Today is International Happiness Day! On Day 2 of Samoa’s nationwide lockdown to curb the community spread of Covid-19, the Samoa Tourism Authority remind us how infectious happiness is with a short video to highlight the Samoan trademark smile.
International Day of Happiness also referred to as World Happiness Day – is celebrated every year around the world, on the 20th of March. World Happiness Day was first celebrated by the UN and its member countries in 2012. It aims to spread the message that the progress of a nation should be about increasing human happiness and wellbeing, and not just growth of the economy.
This year’s International Happiness Day theme is Keep Calm, Stay Wise and Be Kind. “For one to achieve happiness and satisfaction in their life it is important for them to keep cool and calm in every possible situation,” the statement reads.
What an appropriate theme for us all as Samoa moves to contain our first community transmissions of Covid-19 since the global pandemic outbreak over two years ago.
Happiness impacts our health. The Bible tells us in Proverbs 17:22 that a cheerful heart is good medicine but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Nehemiah 8:10 says The joy of the Lord is our strength. Happiness is linked to having a purpose-filled life and Jesus said he came so that we may have life and have it more abundantly.
Medical journals have long established that happiness lowers your risk for cardiovascular disease, lowers your blood pressure, enables better sleep, improves your diet, and motives you to maintain a normal body weight through regular exercise.
Happiness isn’t a given
The World Health Organization estimates that as many as 300 million people are currently living with depression, while countless more are facing an undiagnosed lack of happiness in their lives. With mounting pressure to succeed in a fast-paced, globalised society, many aren’t taking their well-being seriously, which can have serious effects on an individual as well as the people around them.
Smiles are healthy
There have been several studies linking something as simple as smiling to improved mood, less stress, and greater joy. These reactions lead to more smiling, creating a positive cycle.
Studies have found that improving the mood of others around you may be as simple as improving your own mood. There’s a good chance that smiling at someone will trigger them to smile back, even if they don’t feel like it 😀
With social media playing such a huge part in people’s lives today, it is encouraging to see that although there is much negative content, researchers have found that positive, happy and funny posts are shared far more than negative ones.
So on World Happiness Day, share an encouraging scripture or an image or post that will bring cheer into the hearts of others.
And remember, everyone has their own definition of happiness, or things that make them happy. Happiness is about feeling content and not having to fake your feelings, so whatever makes you happy, you do you! Being internally happy is key to being satisfied with your surroundings, so challenge yourself to cherish the little things, and be grateful for everything in that moment.
The Apostle Paul said, Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say, rejoice!