Think your life could be more fun?  Think you could feel better than you usually do?  Here are three tested ways to get more out of life.
The Antidote to Stress
Stuff happens – no matter how much time you spend worrying about what could go wrong.  While you may not get any benefit out of worrying, you can get a lot from the opposite emotion.  That’s gratitude.
The health benefits work by enhancing your immune function.  That’s what wards off illness and helps you heal from injuries.  Gratitude has also been found to fight depression. Fortunately, we get dozens of chances to embrace gratitude from beautiful sunsets to shade trees on hot days to bird song.
To be grateful, it helps to slow down every now and then.  Know someone who takes a break to watch the sunset just for a few minutes?  It’s a free invitation to marvel at a work of art.  And, it’s an easy way to stop thinking about deadlines.
Why Connection Is Good for You
You’ve probably heard the advice “To stop feeling depressed, do something kind for someone.” That works because our mind and body don’t just respond to things that happen to us.  We have what scientists call mirror neurons.
Our brains extrapolate what others feel and use the input to shape how we experience life.  For instance, if you see kindness, your immune function gets stronger.
Four Things Your Body Craves
Even though these are pretty obvious, it’s easy to overlook them.  They’re some things you literally can’t live without, and when you get the right amount, it’s so much easier to keep your body working hard to you.
One is staying hydrated with pure water.  While green tea is a good substitute, some liquids really aren’t.  Last year, we saw research link drinking soda – diet or not – with increased risk for stroke.
Your body also craves fresh, whole fruits and vegetables, along with daily exercise just to run properly.  And, we’re not just talking about preventing disease.  Supporting your body with the right fuel also helps fight depression and memory loss.
Sleep is another thing your mind and body can’t replace.  Did you realize a lack of sleep has been associated with cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes, and obesity?

Wiley Long is founder and president of Medigap Advisors, and is passionate about helping people navigate the confusing waters of Medicare. He is the author of The Medicare Playbook: Designing Your Successful Health Coverage Strategy, a clear and simple explanation so you can make the most of your Medicare coverage.