Happy people do things that contribute to their happiness and alleviate things that detract from it. (Duh!) It only makes sense to do as many (all) as you can, as each adds to your happiness. Right?
These are not optional practices, to "maybe" do. The only good choice you have is to do the happiness practices and not miss a single one.
The only way to happiness is through mastery of thoughts and behaviors. Some people may naturally have a happier conversation in their heads, so they have less to master. But there is no other legitimate choice if you want to live a very, deeply happy life.
Much of this you already know. But now it is time to underline its importance and to make the choice. (And it is essential you get these in place before adding any of the high promise programs that may or may not work.)
Just do this, from now for the rest of your life. These are unquestionable choices to make, with no wishy washy "maybes"!
MANAGING THOUGHTS/MOOD/POWER - ESSENTIAL
Meditate 12-15 minutes/day, 1 minuters - I tried less or to do 1 minute meditations only, but there is nothing more powerful than to harness and train the mind through the focussed practice of looking at thoughts, focusing, relaxing, and letting go. This rewires your brain, changing the ability in the left brain to automatically screen our nonsense or harmful thoughts (withou effort). Doing the 3 second to one minute "pauses" is, I think, also vital, to put back in the calmness and to destress so that all days are good days.
Start off the day "grounded" - Never start a day in a funk. Never lose your foundation of strength. Do the morning grounding exercises for 15 minutes or as much as is needed, so that you'll go into your day being alive and powerfully capable - it transforms the lives of those who do it. It also cultivates the essential of happiness: Optimism. It might not appear to be directly causative, but it, indeed, is.
Expressing and cultivating gratitude and appreciation - The "doing" of this is relatively simple, writing 3-5 things a day in your journal that you appreciate about the day and/or are grateful for, plus doing the overall gratitude list. Seems like it wouldn't be so effective, but science proves it to be one of the most effective of all things you can do.
Use The Pause. (A pause actually engages the brain; can also be used to energize.)
KEEPING HOMEOSTASIS SO THE BODY OPERATES OPTIMALLY
Eliminate refined flour/products and sugars - So potent in having one's energy and health in excellent shape. (Adding in natural foods, lots of veggies, will have you feeling satisfied, healthy, and not having the ups and downs in energy.)
Exercise four times more than 30 minutes - Energy, feeling good during the day, actual endorphins - makes for a better day and a better life. This is a practice you'll do without fail, even if you must tone it down to a zombie paced time of moving and no matter how "bad" you feel. It is an essential ingredient.
A full night's rest and napping during tiredness - Proven to be the key factor in feeling good during the day and functioning well - and it lowers the tendency to overeat. Learn whatever you need to sleep fully and deeply and long enough. And take at least one refreshing 20 minute nap each day (see the Napping page).
MANAGING THE REST OF LIFE
Plan daily, weekly - Make sure there is no day and no week where you haven't decided ahead of time how you will spend the units (time) available to you. Just do it. (Doing quarterly, yearly, and long term plans are also practices that are powerful.) If you don't do this, life will pass and you'll wonder where it all went. I would rather have a thriving, flourishin, rich life.
THE NON-PRACTICES - TAKING AWAY WHAT TAKES AWAY
In terms of learning and projects to take on, these are the key ones that will take away all the wasted energy and stress that you incur by bad practices of thinking.
Never blame - Learn not to do this, period. It is not a necessary part of human behavior and is, in fact, destructive.
Devote the time to eliminate all non-natural fears (99+% of all fears) - Why waste your time recycling fears (expressed in reactive emotions, such as anger, displeasure, etc.) over and over and over - eliminate them as early as possible.
STOPPING AIMING FOR WHAT DOESN'T WORK
The following is not a "practice" but more of a "necessary" to do that leads to a higher base for living life.
It is simply to study and determine for yourself what actually will make you happy instead of buying into the goals and practices that "seem to" lead one to happiness, but either don't do that and/or cause harm in the long term.
Just this one learning will have you knowing what to go for in life, and will automatically change your life (even if you don't intentionally focus on it).
TAKING AWAY THE UNCERTAINTY AND BACK AND FORTH
Although listed as a daily practice, the putting together of a the notebook for grounding reminders will cause you to put together an essential strong foundation from which to operate your life from. That will save alot of feeling wobbly, uncertain, not knowing what to do, unnecessary angst, etc. and etc. and etc. You will think more strongly, feel more powerful, and not create so many preposterous fears.