The truth is, happiness is something that’s already inside of you. Italways has been and always will be. In fact, I believe happiness is our natural state of being – but it’s only through the conditioning ofsociety that programs to believe otherwise. It’s only when we becomeaware of the conditioning and stop chasing happiness, that we reallyhave the ability to find it within us.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say,
and what you do are in harmony.”
There would be days where I would be insanely happy and days where I felt immensely depressed. During the happy days I’d have no problem meeting people, exploring the city, feeling optimistic, and loving the world. My positive energy radiated from my personality and I attracted everything I wanted in my life.
But the down days were much, much worse. I’d sit in my bed, watch TV, and go back to sleep with continual thoughts of defeat in my head. I’d eventually drag myself out of bed to go hang out with some friends, but my mind would be somewhere else. Life seemed dull, gray, and flat out boring. I had a hard time talking to people, my anxiety skyrocketed, and my confidence dropped to an all time low.
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So what makes us happy? In general, the older you get the happier you get — until you reach very old age.
According to a Pew Research Center survey, the happiest age group is men 65 and older; the least happy: men 18 to 29.
Stats About Happy People Survey:
- Married people are happier than singles.
- College grads are happier than those without a college degree.
- People who were religious are happier than those who aren’t.
- Sunbelt residents are happier than other U.S. residents.
- Republicans are happier than Democrats — but both are happier than independents.
“The more you create, the more you deserve to consume.“
In all cases, the happiness they discover and gradually develop internally is seeded by the realization of certain fundamental truths.
Itseems we are all here to realize these truths, in our own way, in ourown time. And once they resonate fully, not just intellectually, butemotionally and spiritually, we are then able to find the happiness andpeace we seek…
1. It’s impossible for anyone else to define YOU.
You are indefinable. You are the only one in this world who gets to say who you are. Circumstances and the opinions of others can only define you if you allow them to. Do not give away your power and the magic of your essence by putting weight on negative situations in your life or the negative words of other people.
2. The past and future don’t exist.
Now is the moment. The past is just a memory. The future is a mentalprojection. You can choose to dwell back in the past for learning andjoyous reflection. You can choose to dwell in the future forvisualization and practical planning. However, any time your awarenessfloats away to the past or future frequently for negative purposes, youare suffocating your ability to thrive in the only moment you ever have… the now. Past and future literally do not exist right now – feel thefreedom in this truth.
3. About half of our happiness level is controllable.
According to The How of Happiness by researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky, about 40percent of our happiness is under our control. The other 60 percent ispredetermined by biological set points and recent life events. We areall born with different temperaments and, all else being equal, have atendency to maintain a certain happiness level over our lifetimes, highor low. Some people are just “born happier” than others—think of asmiling baby versus a fussy baby. Life events like getting married,graduating from college, or being promoted can affect our happinesslevels, but their effects diminish over time in a process known as“hedonic adaptation.” What was novel and exciting yesterday becomes “the new normal” today. We can, however, reduce the power of hedonicadaptation by deliberately practicing new attitudes and behaviors on adaily basis.
4. You Can Be Happy RIGHT NOW!
The truth is, you can be happy RIGHT NOW.
You don’t have to wait for a moment in the future when everything is perfect.
You don’t have to wait until you make a million dollars, quit your job, buy that house or car, find that perfect relationship, or when you finallyretire. Again, this is deluding yourself into believing that somethinghas to HAPPEN in order for you to be happy. Don’t buy into that, it’s a lie.
If you aren’t already happy RIGHT NOW in your life, then there’s no reason to believe you will be happy in the future.
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5. You were born with everything you need.
There is nothing you are missing. There is no need to frantically become more, be more, do more, or get more. You are whole and complete, and were gifted every talent and insight you needed to thrive in this world in the moment you were born. Your only job is to accept this truth and then allow it to unfold. Some gifts don’t become apparent until later in life. Some insights only become clear to you once you have life experiences that unlock such wisdom from within you. Trust in this and relax.
6. Forgiveness is choosing happiness over hurt.
We do not forgive others in order to free them of the situation, burden,guilt or regret. We forgive others to free ourselves and walk intocompassion and love by doing so. It is in freeing ourselves that ourenergy level rises, our consciousness rises, and in doing so thosearound us benefit too. The words of forgiveness have a positive impacton those we forgive, but ultimately forgiveness is a choice that allows us to be happy again. This goes for both forgiveness of others andforgiveness of self.
7. A happy life is different from a meaningful life.
Researchers like Roy Baumeister have compared people’s perceptions of happinessversus meaningfulness. There is quite a lot of overlap between the twostates: People who see their lives as meaningful are happier, and viceversa. But there are also differences: Happiness seems to be a transient state whereas meaningfulness is more enduring. We experience happinessin the present when our needs are satisfied, while meaningfulnessinvolves tying together the past, present, and future in a way thatmakes sense and reinforces our positive attributes. For example, havingmore money may make you somewhat happier, but whether it makes your life more meaningful depends on how you spend it.
8. It’s not about earning more, it’s about personal fulfillment.
We’ve mentioned previously that having a higher income can help make youhappy about your finances but you need to realize that it is not theamount. It is the control that it gives you over your money. That beingsaid, you should know that your happiness is not entirely reliant on how much you are taking home every month. It is more on how you feelfulfilled about your work in general.
Notice how some people have so much income but they are not really content? They work day and night trying to increase their income but they still go home unhappy. That is because they are focused on the money – and not how they earned it.
9. You can be happy right now, simply by deciding.
YOU control how you feel, nobody else does. YOU decide and determine whatevery moment of your life means. YOU have the power to look for thegood, be grateful and experience happiness in any moment of your life,despite the circumstances or what’s going on around you.
If your brain comes up with a blank, then ask yourself, what COULD you be happy RIGHT NOW if you really wanted to be?
I’m so happy that I have the ability to share and influence others through the internet and my blog.
10. Challenges are gifts for your growth.
Without challenges you cannot unlock your full potential. Obstacles areopportunities for growth. The world needs the fullness of who you are,and it is through your experiences in life that you unfold into thatfullness. How can you demonstrate willpower and strength if yourresolve has never been tested? How can you role model love andcompassion if you have never faced the opposite? Knowing there is ahigher purpose within dark times, is what leads you to be at peace inthe midst of those storms, knowing that you are a diamond being forgedunder pressure.