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The Importance of Having a Happier Place of Your Own

Having a Happier place with dog and woman in the mountains

Having a Happier Place of your own gives you an escape from everyday demands, stress and pressures. You’ll return feeling more centered, refreshed and energized. Isn’t it time you declared YOUR Happier Place?

Let’s Get Happier

Experiencing happiness should not be a luxury, but is something we all deserve. Yet so many people don’t take the time or focus on feeling happier. People go to work to make money, to the grocery store to buy food, to the gym to be physically fit, to the kitchen to cook etc. It’s kind of a no brainer: go to your Happier Place to feel happier.

When you have defined an easily accessible location (or easily achievable activity) where you feel joy and comfort, it will help you make the time and truly focus on doing something for just yourself that will spread happiness throughout your days.

Think of visiting your Happier Place as a mini vacation for your mind, body, and soul.

Call it your natural anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication.

Consider it your more-fun anger management therapy.

Whatever you call it: take responsibility for your well-being and make time for self-care by going to your Happier Place.

Cache la Poudre River in Gateway Natural Area, Colorado.
Cache la Poudre River in Gateway Natural Area, Colorado.

Having a Happier Place vs. a Happy Place

Let’s get one thing out of the way: why Happier Place, and not the more common term Happy PlaceThere are two different ways of looking at it. Just choose the one that works better for you.

  • “Happier” is even better than just “happy” – and definitely much better than meh.
  • You can’t always be “happy”, but you can definitely always be a little bit “happier”.

Read more about the distinction in this article: Do More of What Makes You Happier! (Seriously Do!)

Happier Place Definitions

There are several definitions and then the magic of combining them.

  • Mental image of a place which a person associates with happiness or peace-of-mind – visualized in order to reduce stress, calm down, and reach a happier state of mind.
  • Physical location where a person feels happier and safe. This can be a specific location (e.g., my backyard) or a general category (e.g., at the beach).
  • An activity that allows a person to feel joy and forget worries (e.g., bike riding).

A great combination is to have a physical place that you can visit in person when convenient and then retrieve as a mental image in times of stress or anxiety. Another combination would be: a certain activity in a specific location (e.g., boating on Horsetooth Reservoir).

Whiskey Dog boating on Horsetooth Reservoir, Colorado.
Whiskey Dog boating on Horsetooth Reservoir, Colorado.

Find Your Own Happier Place

To keep it simple and efficient, we’ll focus on “physical locations” in this section. The same aspects apply to activities. 

An important point when choosing a Happier Place location: It should be easily accessible and realistic. Otherwise, it’s just a dream vacation, a bucket list item or fantasy world that might cause sadness if it remains out of reach.

No, the location doesn’t have to be in the outdoors!

Yes, of course, you can have more than one Happier Place!

Take the time to recall locations you’ve been to that match any (not necessarily all) of these points:

  • Somewhere you feel comfortable. For most people this would also mean “to feel safe” – but let’s not discount “adrenalin junkies.”
  • Being there brought you joy, smiles, a lightness of being, a sense of freedom, lack of worries… or any other feelings you associate with happiness.
  • Even just thinking about the place brings a smile to your face or floods you with a sense of contentment or joy.
  • Something positive and meaningful happened there in the past.
  • Where you enjoyed the smells, sounds or visuals of the environment.
  • A location that keeps coming to your mind – and you wish you could return to.
  • You can reach the location on your own.
  • It’s possible for you to be alone there.

Ask people who know you well where they have seen you be happier or what makes your face light up when you talk about it.

Find out where other people like to escape to. But don’t “steal” someone’s place by taking over. Just let someone else’s Happier Place inspire you to find your own.

Sunset at Clearwater Beach, Florida. Happier Place
Sunset at Clearwater Beach, Florida.

How to Get the Most out of Your Happier Place

Just thinking about where you might be or have been happier, probably made you feel pretty good, right? Brought back some good memories? Made you feel like you took some time to just think about what makes you feel good? That’s step one.

Next, declare your Happier Place. More details about the importance of acknowledging your place in the next section.

Obviously, just having a Happier Place isn’t enough. You should also actually visit this location or do your happier activity whenever you have the time or really need an escape.

Celebrate “Me-Time” by marking your calendar after you’ve spent time in your Happier Place. Just like the idea of the Fun-Was-Had Calendar (vs. a To-Do List), it’ll help you check if you’re allowing yourself focused happiness time.

