We’re living in a unique moment in time that is making it increasingly hard to live a happy life. How do we stick to the habits of happy people when most of us are struggling to get by, feed our children, raise them with values and compete to be successful in this tough world of business.

We are compounded with negative news from every angle – on a daily basis reading hate filled stories of people hurting one another, trying to squash the rights of certain groups and in general, there is a feeling of negativity in the world unlike what we’ve seen in a very long time. But there is a better way.

25 Habits of Happy People

#1 They Forgive

Letting bitterness go is hard – but dying an unhappy soul is a shitty way to go. Forget the wrong doings – and choose yourself over other persons stupidity.

#2 They Laugh

#3 They Are Generous

MRI studies have actually shown that the act of giving triggers the same area of your brain as eating chocolate! So the next time you see someone struggling, offer to help. Even if it means giving them $5 for their next meal, you both will feel the effects of your generosity in the long run.

#4 They Breathe Deeply

Next, on the habits of happy people list is breathing. When we breathe deeply we oxygenate our blood which in turn causes our brain to release happy chemicals known as endorphins. Take a few deep breaths right now and see if you don’t feel just a little better.

#5 They Sit In Silence

Our world is so fast paced now that most of us don’t even remember driving home. We are programmed to automate our lives, but this forces us to lose focus on what’s most important. Practice sitting in silence for at least 10 minutes a day. No noises, no distractions. Just you and your habit of happiness.

#6 They Sleep

A well rested brain is a happy brain. Get a minimum of 8 hours of sleep every night – you will thank yourself later.

#7 They Stay Positive

This is hard when the pressures of life have you down. A key of the habits of happy people is to stay positive – even in the face of adversity.

#8 They Choose Their Friends Wisely

Don’t hang out with people who bring you down. Not if they’re family and not if they’re friends. End of story. You’re happiness and health is more important.

#9 They Don’t Let Others Influence Their Emotions

I’m the first person to get pissed off at work when someone does something wrong to me. Emotions in life can run high (especially if you’re a Pisces like me) – but I’ve learned to focus away from the negativity and stay in my own true place of zen – regardless of how others around me are behaving.

The key here is to remember that they are just people too (even the d-bag in the corner office). They are probably having a hard time in life and are lashing out at you because you are the closest object to them. Just let it go, don’t feed into it and you’ll be a happier person as a result.

#10 They Spend Time Outside

Fresh air – smell it. You feel better already?

#11 They Dream

#12 They Don’t Just Dream

Huh? Yes, you heard that correctly. Dreaming can be amazing – but what is even more euphoric is accomplishing what you dreamed of!

#13 They Love Themselves First

Take that first bite before you feed them. Put your oxygen mask on first before helping others. If you don’t stay nourished by protecting your own well being first, you won’t be of any use to them later on.

#14 They Have Pets

Nothing comes close to true bliss more than the fur of a fluffy animal. Unconditional love definitely has a place on this list of habits of happy people.

#15 They Outsource Their Weaknesses

I’m terrible at cooking – but I could care less because I simply married a chef. Don’t struggle with shit you know you will never be good at, focus on your strengths and give the rest to someone else.

#16 They Fire Their Bad Boss

If you boss is an a$$ – create a plan to fire them. It might mean finding a new job or starting your own biz – but life is too short to be a door mat. Don’t tolerate people treating you like dirt. You are more important than that.

#17 They Move

The one time in life where I can remember having zero symptoms of depression also happened to be the ONLY time in my life when I was exercising one to two times a day. I know it’s hard to get moving, especially if you feel like you’d rather be living under a rock – but you need to do it.

Start with a 10-minute walk a day and build from there. Or better yet, if you can handle it just go run for a few minutes. The faster you can get your heart rate up, the more endorphins will be flowing. Runners highs aren’t just for runners!

#18 They Don’t Let Road Blocks Block Them From Happiness

Someone else’s sadness does NOT have to be your sadness. Think about it.

#19 They Smile (BIG)

#20 They Help People

Because if you don’t, really what’s the point. Plus – Karma is real and she can be a real bitch too.

#21 They Listen 

Put your phone down and really pay attention the next time someone is speaking to you. The connections you build this way will generate deeper relationships and more genuine feelings of happiness.

#22 They are Nostalgic

Take a trip down memory lane, look at old photos and smile.

#23 They Forget the Tech

Unplug. You will be happy you did.

#24 They Love

#25 They Try

This last one really is easier than you think. Each time you start to have negative thoughts, simply force yourself to say something positive. It doesn’t matter what it is and it doesn’t matter if you even believe it. Just say it to yourself.  Studies have proven that those who actively try to feel happier do feel happier. So no harm in trying here.

Let us know how you did with the list above and share with us what other habits you have for living a happy life in the comments below.

* Photo credits to Octavio Fossatti, Dayne Topkin, Ben White and Andrew Branch