How to improve the quality of your life immediately

BarkerAccording to Eric Barker, there are ten initiatives that scientific research shows can help improve your life. To read the complete blog post, learn more about him, and sign up for free alerts, please click here.

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Here are the first four of ten initiatives:

Get out in nature

You probably seriously underestimate how important this is. (Actually, there’s research that says you do.) Being in nature reduces stress, makes you more creative, improves your memory and may even make you a better person.

Exercise

We all know how important this is, but few people do it consistently. Other than health benefits too numerous to mention, exercise makes you smarter, happier, improves sleep, increases libido and makes you feel better about your body. A Harvard study that has tracked a group of men for more than 70 years identified it as one of the secrets to a good life.

Spend time with friends and family

Harvard happiness expert Daniel Gilbert identified this as one of the biggest sources of happiness in our lives. Relationships are worth more than you think (approximately an extra $131,232 a year.) Not feeling socially connected can make you stupider and kill you. Loneliness can lead to heart attack, stroke and diabetes. The longest lived people on the planet all place a strong emphasis on social engagement and good relationships are more important to a long life than even exercise. Friends are key to improving your life. Share good news and enthusiastically respond when others share good news with you to improve your relationships. Want to instantly be happier? Do something kind for them.

Express gratitude

o It will make you happier.
o It will improve your relationships.
o It can make you a better person.
o It can make life better for everyone around you.

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“Hi. I’m Eric, the guy behind the blog. This site brings you science-based answers and expert insight on how to be awesome at life. It’s been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Wired Magazine and Time Magazine.”

The story behind the URL name, “Barking Up the Wrong Tree,” is here. You can email me here.

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