We all search for happiness. Everything we do, everything we feel, every word we speak is aimed at bringing us closer to a state of bliss. Many of us believe that happiness is something that happens by chance. It’s easy to become jealous when we see people living a happy life. We can easily assume that they’ve always had it easy and that somehow they’ve escaped the less desirable elements of life.
But the chances are that they’ve recognized something difficult to grasp: you must fight for true happiness. Here are a few things to think about to get closer to happiness.
If you’ve ever hit a rough spot in your life, you’ve probably since heard the phrase ‘Don’t dwell on the past.’ But our power to recall is one of the greatest assets we have in altering our mind frame. An inability to engage with our memory can hold us back and have very damaging results.
Memories are often changeable, and we attach different meanings to them at different times. So do recall memories, even painful ones, but allow yourself to see them in a new light.
Having said that, it is also important to live in the now. If you spend your time dwelling things that are beyond control you lead yourself towards stress. Being present means that you can help yourself be okay with what may lay ahead. You can’t completely destroy the fear of what may come, but with enough willpower, that which we fear can be made to seem small. Whatever challenge you may face, visualize the moment as a thrilling waterslide that you must hurl yourself towards in order to get the best out of it.
You cannot escape the fact that life would be very dull indeed were it not for other people. Our mood and well-being are completely linked with those that we associate with. You cannot please all the people all the time and conflicts are inevitable. But seeking to find de-escalation with these people is the best you can do. If you listen attentively, adopt a nonjudgmental attitude and forgive without condition, you’ll find your relationships improve. Loving environments take work and vulnerability from everyone involved, and sometimes it takes someone like you to make the first step.
Time is a resource that seems to elude most people. It is a slippery thing that somehow always gets away. But once you learn how to control your time, you’ll find it much easier to do the things that make you happy.
Take a blank calendar and before you do anything else with fill in the dates which you know will make you happy, like birthdays, holidays and other anniversaries that will make smile. Make time for your passions.
Our lifestyle choices changer as we get older. What made you happy when you were a teenager may not make you happy now. There is always room for change. If you’ve led a life that has meant you’ve only ever eaten junk food, drunk beer and watched TV - it may have worked for you at one point but ask yourself - does it now? You may find losing that weight, giving up that bad habit will be just the achievement you need to feel the happiness you seek.
Conversely, if you’ve worked since you left school, exercised every day and rushed about trying to hold your life together through stress, maybe its time to slow down and enjoy your life. There is nothing wrong with daydreaming.
Once you let go of the destructive habits that have limited your growth and create habits that create happiness, it will become easier to find joy in everything you do.
Nora Mork is a lifestyle journalist at UK Writings and Essay Roo. She enjoys doing yoga, reading American literature, and writing columns for magazines and blogs, such as Boom Essays.