Ten Ways to Instantly Feel Better

Our top feel-good tips and how to achieve them.

Jane Marion - January 2018

Ten Ways to Instantly Feel Better

Our top feel-good tips and how to achieve them.

Jane Marion - January 2018

Most people know that exercising is an instant mood-booster (hello, endorphins!), but there are plenty of other ways to join the Happiness Club. And while Norway tops the list of happiest countries on Earth (and, sadly, the U.S. fell from No. 13 to 14), according to the 2017 World Happiness Report (yes, there is such a thing), there’s no need for despair. You can still find happiness here at home. Here are our top feel-good tips and how to achieve them. Illustrations by Danielle Dernoga.


Adopt a Pet
The Centers for Disease Control lists many benefits of having a pet, including decreases in blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and feelings of loneliness and increased opportunities for exercise and socialization. Adopt at: Maryland SPCA.


Take a Hike 
While some hardcore calorie busters might not consider gentle walking exercise, the experts do. Thirty minutes a day of daily walking improves circulation, lowers weight, and loosens stiff joints. Go into the woods at: Patapsco Valley State Park.

Read a Book
Think of reading as medication for the mind. Go deep with Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet, or read Gwendy’s Button Box, the latest page-turning tome by Stephen King and Richard Chizmar. Buy it: The Ivy Bookshop.

Get a Massage
Reach out—and have someone touch you. Getting a massage isn't just good for stress, as the human touch can also reduce blood pressure and cortisol. Book it: Ojas Wellness Center.

Beauty is more than skin deep. Altruism is actually good for your health, so say Harvard researchers, who attribute volunteerism to lower blood pressure and longer lifespans. Volunteer at: Our Daily Bread.


Bake Like a Pro 
Researchers say there’s a link between creative expression and well-being. Activities such as baking can reap the same benefits as meditation. Take a class: Charm City Cakes.


Take a Bath  
For soft, supple skin and a bit of luxury, consider a bath with a chemical-free, homemade bar of vegan soap. Buy it: Sarah & June Handmade Soaps.

You May Also Like

Health & Wellness

Born This Way

Faced with discrimination and sometimes outright hostility, the Maryland transgender community perserveres, pioneering civil rights breakthroughs.

Health & Wellness

The Pressure To Be Perfect

Eating disorders are on the rise–here's why.

Health & Wellness

What It Feels Like

Essays on losing weight, giving birth, and other body-owning experiences.

Charmed Life

Fit File: ZenLife Yoga Boutique & Juice Bar

Get to know Dena Leibowitz of Kenilworth's ZenLife Yoga Boutique & Juice Bar

Health & Wellness

Gift Guide 2017

This holiday season, it’s key to acknowledge the importance of both self-care and taking care of one another.

Food & Drink

Old Sage

Homespun medicines are just what the doctor ordered.

Doctor Finder

Connect With Us

Most Read

Walters Curator Says Google Arts App is Good Start But Not Perfect: The museum has more than 1,400 works represented in the app's collection.

Former Terp Makes Catch For the Ages: Wide receiver Stefon Diggs shocks the world.

The Rowhouse Grille Hosts LLS Fundraiser Honoring Alex Wroblewski: The 41-year-old Locust Point resident was fatally shot outside of Royal Farms in November.

Ten Incredibly Easy Ways to Be More Active in 2018: Get creative with walking meetings, workout buddies, and local sports leagues.

Here’s What We’d Like to See in the New Penn Station: Penn Station Partners will be refreshing the century-old train station.