Has life been handing you lemons? Even if you’re a naturally optimistic person, it’s hard to stay grinning when your home is up for foreclosure, your kid has just been bullied and you’ve found your company is about to fold up. Happiness is a state of mind, true, but getting there sometimes takes longer than expected. While you don’t want to give in to the blues, these days, no one can really blame you.

Can you use a “pick-me-up”? Then consider the following simple ways to be happy:

Start a collection of YouTube sensations. Babies who laugh so hard they literally roll on the floor. Animals who act like people. Ridiculously talented singers. Funny commercials from all over the world. Yup, the world is filled with so many amazing things, and each one has the potential to lift your mood. The good news is: the internet age can give us a peek at each one of these miracles in a click of a mouse. So get surfing! You can literally have others cheer you by demand.

Figure out your priorities. Happiness comes when you know you’re doing exactly what you’re meant to be doing. You may not be living the dream that you set out for yourself when you were younger, but if what you’re doing is important and would make a difference, then you should be proud of yourself. Regardless of how tiring a day is, knowing that you’ve accomplished something worthwhile can give you a good night sleep.

Make other people happy. An odd way of getting to happiness, isn’t it? But many would testify that it works. Every day, think of ways you can spread sunshine in someone else’s day. Perhaps you can help out a neighbor with a disability, or you can visit a friend who’s fighting a terminal illness. Happiness is contagious; when you see it in others, you just might catch it.

Throw away the glamour magazines. Many of us suffer from discontent because we aim for standards that are not even realistic. Are you depressed because your body shape doesn’t resemble those of top models? Know that so many magazine cover girls and boys are merely airbrushed to perfection. Aiming for the lifestyle of the rich and famous? Some of them are not as happy as you think they are. Stop thinking that the grass is greener on the other side. If you look at what you have a little closer, you might find that you’re richer that the person you’ve envied for years.

Lastly, don’t side-step life’s trials and stresses. Eastern philosophy asserts that there’s  purpose to the many dualities in the world. Without suffering, there can be no compassion. Without poverty, there can be no appreciation to the blessings that we receive every day. And without difficult people, we will not learn how to be more patient with our own mistakes. So, live! People who overprotect themselves from adversity are rarely happy — they lack the experience that will point them to the silver lining.