Notice that you’re “always too busy” to make time for a little happiness escape? Then go ahead and schedule “Happier Place Time” in your calendar or on your to-do list. Oh, and then actually go there! 

Bring whatever you might need or want with you, e.g., food, drinks, book, sketchpad, sarong, etc. That idea is what our “make your happy place better” products are based on and one of the reasons we launched in the first place. But it also follows the simple concept of having what you need so you can stay content longer.

Allow yourself some true downtime and turn off your phone. Too much? Then at least turn off the ringer and notifications.

Tell your people (spouse, kids, demanding dog etc.) that you’re taking this time for yourself and that’ll you be back later to engage – but to please leave you alone for this time. Thank them now; they’ll thank you later when you return feeling great.

Get creative and take your Happier Place with you when you leave. Take a picture or make a drawing or painting of the actual place and keep your image easily accessible (on your phone, computer, wallet, etc.) to give yourself a quick happier fix. Maybe there’s a rock or seashell you can take from the place?

Contemplate what aspects of the location or activity make you happier and use that information. Is there any way you can translate those aspects to other places or actions? Can you integrate any of them into your everyday life?

Turn the actual location or activity into the classic “happy place mental image” that you can conjure up anytime you feel stressed, worried or sad.

While first and foremost the Happier Place should be just for you (where you take a break from all and everything), there’s something to be said for sharing it with someone who is special to you. Shared positive experiences strengthen relationships. You’re doing something kind for someone else by taking them somewhere beautiful and personally meaningful to you. You’ll probably inspire that person to seek out their own place of joy and comfort. So on occasion: bring a friend.

Two women are having a Happier Place in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, NY
Sharing a Happier Place in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, NY.

Declare Your Happier Place

Already simply choosing and claiming a “place of your own” that makes you happier is a very important step.

It’s an opportunity for you to consciously focus in on what YOU want and need. This is an important aspect of self-care, which Maria Baratta Ph.D., defines in Psychology Today as “the mindful taking time to pay attention to you, not in a narcissistic way, but in a way that ensures that you are being cared for by you.”

You do so much for other beings (partners, family, pets) and things (make money, keep a clean house, obey laws etc.). You deserve a place and time for just you where you can get away from all the demands and pressures. Claiming such a place affirms first and foremost to yourself that you deserve having a Happier Place of your very own. Celebrate your self-worth! Treat yo self!

If you want, you can also tell others about your Happier Place. It’s a fun way to express yourself and be proud of who you are, what you do and what makes you happier.

Acknowledging a beautiful place of your own is a rewarding act of mindfulness. First, it can bring awareness to your own needs, desires, and self-worth. Then, it can lead to you celebrating what makes this place or activity so special. For a deeper and longer-lasting experience, you might enjoy writing about it and what it means to you.

You can also combine this mindfulness with focusing on gratitude for this time and place. Being in the moment and experiencing gratitude are probably the core principles of finding happiness. Read more in our article Secret to Happiness: the Gratitude Moment.

Horsetooth Reservoir in Ft. Collins, Colorado. Happier Place
Horsetooth Reservoir in Ft. Collins, Colorado.

To help you declare your Happier Place, we currently sell a weather-resistant “I’m in my happier place.” sticker. Of course, we advise you against sticking it anywhere you don’t have permission to. But it works great on items that you take to your Happier Place, like water bottles, coolers, notebooks, kayaks, beach chair, etc. As new products with that slogan become available, we’ll aim to list them right here:

Save this image to Pinterest so you can find this post again easily and share it with others.

The Importance of Having a #HappierPlace of Your Own - and how to find it, declare it and get the most out of it! #happiness #selfcare

Let’s inspire each other!

Leave a comment below: Tell us about your Happier Place – no matter if it’s an actual location, an activity or a mental image of either.

35 thoughts on “The Importance of Having a Happier Place of Your Own

  1. For me a place to escape is very important for my well-being. I always go to the beach and watch sunset. 🙂

  2. Thank you for your kind comment, Nicol. I’m so glad you liked the post. Sounds like we generally have the same Happier Place. After over a dozen years of living in Brooklyn and realizing how much better I felt on nature excursions, I actually moved out of the city for now, which has made it easier to be in nature a few times a week. But of course, now I miss the city 😉

  3. such a beautiful post! loved reading it and could relate to it so much. my happier place is to get out of the city and to just explore nature, see beautiful scenery etc. it always calms my mind and makes me feel better no matter how bad the situation is

  4. Those are some beautiful places to disconnect! Sometimes just having a bath is enough for me to have my own time to think…but I would love a place to go to consistently (just a little harder with kids haha)

    1. Thank you, Brit! Having a bath sounds like the wonderful (indoor) Happier Place! I remember that a friend of mine, when her children were smaller, would lock herself in the bathroom just to read a book for a few minutes. That was her Happier Place to sneak off to with some consistency. Good luck finding your quick get-away.

