How to promote more happiness and spiritual well-being in your daily life

It can be tempting to think (or overthink) life’s happiness, especially in terms of the big parts of our journey: family, career, education, and health.

But what about the daily pleasures? You know what they often say about the little things, and that’s no truer than when you’re thinking about promoting spiritual happiness day in and day out.

From the way we direct our thoughts to how we spend our time, here are 20 simple ways to be happier—and to promote spiritual well-being—in your daily life.

1. Meditate

Meditation is a popular practice for anyone seeking spiritual well-being, and for good reason. Practicing mindfulness has been shown to lower stress, increase focus, and inspire us to be kinder to ourselves. A daily meditation practice can cultivate those feelings and more.

2. Journal

Writing can offer a great release. If you feel burdened by something weighing heavily on your heart, are grappling with “monkey mind,” or want to create some clarity in your thoughts, journaling can be an excellent tool.

Not sure where to start? Consider creating a gratitude journal, which can help inspire health and happiness.

3. Pray

Prayer is also an opportunity to let go of what’s on your mind and in your heart and to connect to the higher power in your life. A daily prayer practice can help you connect with Spirit and promote inner peace.

4. Listen to Music

There’s no doubt about the power of music. When it comes to happiness, listening to even just one upbeat track can help improve your mood and change your outlook. Consider building your own Happy Playlist to help lighten up your day.

5. Bathe in a Forest

Have you ever heard of forest bathing? It’s more than surrounding yourself with trees.


“What sets forest bathing apart from simply taking a walk in the forest is that we consciously take in the sights, sounds, smells, and the whole experience, rather than allowing our minds to do the things they habitually do, like putting together a mental grocery list,” according to Psychology Today.

Spending time in nature promotes relaxation and improves health. Finding time to connect with any green space or sky can have benefits, but studies have shown that forest bathing, in particular, can do wonders for our nervous systems.

6. Move Your Body

Staying physically active has been shown time and again to have a positive impact on your overall well-being. And you don’t need a full-body workout to see those benefits. A leisurely walk around the block, regular stretching, or a dance around your living room can all support your mood and your health.

7. Garden

Cultivating your own garden offers the dual benefits of spending time outside and encouraging physical movement.

Getting your hands dirty and facilitating growth can make a difference in your day, whether you’re managing a large vegetable garden or a few small indoor plants.

8. Read

Books offer a sense of joy, a sense of peace, a sense of wonder—or just space to get out of your own head for a few minutes.

Whether you enjoy the feel of a paper book in your hand, read on your phone or tablet, or prefer to have a soothing audiobook voice do the reading for you, there are plenty of ways to welcome books into your spiritual happiness practice.

9. Create Community

Our spiritual journeys may seem like a solitary pursuit, but spending time with loved ones can give us just the lift we need. Gather friends or family for a simple bring-your-own-dish meal. Plan an elaborate game night or send a quick group chat or email to friends for a spontaneous meetup after work. Creating community creates happiness for many.

10. Engage Silence

Sometimes the best way to find inner happiness is to find stillness. The Silence is a place of holy peace, a place where we can find the presence of God and release the tension of our lives.

11. Eat Mindfully

Our culture encourages speed and convenience when it comes to our mealtimes. Taking it slow now and then can give us a greater sense of satisfaction.

Eating mindfully can help us enjoy our food more and turn clearing our plate into something more than just checking “eat” off our to-do list.

12. Pay It Forward

Doing something for someone else—particularly when it’s unprompted and unreciprocated—is scientifically proven to generate oxytocin, the chemical that causes happiness in your body.

A simple gesture of opening a door, buying a coffee for a friend (or a stranger), or picking up trash on your daily walk can create a ripple of kindness in your community.

13. Take an ‘Artist Date’

Julia Cameron, author of the classic The Artist’s Way (Souvenir Press, 2020), recommends taking your inner artist out for a date once a week. She writes: “The Artist Date need not be overtly ‘artistic’—think mischief more than mastery. Artist Dates fire up the imagination. They spark whimsy. They encourage play.”

Break out a sketchbook, take your camera on a walk, go to a free museum, or do whatever sounds like fun to do, alone.

14. Sing

You may not be ready to hit the stage, but singing in your shower or your car can have a positive effect on your mood, even helping you to feel “happier, less anxious, less depressed, and overall more plucky about what life has to offer,” according to an article from Prevention.

Opt for creating a Happy Playlist and singing along on the way to work, instead of listening to the news. Belt it out the next time you could use some cheering up!

15. Write a Letter

There are plenty of ways to stay connected these days, but not much beats receiving a sweet letter or a funny card in your mailbox. Receiving a letter makes you feel loved and seen.

The benefits of snail mail can even be felt when you don’t send the letter: Writing a letter to someone from your past can help you find closure or remember fond memories.

16. Doodle

Do you remember how much fun it could be to color as a kid? Grab some paper—whether it’s a notebook designed for the occasion or the back of an old envelope—and spend some time doodling, drawing, or just scribbling.

17. Spend Time with a Pet

Caring for a pet can boost our happiness while simultaneously benefiting our favorite furry friends. Whether slowly petting a cat, taking a dog for a walk, or taking care of a winged or finned companion, you’re sure to get happy vibes in exchange for your time.

No pets in your life? Consider volunteering with your local animal shelter!

18. Volunteer

Speaking of volunteering, it can be a great way to inspire a sense of belonging in your community. In fact, activating your compassion not only creates connection but can enhance our sense of prosperity and support our overall well-being.

19. Explore a New Place

There’s a reason why so many of us value travel: exploring new places can be immensely pleasurable. But you don’t need a passport or to take a week off from work in order to access this joy. Find a park on the other side of town you’ve never been to, a museum you haven’t visited in years, or a new restaurant you’ve been hoping to try.

20. Open the Heart

Physically opening our hearts through yoga can also encourage more compassion and greater presence in our lives. And you don’t have to go full-lotus to benefit from them! Try poses like cow, cobra, or fish—or simply clasp your hands or elbows behind your back and tilt your chin toward the ceiling.

About the Author

Mallory Herrmann is a copy editor and proofreader at Unity World Headquarters. She has an English degree from the University of Missouri and a graduate certificate from the Denver Publishing Institute. She lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she is a reader, writer, and flaneuse.


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