KEY TO LAST­ING HAP­PI­NESS

Put a lit­tle more ‘happy’ into your Happy New Year with help from Life­shape Clinic di­eti­tian Ni­cola Moore

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Start by look­ing within, be mind­ful, and savour mo­ments,” says Ni­cola. “No­tice the vi­brancy of the colours as you chop veg­eta­bles for din­ner or ad­mire a beau­ti­ful sun­set. While you are busy be­ing mind­ful, you might be­gin to feel ap­pre­cia­tive or grate­ful.”

The more you give, the more your life sat­is­fac­tion and sense of pur­pose will in­crease.

“Be gen­er­ous and em­pa­thetic to­wards oth­ers,” says Ni­cola. “This builds so­cial con­nec­tion. The more so­cially con­nected we are, the hap­pier we feel.”

The ‘feel–good’ fac­tor that comes from a mod­er­ate-ef­fort ex­er­cise ses­sion lasts well be­yond the ses­sion time.

“This means there’s po­ten­tial to achieve a whole day of bliss for less than an hour of ef­fort,” says Ni­cola. “I don’t know about you, but in my book that’s an ex­cel­lent re­turn on in­vest­ment! Look for walk­ing groups, yoga or Pi­lates in parks, out­door pools or bike to work.”

If we feel a need for ‘com­fort’, we may seek out foods that are highly pro­cessed and high in fat and su­gar. While this kind of eat­ing can re­duce un­com­fort­able emo­tions in the short term, the joy doesn’t usu­ally ex­tend be­yond the first few mouth­fuls.

“Veg­eta­bles, legumes, grains, nuts, salmon, and olive oil sup­port a glass–half–full ap­proach to life,” says Ni­cola.

“The gut and the brain are con­nected when it comes to mood, so think about in­clud­ing onions, leeks, as­para­gus, gar­lic, fer­mented foods, and yo­ghurt in your meals which con­tain pre­bi­otics, pro­bi­otics and fi­bre to main­tain a healthy gut mi­cro­biome.”

Don’t be dis­heart­ened if you’re not feel­ing the vibe at day one.

Re­search sug­gests last­ing hap­pi­ness isn’t borne out of a one-off event.

It’s about be­ing con­sis­tent with be­hav­iours that be­come habits and help us to feel con­tent.

Set re­al­is­tic goals and, soon enough, savour­ing the sun­rise will be­come your ‘hap­pier’ choice!

For more de­tails con­tact Life­shape Clinic on 1800 567 348 or via www.life­shape.com.au

EVEN A SMALL AMOUNT OF EX­ER­CISE WILL HAVE YOU FEEL­ING GREAT

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