“Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.” Marcus Aurelius
Your happiness … your thinking.
Would you like to increase your happiness – would you just like to be happier?
One way to increase happiness is to release the past (anger) and think about today, not tomorrow (anxiety) or next week, but just today. By letting go of anger you’re letting go of the past. The people I’ve talked to all have said there is nothing that they can do to change the past – so why live there. There is nothing that can be done to change the past and by letting it go you permit yourself to experience greater happiness.
Take a deep breath. Maybe a few of them, 3-5 minutes. Get into a comfortable chair or position and just do some nice slow deep breathing. Put on some nice music and put life on pause for a few minutes. Deep breathing can really help calm the nerves and help you relax. Go ahead try it.
Remove negative thoughts. Are your thoughts true? How do you absolutely know your negative thoughts are true? Ask yourself, “How does this thought make me feel?” and then “What would it be like if you didn’t hold that belief?” In a few minutes you can test your thoughts and find out if they are helping or hindering you.
Take a moment to write down in a journal your thoughts. Doing this before you go to bed helps you sleep better. Better sleep means a better tomorrow. Journaling is a way to release the past (what just happened) and allows you to examine your day. What did you learn today? What did you experience today? What can you do to make it better tomorrow?
Increasing your happiness is just a few easy and quick steps away. Start today.
“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.”
― Dalai Lama XIV
Did you find happiness today?
Do you know what happiness is?
What would make you happier?
A better job.
A better relationship.
A better purpose.
A better life.
A better car.
An easier job.
What is it for you? What would really make you happier?
What is stopping you from being happier?
Have you thought about what changes would need to be made to enable you to be happier?
If you have, then when will you start?
If not, when will you think about your own happiness.
Life is too short to be living in misery.
“If you think something is missing in your life, it is probably YOU…”
― Robert Holden
Have you ever had that feeling that something is missing in your life? Have you taken the time to find it?
For some people life is a struggle. It’s not that it has to be a struggle it is just the way they believe things are. I’ve heard, “I just can’t do this kind of work.”, and they lament the very fact that the work is challenging instead of looking at how they could make those challenges smaller. They could learn more or dig into the material that they don’t understand and find ways to learn the material. In other words they could chose to attack work rather than letting work attack them.
“I don’t have enough time to do all the things I want to do.” and I’ll guess that you’ve uttered those words when the amount of things in life just seem overwhelming. The list of things to do just keeps growing and it is starting to crowd out what you really want to do. I’ll ask those people, “what do you really want to be doing? or what is most important to be done now.” After a few minutes a list of important things becomes visible and the unimportant things also become visible. From there it is a choice – “what do you want to do with what you have on the list?” Prioritization and making sure that the list of things to do are the things that matter most. Figure that out and there is time for you.
Are you struggling? Not just having a difficult time but really struggling to be your best self. What are you doing about it? What is missing in your life?
For some people it is motivation and they aren’t finding the energy to do something. When you’re not motivated what do you do about it? What keeps you in the game?
Do you have problems just getting started on something? Is it easier to wait, for another few minutes, hours and then days? Pretty soon that project, that idea, or inspiration just falls into the heap of the undone and unnoticed.
Where are you? Do you have all the things in life that you want to have? What’s missing?
Are you living the life you thought you’d be living now? Did you imagine things turning out differently? What changed?
If you find that your life isn’t going in the direction you would like it go, then what do you want to be doing differently? What I have found is that life without direction is often due to the fact there is no plan, there are no goals, and without goals and a plan life just tends to happen.
What do you want from your career?
What do you want to contribute?
What are your own personal development goals?
Where do you see yourself in ten years? Or, where do you want to see yourself in ten years?
Imagine the life you want to live. Write down that story and use that story to guide you to a better and happier future. Once you have the story written down, set some goals and assign a date to those goals and then start working to achieve those goals. See what you can do this year to grow, learn and to experience a better life. Start today!
“Perhaps the severest requirement of the good life is to have the constancy of mind to maintain our joy and gratitude even amid hardship, pain, and injustice.”
Brendon Burchard from the Motivation Manifesto
Have you ever asked the question what do people want? What do people really want? Is it more money? For some it is but for most it isn’t. Is it a better job, for some that may be the case but there are some who have their dream job. Is traveling what you want? Is it a better relationship? Is it personal growth? Is it the feeling of significance? What is it that people want?
The answer might be as simple as a choice. The choice to do what really matters most is what people want. Work is often a choice for many people if it is engaging and meaningful. Relationships that are fulfilling and allow for personal growth is a choice many would like to be able to make. What kind of choices could you make to increase vitality and joy in your life?
What dreams have you had that dried up and blew away that you wish you made the choice to follow? The choice was there at one time and you ignored its call to follow something that others would say is more important. What if you had that chance again would you follow your dream?
