Questions about feelings and happiness are common in the IELTS examinations and you are often asked what type of activities or situations make you feel happy. If you are able to use a more diverse and comprehensive of words to describe your feelings your answers will sound more advanced and concise. This page contains useful words and phrases that will make your answers sound more natural. There are also activities for you to IELTS practice with some real questions.
Table of Contents
1. General Happiness Vocabulary
- Amused – To find something entertaining or funny
- Content/Satisfied – In a state of peaceful happiness
- Delighted – To feel a high amount of pleasure
- Depend on/Rely on – To need something or someone for help or support
- Ecstatic/Elated/Euphoric – To feel overwhelming happiness or excitement
- Exuberant – Filled with energy or excitement
- Free time/Spare time – The time a person has available to engage in recreational activities
- Jolly – Happy and cheerful
- Jubilant – To feel great happiness or triumph, often after a victory or success of some kind
- Loved ones – The people close to you. I.e. family and close friends
- Mental well-being – The state in which an individual copes or manages the stresses of life
- Optimistic/Pessimistic – Someone who always has a positive/negative outlook
- Satisfaction – The fulfilment of wishes, hopes, needs, or expectations
- Serene – Calm and peaceful
- To adore – To really enjoy or love something
- To loathe – To hate something intensely
- To tackle – To deal with a problem or task
- Workload – The among of work a person performs in their job/life
2. General Happiness Vocabulary Activity
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What are some of the things that make you happy?
There is nothing that I adore more than spending time with my wife and children. I have quite a heavy workload from my job, which involves me travelling a lot. So, when I do eventually get spare time, which is rare, I like to spend as much of it as possible with them. The specific activity we engage in is not so important to me, as long as I am with my loved ones, I am content. Generally, I am quite an optimistic person and I always try to look on the bright side of things. However, with all the stress of my job I rely on that valuable time with them for my mental well-being
3. Happiness Idioms, Phrasal Verbs, and Collocations
- A fool’s paradise – A false state of happiness in which a person is either unaware of problems or chooses to ignore them
- A state of bliss – To be in a state of complete happiness or joy
- Choke up – To be unable to speak because of feelings of sadness and the urge to cry
- Circle of friends – A group of friends
- Down in the dumps – To feel very sad or disappointed
- Financial burden – A responsibility related to paying money
- Fly off the handle – To lose one’s temper and become angry
- Grinning from ear to ear – To have an extremely big smile
- Happy-go-lucky – Cheerful and unconcerned about the future
- Hot under the collar – To become embarrassed or angry
- In stitches – Laughing uncontrollably
- Jumping for joy – To be extremely happy
- Lash out – To respond aggressively to someone
- Let off some steam – To do something that helps you get rid of strong feelings of energy, stress, or tension
- Light up – When a person’s face suddenly looks happy and joyful
- Look forward to – To be enthusiastic about a future event
- Mental breakdown – A period of intense mental stress that impairs a person’s function
- On cloud nine – To be extremely happy
- On top of the world – To be extremely happy
- Part and parcel – A necessary and basic part of something
- Settle down – To start a steady and stable life with a job, house, and family
- To lose it – To become extremely angry and lose one’s temper
- Walking on air – To be extremely happy
4. Happiness Idioms, Phrasal Verbs, and Collocations Activity
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Do you think money leads to happiness?
I think in some respects it can make people a little more happy-go-lucky becuase worry less about their financial future. However, I think that stress is part and parcel of life, regardless of whether you are wealthy or not. There are plenty of rich people who are miserable or experience mental breakdowns, even though they have lots of money. One positive factor concerning money is that it offers you a wider choice of recreational activities to engage in when you want to let off steam and destress. On the whole though, when a person has an excess of money, it leaves them with little or nothing to look forward to or aim for in the future.
What do you think will make you happy when you are retired?
When I retire I believe that the things that will make me happy are my family and my circle of friends, whom I value very much. I hope by that age I will have settled down, which doesn’t necessarily mean getting married, but I want to own a nice property in the countryside, with no additional financial burden, except for food and living costs. I would feel like I was on cloud nine if I woke up every day to hear the beautiful sound of nature. Being able to let off steam every day by walking or cycling would put me in a pure state of bliss!
For more practice, Visit IELTS vocabulary for Communication.