the ultimate happy brain routine to improve your baseline happiness

3 mins
25 Jul 2023
Patrick from Spongebob big brain

From sleep and exercise to cooking and hanging out with friends, here’s how to maintain your baseline happiness

words Sophie Lou Wilson

We all have a baseline level of happiness. This refers to our typical feelings of happiness and wellbeing in absence of any specific influence or event. It’s how you feel day to day when nothing spectacularly good or bad happens.

Some people are lucky enough to have a naturally higher baseline than others. This is mostly down to genetic factors, but also personality traits like optimism or extroversion. For most people, however, maintaining a level of baseline happiness takes work.

The good news is that our baseline is not set in stone. While some people might be more predisposed to anxiety and depression, research shows that a large part of our baseline happiness comes down to our daily actions rather than external circumstances. So, if you want to improve your baseline happiness in the long term, it’s less about getting that promotion or getting together with your crush and more about the little things you can do each day to feel a bit better overall.

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“A large part of our happiness comes down to our genes, but most people overestimate the role our life circumstances play in our happiness levels,” says Dr Maike Neuhaus, psychologist and founder of The Flourishing Doc. “Life circumstances play only a tiny role. A very large proportion of our happiness comes down to our daily actions. They start with the basics like having a healthy lifestyle, exercising and getting a good amount of sleep.

Evidence to suggest that you can change your baseline happiness in the long-term is limited, but Dr Neuhaus suggests that it might be possible over time. “We know about the concept of brain plasticity,” she says. “We know that we can constantly grow and learn and change. Genes determine vulnerabilities, but not actualities. There’s a lot we can do individually to raise our baseline everyday and my guess is that if you practise that over the long-term that will eventually lead to a raise in that baseline overall.”

Below, we’ve curated some tips and products for a happy brain routine that boosts your day to day baseline happiness, from exercise gear and sleep aids to wellness journals and social activities. Get ready to get happy.

get moving

Debutto Crop

Debutto Crop



We know you might not want to hear it again, but exercise is one of the best ways to boost your baseline happiness. It releases chemicals in your brain that make you feel good and it improves your sleep. This classic racer back crop top is all the workout motivation you need. It's lightweight and breathable with a naturally moisture wicking lining that makes it perfect for getting sweaty.

write it down

Guided Journal

Guided Journal

Note and Shine


If you switch some of the time you spend scrolling on your phone for writing in a journal then your brain will thank you. Note and Shine’s guided journal will help you manifest your dreams, create inner peace and cultivate a positive energy. Dr Neuhaus calls these acts “positivity practices” which include “journaling, practising gratitude, stress reduction techniques, being self-compassionate and not self-critical” all of which are part of a happy brain routine to increase your baseline happiness.

open your mind

The New Outsiders

The New Outsiders



Sometimes what your brain needs is to settle down with a good old fashioned book – remember them? It doesn’t have to be a chunky classic novel if that’s not your thing. Take The New Outsiders, a fascinating showcase of must-visit locations and unusual experiences from around the world. Even if you’re fed up with your own life, you can find some meaning and escapism in these pages.

dinner party

Check Tableware

Check Tableware



Cooking is another great way to boost your baseline happiness because it means looking after yourself, and others. Impress your guests or elevate your solo dinners with this luxurious check tableware set from Shrimps. It’s hand knitted using 100% merino wool and includes a placemat, cutlery holder and coaster.

hang out, make art

Make and Decorate Your Own Candle Kit

Make and Decorate Your Own Candle Kit



Tired of your social life revolving around the pub? Invite your mates round for some pottery. This make and decorate your own candle kit from Sculpd comes with all the materials, tools and guidance you need to create your own candle. Spending time with people you care about and getting creative can both help you maintain a happy baseline.

take care





Take care of your body and feel good with Mirror Water’s luxurious bath and body set. Consisting of bath salts, body oil and solid balm, this set is designed to elevate your bathtimes to self-love sessions where you can de-stress, be mindful and feel happy.

dawn to dusk



The Herbtender


Sleep is essential for maintaining a good baseline happiness. Give your health a boost and get better sleep with The Herbtender’s Dawn to Dusk set. This invaluable morning and evening ritual will help you to gently unwind, sleep deeply and wake up ready for anything.

sweet dreams

Moonlight Shadow Silk Sleep Mask

Moonlight Shadow Silk Sleep Mask

Drowsy Sleep Co.


Get some good shut eye with Drowsy Sleep Co’s silk sleep mask, designed for next-level beauty sleep in total darkness. Think of it as a pillow for tired eyes, perfect for keeping skin and hair protected through the night. Sensational for switching off from the world and waking up on the right side of the bed.

Products are selected independently by our editors from the woo online store, a carefully curated platform for feel good fashion, beauty, wellness and lifestyle, as well as externally. Items on sale are subject to change pending stock availability. Discover more here.

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