Well, I’ve been working my happiness experiments for more than a year, and I’ve come a long way.
What have I learned?
Both a lot and nothing at all. Some experiments were incredibly effective, others were completely ineffective – which was an education in itself.
Now that I’m on my 38th happiness experiment, which ones have stuck out for me? Well, here are a few that were particularly memorable.
The Health Benefits of White Wine on Sleep: Sometimes, you unintentionally discover something awesome. This experiment was inspired by a study I read that talked about red wine improving sleep. I decided to try white wine since I prefer it, and the results were still effective. Now, I know that the occasional glass of wine at night will help me sleep incredibly well.
Clutter Busting: I’ve always heard that a cleaner house makes for happier people, and that physical clutter weighs down on your energy. I didn’t believe it until I started really clearing out my own clutter. Once I started moving out clutter I found that I couldn’t wait to keep cleaning!
Eating Paleo: This was an incredibly effective experiment, but also the first experiment that I consider myself to have failed on. When I read up on the timeline for going on the paleo diet aferwards, I found out that my discomforts were not uncommon for people going onto the paleo diet. I might go and try this again in 2013 – I can’t deny how much weight I lost in the first few days, but the stress and discomfort were significant. Maybe I should take a long holiday so I don’t have to go through carb withdrawal at work!
And the most effective experiment of all, the Happy Thoughts List: I read an article about adding gratitude to your life and how it can make you a happier person. I didn’t walk into the experiment thinking it would work. Now it’s one of the few experiments I stick with and still make part of my regular life.
I’ve learned a lot in this last year. I hope by my documenting my experiments, you’ve had the chance to learn from my experiences as well. Hopefully I’ve given you a few good ideas and saved you from making many of my mistakes.