Ask yourself, what are your Real Simple Joys?

A daily walk in the park. Spending time with loved ones. Challenging yourself with work and hobbies. Striving to find your true purpose. All these things and more can bring joy to everyday Australians. So what makes you happy?

Digging into how we find joy can actually be helpful in living a better life. If you’d like to boost your overall wellbeing and start to seek out new ways to be happy, take our fun quiz about joy.

Finding joy despite the pandemic: What the data tells us

Many of us didn’t expect the pandemic to drag on for so long, and it’s no wonder that it’s affecting our wellbeing and mental health. But despite the challenges of lockdowns, school closures and high infection rates, Australians are shifting their priorities to see the ‘silver lining’ of the pandemic.

Research from Real Insurance’s Real Simple Joys show that we are finding joy in each other and in the smaller things. When asked about how their family’s attitudes and priorities have shifted since the pandemic, more than two in three (67%) said they have “more gratitude for the simple joys in life”. Respondents also had “more gratitude for each other” (63%), “more appreciation of shared simple joys in life” (58%) and “more joy from time spent with family or friends over material things” (51%).

Here are some questions that can help you to start thinking about what truly brings you joy.

What makes you the happiest?

Everyone finds joy in different things – that’s part of what makes you you. So which of the following makes you the happiest?

  • Being optimistic: Always looking for the positives in life and turning setbacks into opportunities for growth.
  • Having leisure time: Whether that’s spending some restorative ‘me-time’ at the beach or just sitting back and enjoying a movie with someone you care about, you live for your moments of leisure.
  • Having a solid support system: You live for your family and friends, and spending time with them is your central source of happiness.
  • Finding purpose: You want to leave a mark on this world and find out what you are truly meant to achieve in this life. Finding your own unique purpose is what drives you and brings you joy.

What type are you? Are you an:

  • Optimist: No matter what happens in your daily life, you are determined to make the best of it. That doesn’t mean you don’t get discouraged from time to time, but overall you have goals and you are intent on achieving them – and you know that things will work out in the end.
  • Pessimist: You’re a glass-is-half-empty type of person. That doesn’t mean you are always negative, but neither do you convince yourself that you can achieve the impossible. Instead, you have realistic goals and always do your best to set yourself up to avoid failure.

How do you like to have fun?

Imagine you’ve got a full day to yourself – you can do anything you like. Do you:

  • Head to the beach for some R&R in the sun?
  • Curl up under a blanket and read a good book or play video games?
  • Treat yourself to some retail therapy?
  • Enjoy a physical activity like sport or running?
  • Explore your artistic side with painting or music?

The bottom line? Whatever your hobbies are, it’s important to make time for them.

Which of these do you define as finding ‘purpose’?

Maybe you’ve already found it or perhaps you are still looking for your purpose. There is no ‘right’ option – it’s completely up to you. You may define your purpose as:

  • Being able to make an impact through your current work.
  • Looking for a new job that will help you carry out your purpose every day.
  • Becoming a volunteer – your purpose is all about helping others find theirs.
  • Being part of a club or community that shares a common purpose.
  • Raising a family and imbuing in them strong, purposeful goals.

How much do you focus on your health?

Your overall health is inextricably linked to your levels of happiness. In fact, researchers found that for people with a family history of heart disease, there was a 30% reduction in heart issues for those who had a positive wellbeing – such as; optimism, happiness, life satisfaction and vitality.

So, which do you focus on more?

  • Physical health: Staying fit, exercising regularly and eating well.
  • Mental health: Looking after yourself and trying to maintain a positive outlook on life.
  • Social health: Staying in touch with friends and family to help build a sense of togetherness.

Make sure you are tending to these different types of ‘health’ frequently. After all, even the most physically healthy person on the planet can be unhappy if they don’t look after their mental and social health.

Tips to make the most out of each day

Finding joy in lots of different places doesn’t always come easy. Rather than being like a switch you can easily turn on, knowing what makes you happy may take a little trial and error. To help bring more joy into your life, here are some suggestions:

  • Reach out to an old friend: If it’s been a while since you connected with friends, take the plunge and reach out to them. It’s easy to make excuses in this digital-focused world, but you might be surprised by how appreciative they are by you making the first move to reconnect.
  • Write down a ‘joy list’: Take some time to think about what actually makes you happy. Write them down and set goals for how you can do one of those things every week, or maybe even every day.
  • Be a giver: There’s science behind the idea that giving actually makes us happier. So, whether it’s for a birthday, the holiday season or simply for no reason at all – make a habit out of giving. And it doesn’t have to be money; giving someone your time or making them their favourite meal can be just as special.
  • Take the time to exercise: Not keen on a 10km run or an hour on your bike? No problem. Even a 10-minute walk around your block or through the park can do wonders for your mental health – and maybe even bring a little unexpected joy.

While you work towards bringing more joy to your life, help make sure your loved ones are protected with Real Life Insurance

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