The mastery of life is about making the best choices for you. It is about living your life authentically and with vitality. The mastery of life is about creating wonderful goals that inspire and motivate you and then doing what you can with what you have to realize those goals. The mastery of life is about being aware of who you are and what you are doing. The mastery of life is about having the ability to make choices. What choices are you making that will make your life rich with significance?
A new year is around the corner. What changes do you want to make in your life?What do you want to do that matters most to you? What is stopping you from realizing your dreams?
Mastery is not something that strikes in an instant, like a thunderbolt, but a gathering power that moves steadily through time, like weather.”
― John Gardner
“So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself: who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?”
― Hunter S. Thompson
Happiness is easy to know that it is missing and hard to find when you don’t know where to find it. With the rapid pace of change many people are finding that they have less time to just stop, pause and experience something natural, the sunrise, the sunset, the smell of the air, the rush of a brook, the sound of a bird, the freshness of the breeze or the roll of the seas as they embrace the shoreline. Too many people are hoping that other people will give them happiness or that buying something will generate happiness or that escaping reality will provide a moment of joy and none of those will provide lasting happiness.
Happiness may come briefly and if you’re not paying attention to it, it will run away and hide. Happiness is something you sense and paying attention to that moment will allow you to experience that joy.
Here are a few things you can do to boost your own happiness.
1. Connect with other people.
2. Practice empathy – understand others, validate and acknowledge them.
3. Listen to them. Just listen to what others have to say.
4. Practice kindness – do something special for someone else just because you can.
5. Forgive others who have hurt you. Forgive is releasing the pain, not the memory.
6. Be trustworthy – the ability to trust others reduces stress
7. Practice mindfulness – take a personal timeout
8. Eliminate toxic thoughts
9. Experience “flow” – when time melts away
10. Practice gratitude
Choose one method to increase your practice and try it. Record your results over a week and see what changes.
“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.”
― Tom Bodett
Happiness is a popular topic in the culture today. People are looking for ways to enjoy life. It is understandable when you see 50% of marriages failing, 71% of people are looking for new jobs, or for any job or are willing to accept a new job. There are a lot of things that steal energy from you that you have to deal with on a daily basis. Finding ways to reduce the energy thieves is going to help you experience more happiness on a daily basis.
What can you do to experience more happiness in your day-to-day life.
1. Find something that is positive in each day. Find two or three things that created a nice feeling for you. Write those things down.
2. Manage your time. Do what you can rather than trying to add too much to your schedule. We live in a world where everything seems like it needs to be done yesterday. Is that really the case? Give yourself more time.
3. Create an open space. This open space is a few minutes of time to do “nothing”. Just sit in a comfortable place, breathe and relax. Set a timer for 5 minutes and just step away from the noise, confusion and motion.
4. Exercise is one of the most important things that you can do to improve levels of happiness. The body in motion improves mood, improves health, improves mental clarity and improves well-being. If you don’t have a lot of time to move find a way to include movement in your day. Five minutes here and five minutes there can add up. Do something that increases your rate of breathing and boosts your heart rate.
5. Get enough sleep. The brain needs to rest. A happy brain will help you manage stress better, focus better, retain information better and it will help you feel better. Turn of the electronics 30 minutes for bed time. Clear your mind of all the noise and start to relax. If you have a lot of thoughts write them down. Create your plan for the next day and let your mind rest.
Five easy things to do to improve happiness. Add those into your life and your happiness will start to increase. Pay attention to your happiness. Give your day a happiness rating and see how it trends over time. Be kind to yourself and you’ll start seeing results soon.
If you have ideas on ways to improve happiness leave a comment. What works for you?
“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.”
― C. JoyBell C.
Are you growing? Are you developing your profession? Are you investing in yourself? Are you becoming more than you were yesterday?
Many people leave out their own growth in the quest to live a happy life and find that working on all the other things while important doesn’t always lead to a happier life. Personal growth in some shape or fashion does help create change, change towards something better.
How many books have you read this year?
What kinds of books are you reading?
How is new information helping you grow?
What do you want to grow towards?
Stay curious and grow.
“We cannot know what a human being can achieve until we have seen [the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel].” — Wolfgang von Goethe
What do you want your masterpiece to be? Everyday you have the opportunity to do something great, what will it be?
How are you going to use your genius, your passion, your grit, your persistence, your practice, your pursuit, your intelligence to make a difference in this world. The world needs all of who you are every day. You can make a difference. You have the all the abilities you need to change the world.
What will be your Sistine Chapel moment? What will be your Sistine Chapel contribution to the world?
The realm of exceptional performance comes from the pursuit of an idea that is at the edges of your abilities that push your limits beyond where you have been before. Push yourself, move outside the comfort of the known to experience the unknown and do something great. Go to the place where the fear lives within you and push it back.