One cannot explore the nature and cultivation of happiness without encountering mindfulness, a term and practice stemming from Buddhist philosophy. It could be defined as conscious and non-judgmental awareness.
The idea of mindfulness is to be fully present in every moment of everyday life; if you're washing the dishes for example, wash the dishes without multi-tasking or thinking about other things, focus entirely on what you are doing. Mindfulness can also be cultivated through the practice of meditation.
Focus and be fully present to what you are doing at any given moment. Image courtesy of marin/freedigitalphotos.net
Mindfulness is not some hippy-dippy notion, it has been scientifically researched and proven to reduce stress, improve mood, alleviate pain, increase connection with others, enhane emotional wellbeing, calm the mind, improve focus and concentration, and of course, it can make people happier.
Like anything new that one tries, one simply has to practice consistently for it to become the norm, and to reap the benefits. For information, articles, and meditations on mindfulness, check out the mindful.org website.