our everyday experience.

That’s a mistake according to research out of Harvard I reported on last year. It’s not that sitting on a sun lounger for a week won’t give you a wellness boost, it’s just that simply looking back on pleasant, day-to-day memories will too, the research showed. And that’s often a lot easier to manage.

“People find a lot of joy in rediscovering a music playlist from months ago or an old joke with a neighbor, even though those things did not seem particularly meaningful in the moment. The studies highlight the importance of not taking the present for granted and documenting the mundane moments of daily life to give our future selves the joy of rediscovering them,” Harvard Business School’s Ting Zhang commented at the time.

Interesting. I’ve been using a hashtag journal for about 100 days now and, I have to say, it’s a lot more manageable and gets things down to the absolute essentials. It’s small enough to not have an excuse to skip, and provides just enough detail to jog memories.