* REACH OUT Increasing your connected-ness is a surefire way to combat loneliness, a prime cause of depression. Plus, socialising with people you like makes you feel great – and keeps you happier over time.
* LOOK FORWARD, NOT BACK Research shows that your background, including what your parents are like or whether you were a moody child, doesn’t necessarily predict your adult happiness. So let go of those grudges, whether from a decade ago or yesterday.
* LAUGH IT OFF Next time you get bad news, retell the story to a trusted friend, but lighten up. Humour makes the pain a little more manageable.
* THINK ACTIVELY Try mulling over a problem while doing something you love, whether knitting or taking a run. People who cope by engaging in productive activities are better able to resolve conflicts and, as a result, are happier.
* BREAK A SWEAT Regular exercise, even a jog around the block a few times a week, is a mjor happiness helper.