Get your new year off to a light-hearted start by taking control of your happiness. Even if you’re not little Susie Sunshine, researchers say at least 40 percent of your capacity for joy is within your control. They also report that the happiest people share certain happy habits. Consider this advice:
1. Try something new. Happy people indulge their curiosities and explore new experiences — even if it means risking a little anxiety, studies show. Break out of your routine, and choose three new things to get excited about in the new year. Zip-lining, skiing or fishing anyone?
2. Let it slide. Being hypersensitive to minor negative behavior — a sarcastic remark, an annoying glance — is linked to depression. Does it really matter if a salesperson rolls her eyes at you? Of course not. Hum a happy tune, like your theme song (another key to a good mood), and move on.
3. Get the happiness app. It will help you think positive thoughts. Now available in an updated version, the Moodkit ($4.99) uses the principles of cognitive therapy to help you track your moods and adjust your thinking when you’re slipping into a negative zone. It’s like having a little therapist in your pocket.