What is happiness? What makes us happy? I think if you were to ask this question, most people would answer winning the lottery, or buying a bigger house, new car, fantastic holiday and the list goes on and on. What really surprises me is that people tend to look for happiness in money and status. But does that really make you happy? What is happy? Is my happiness the same as you happiness?
When you really think about it and think about what would really make you happy, your answer would be quite different.
In this age of social media, which to me seems to be like one enormous competition. We have started to measure success by what car you drive, how big your house is or how many holiday’s you take a year, and I’m sure if you don’t know what makes you happy I am willing to bet that you know what makes you unhappy.
To me happiness is when you are content and settled in your life. You’re happy with what you have and you aren’t constantly chasing and wishing for bigger and better.
So how do we achieve this?
Here is a list I have made of some ideas that may help you on you road to happiness. Some may seem so obvious but just take some time to focus and think about your life in its current state, would you change anything, add anything to it, even take something out of it? What do you like having in your life, and what would you do to it if you could.
Selfish Darling’s Road to Happiness
1 – Connect with people – This may seem quite obvious, but there is nothing better than a catch up with good friends. Meeting up for a coffee or something stronger and having conversations that make you laugh will always make you feel good. We love that human connection and I’m sure so many of us have missed that recently.
2 – The Great Outdoors – Yes, a big walk out in the fresh air is so beneficial. I promise you this will make you feel better. It will get those happiness endorphins flowing through your body in no time and just makes you feel alive. But just try and get out there even if it’s just for ten minutes.
3 – Learn something new – I think we sometimes feel like we are stuck on the hamster wheel of sleep, eat and work, which can make us feel really fed up. So ask yourself is there something new you have always wanted to try. It could be learning a new language, taking up martial arts, joining an art class, the list goes on and on. There are so many online course you could sign up for. We are lucky to have the internet at our finger tips and get searching and see what is out there.
4 – Have a goal – It’s good to have a goal, something to aim for. It will help give you focus and direction towards what you want to achieve in your life. Setting a goal will motivate you, make a plan, write it down. But please just bear in mind to set yourself something realistic, if you suddenly decide at 35 you want to be a prima ballerina that might just be out of your reach. But otherwise the sky’s the limit. Go for it!
5- Love yourself – This is such an important one, and one I am still learning to embrace myself. The main thing for me is not being negative towards yourself. No one is perfect, accepting your imperfections, whatever they might be, does not make you unworthy. You deserve to be happy just like every other person on this planet.
Also, please don’t compare yourself to air-brushed models in magazines, or the neighbour who always looks perfectly put together everyday. She might not be happy on the inside and uses her appearance as a shield or defence mechanism. It is so hard to tell how someone is feeling on the inside when they put a brave face on everything.
I could go on and on about more ways to feel happy. There are so many things to do and try that can start you on your own path to happiness. But it is ultimately up to you to decide whether you are chasing happiness or are you choosing happiness.
I surround myself with things that make me happy, books, photos, listening to uplifting music and dancing in my house with no regard to what I look like. Am I ridiculously happy 24 hours a day 7 days a week, walking around with a huge grin on my face, no, but I choose to be happy in what I do.
If you really hate your job for example, would it be a difficult decision to look for another. If you have reached the point were you struggle to get out of bed in the morning, and drink a bottle of wine a night just to sleep, I’m guessing you aren’t happy. If this is you, take some time just for yourself, put yourself first, decide what it is you want and put a plan of action together and focus on all your positive attributes and let go of the negative, they are what bring you down.
Write a list of every negative thing you think and feel, set it on fire and dance around if you have to, whatever works for you. But let it all go, don’t keep the negativity. I know there will be times when things go wrong, and you have a bad day at work, but it’s just one day. Go to bed believing that tomorrow will be better.
So just for today, I want you to let go of the past, it can’t affect you any more, it’s gone, why worry about what you cannot change. Take a long hard look at your life. Do you want to change anything? Does it make you smile? If it does, fantastic, if it doesn’t, look at the things you can change. It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture, the little things soon add up to something great.
And lastly please don’t panic, you are doing OK, you are doing the best you can. The fact you want to make positive changes in your life is a good thing. Do what you have always wanted to do, follow those dreams, make your plans for the future, but most of all, enjoy it. All anyone can ask for is to have joy in their life!