  5. I love the term “happier place” vs “happy place!” What a great tweak of expectations!

    1. Awesome comment, Marcie! I love your expression “great tweak of expectations”. It’s a great way of pinpointing the difference between “happy place” vs. “happier place”. Will use it in the future to explain the difference. Thank you so much!

  6. I should really work on this. Heck I don’t even have a happy place. I have been a truly depressed person. Thanks for this inspiring talk.

    1. Oh Kweni, I hope you’re not truly a depressed person. Because then maybe you’ll need more than inspiring talks and following through on some inspiration. But I know you’ve done fun and adventurous outdoor things. So I sincerely hope that focusing more on doing things that make you happier and spending time in a happier place will help. And a Happier Place doesn’t necessarily mean “more than happy” – it can also mean “I might never be completely happy, but I can always be just a little bit happier”.

  7. Wow Luci, this was so inspiring. I love had you compared happiness place to going to work or school it’s just another thing g that needs to be done. Beautifully written! I would love to connect more with you, it seems we have a lot in common!!

    1. Hi Lauren! Thank you for your comment. Wonderful to see that the little detail spoke to you. I was hoping it would spark some thought for the reader of how important “going to” a Happier Place can/should be.
      Yes, let’s definitely connect more. Just followed you on Instagram and Pinterest via Happier Place. You can reach me also directly via the “Contact Us” link at the bottom of this page.
      xx Luci

  8. Love this post! Everyone does need a happy place, I know I found mine!

    1. Thank you so much! I’m glad you did!

  9. I definitely agree with this. Having a happier place of your own is very important for your mental health. I am always surrounded by family, but I make it a priority to have that alone time as well.

    1. Thank you for your comment, Llili! I think it can be quite challenging to “request” alone time in your Happier Place. So it’s very inspiring that you can make it a priority.

  10. Great idea! A happier place, yeah I should definitely work myself to get which place I can call that. I am sure I will like the result

    1. I bet you would, as well! Good luck and enjoy the search!

  11. Thanks for your inspiring contributions to the world. Let us all claim our happy place.

    1. That’s a very kind thing to say. Thank you. And yes, let’s!

  12. This is a great post to ponder.We all need a happier place on our own. This is such an enlightening post and it shows how we are being formed in our daily living.

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Preet. Glad to have provided something to ponder.

  13. self care is so important! i love the photos with you and your dog! so cute

    1. Aw, thanks, Lexi. Whiskey Dog makes every photo better – and makes most places happier 🙂

  14. Hey there! This is honestly wonderful, and I COULDN’T agree more! There are certain parts of the day wherein we need a brief escape, from all the hustle and bustle. Having your very own peacefully happier place is the perfect way to do it

    1. Hey Hazl! Thrilled to see you feel the same way about those brief escapes into your Happier Place. Thank you for your comment!

  15. Such an enlightening post! I would have to find my “happier” place now. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you very much, Linh! I hope you’re out and about now finding your very own Happier Place 🙂

  16. Beautifully described ! I truly believe in this ideology and have experienced that we are happiest when we are contributing at some level to another’s needs. It is important to connect with ourselves, but it is in these moments of silence that I have found some wise answers 🙂

    1. Beautifully said, Aditya! Thank you for adding your inspiring thoughts. I agree with you on all three points about contributing to others, connecting to ourselves and the wise answers found during moments of silence.

  17. I love this post! I believe I have a few Happier places, and its wonderful to be able to go to get away from it all 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Ruth! Love reading that you have several Happier Places. Hope you get to visit at least one this week!

  18. I like this whole concept 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    1. That’s great. Thanks!

  19. Very meaningful post…. We sometimes forget to take care of ourselves in Taking care of others, so we really need some space for ourselves to live a happier life…

    1. Thank you very much for your thoughtful comment, Rumi. It feels great when you see someone else gets what you’re trying to express.

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