More money does not equate to more happiness

Most adults know the importance of having money. But when your income reaches a certain point, $60,000 a year, making more money does not necessarily make you any happier. In fact, the level of happiness between a person making $60,000 and one million dollars a year is practically the same.

Read more here.

Having trouble sleeping?

I used to have insomnia for a brief period of my life. It began out of nowhere. I was quite perplexed and worried about why I was not able to fall asleep. Like most of you, I started doing my research on the internet looking for answers to my insomnia. I tried all of the seemingly practical tips but I was still having trouble falling asleep. I even went to a doctor but all he wanted to do was give me sleeping pills. I decided to not take any drugs because I did not want to be dependent on them.

I became quite a zombie during the day since I couldn’t focus due to a lack of sleep. The good news is that my insomnia eventually went away. I am not sure what did the trick but I would like to pass on a few things that I learned from my insomnia.

1. Don’t get stressed out because you can’t fall asleep right away. If you can’t fall asleep, lying in bed and relaxing will eventually put you to sleep. We have all had nights when we can’t fall asleep.

2. Avoid external stimulants prior to bedtime. For me, it was to turn off the computer one hour before bedtime. For others, it means staying away from coffee, alcohol, or talking on the phone. Only you know what you do that cause you to not be able to fall asleep.

3. Go to bed and wake up at the same time. Getting on a sleep schedule will train your body when it is time for bed. I know the temptation is strong to sleep late when you go to bed late, but if you have insomnia, it is important to get up at the same time everyday.

4. Start to wind down an hour or two before bed. For some, it might be reading a book, listening to some relaxing music, doing yoga, or meditating. Reading, listening to audiobooks, and meditating always does the trick for me.

5. Create a soothing sleep environment. That usually means a cool and dark room with comfortable pillows. If external sounds interfere with your ability to fall asleep, you can invest in a white noise machine.

These are the things that have worked for me.

How parents can develop their child’s spiritual side

One of the findings that surprised the researchers is that spirituality — having a sense of meaning and purpose in your life, as well as a connection to something larger than your personal experience — has a big influence on children’s happiness.

“In our other studies, we have shown that family income and the marital status of parents accounts for less than one per cent of children’s happiness,” says Mark Holder, an associate professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia and co-author of a recent study on spirituality in children.

Read more to find out how you can boost your child’s sprituality.

Low pain threshold? Here’s why

According to one of the researchers in a study, William Maixner, PhD, DDS, director of the Center for Neurosensory Disorders at the University of North Carolina, when the body is injured, it releases a flood of pain-relieving substances, notably beta endorphins, a natural opioid.

But many women’s bodies release fewer beta endorphins than men’s bodies do, Maixner says. Fewer natural painkillers can translate to more pain for women from the same injury — although, interestingly, women’s threshold for pain gets higher when they’re giving birth.

Read more to find out.

Talk your way to happiness

According to new research, happiness is directly related to the kind of conversation we have with our family and friends. The findings suggest that happy life is social rather than solitary, and conversationally deep rather than superficial.

I find this to be so true in my life too. I like to have deep meaningful conversations with people instead of superficial talk. It just makes you feel better spending time with people you can talk with.

Here is the article if you want to read more about it.

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness is not about suppressing thinking but recognizing that it is occurring and not elaborating it automatically and without choice. Mindfulness is the ability to cultivate awareness and the ability to retrieve attention from the future or past, or commentary about the present to bring it into intimate contact with what is happening right now. Read more here.

Learning to meditate saved author’s life

After 20 years in a high-pressure career, American writer, Kat Tansey’s active life was derailed by Chronic Fatigue Syndrome which reached its peak on a cold, grey, rainy morning in 1993, when she faced an important decision: should she stay to fight another day with suicidal depression or should she take her life? Using meditation, she was able to overcome her depression. She wrote a book about her story called Choosing to Be: Lessons in Living from a Feline Zen Master. This book is a true account of Kat’s journey from deep depression to emotional wellness, and her story will inspire all those caught on the hamster wheel of life and sufferers of stress and ‘must do’ syndrome.

Happiness increases after age 50

The study, based on a Gallup poll from 2008, finds that most people feel increasingly happy starting around age 50. In general, life satisfaction is high at age 18 but sinks until about 50. Then, it starts to climb again, increasing so steadily that most people feel better about their lives at 85 than they did at 18.

NY Times article

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