Make this year that you practice happiness for YOU…by doing more of this.
As we said, HAPPINESS is the ultimate currency. For example, you can have loads of money, but if you are not happy, then your life can sort of suck. So here’s some of what I have learnt and practice in my quest to be a slave to happiness. 😉
1.Focus on happiness. Focus on joy and the things that bring you joy. Decide that since happiness is so important, that you will invest some of your time, energy and money, in getting to know happiness better. Buy a book on it. Listen to an audio program on it. I have mentioned this before. The ‘pursuit of happiness’ does not mean to chase it. The original meaning of pursuit was to practice! Being surrounded and immersed in happiness = feeling more happiness in your life.
2. Spend time with happy people. Choose to spend the majority of your time with energetic, positive, optimistic, passionate, inspiring and happy people. You have probably heard the saying that you are the average of the 5 people you spend most time with. Interesting. More happiness around you = more happiness in and through you.
3. Stop making assumptions. About what your partner thinks, what the boss thinks, what your friends think, and what your children think. Stop making assumptions about what could go wrong in a situation. When you stick with WHAT IS (the ‘facts’ in front of you), and take the emotion of assumptions out of the picture, you are more likely to find a quicker and more effective solution to whatever your challenges are. Feeling less overwhelmed (by things that actually do not exist outside the confines of your mind) = more happiness.
4. ALWAYS be kind to yourself. Never say you are bad at something, just say that you are not great, yet. If you make a mistake say, “Oh phooey I made a mistake. Best fix that if I can.” No other person on the planet is perfect. So don’t be ashamed if you make a mistake, because your favorite hero has probably made as many as you. In fact lots of people are ‘great’ because they made so many mistakes. Being nice to yourself = a house for happiness.
5. Ask better questions. One difference between an optimist and a pessimist is the question they ask when something happens. Let me list the two questions and then see if you can figure out which question each of them asks.
1) “What is wrong (or could be wrong) with this situation?” and
2) “What is great (or could be great) with this situation?”
Bit of a no-brainer. You can actually learn to be optimistic, just by FOCUSING on the good in all situations. It is always there. Just ask a positive question. Positive question = positive answer = happy feelings.
6. Check in on your body. Just by standing up tall, looking ahead or high, and breathing deeply; you can change your mood significantly. Your body is connected to your emotions. So by changing your body or physiology you can change your mood. Also moving your body (a.k.a. physical activity) helps the immune system function, energizes you, creates a feel-good cocktail of chemicals, and at a psychological level makes you feel better about yourself. More energy = more ability to do the things you need to do to make you happy.
7. Practice integrity – as one of your highest virtues. There is so much power and strength in telling the truth, to others and to yourself. And this is not just at the emotional level. Studies have shown that your body is much physically stronger when telling the truth and weaker when lying. It is ok to change your mind, and even to break a promise, IF you come from a place of integrity (and compassion). For instance you could say, “I know I said that I would go with you to the party, but the truth of the matter is that I really do not want to go at all.” Now someone might be pissed off with you, but they are less likely to be annoyed at you not going and more annoyed that you did not say what you really thought (your truth). This is HUGE if you want to like yourself more and place a high worth on yourself. Integrity = deeper happiness
8. Be conscious of what you put in your mouth. Really conscious. Know that if you put great fuel into your body that the engine will work at its optimum! Your energy will be high, your resilience will be greatly increased, your immune system will function better, and you will have a more healthy glow. Great food = great energy = stable emotions = ability to do more = greater health = more happiness!
9. Practice Gratitude. Yep. Practice it. Physically say what you are grateful for each and every day. To the universe, to your dog, to your fruit tree, to your partner, to your friends, to your family, to your employees, to your body, to your past, to life’s opportunities, etc. There is a direct link (proven in numerous studies) between gratitude and happiness. Expressing gratitude = happiness.
10. Know where you want to go. It is much easier to get there if you know where there is. The more detail, the more likely to arrive at the right place at the right time. It is like me saying to you, let’s meet in China. If we leave from two separate locations, the chances of us actually meeting are about a bazillion to one! But if we say, let’s meet in Beijing, at the Hilton Hotel Wangfujing, in the hotel lobby, at 10am local time on 2 January; we WILL meet up. It allowed us to know the final destination and therefore put a PLAN in place to make it happen. Future goals (with good meaning) = happy campers!
Have an awesome day too!