A happier life could be as close as eight steps away.
1. Learn something new, even if it's stressful: Mastering a new skill means more stress now but more happiness later.
2. Make friends with people who live near you: The sweet spot is a happy friend who lives a mile away.
3. Embrace opposing feelings at the same time: Cheerful + Downcast = Happy. When things make you sad, be happy that you are trying to work through them.
4. Invest in good counseling: Psychologist Chris Boyce believes that therapy is 32 times more effective than cash. $1,300 worth of therapy equaled the benefit of getting a $40,000 raise.
5. Say "no" to almost everything. According to Warren Buffett, "The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say no to almost everything."
6. Prepare for the worst; hope for the best. Samurai warriors had two essential elements to performing at their best: They trained extremely hard, and they prepared for the worst.
7. Give up your favorite things: Just for a day or two, not forever. It teaches you to not take things for granted.
8. Celebrate your strengths; and recognize your weaknesses: Give yourself permission to be yourself. Focus on developing your talents and don’t force yourself into places you don’t belong.