5 ways to feel happier
Happiness is something we want, yearn for, covet after… But most of the time, even after being happy for a while, we are not satisfied and feelings of despondency get the better of us.
Is it possible to be happy despite the situation you are in or does the situation control your happiness?
If that is the case, we are living based on external factors. How many times do we bemoan:
“if only this and that would change, then I would be so much happier.”
“If only I had more money..”
“If only I could lose weight…”
“If only I could quit an addiction.”
Life would be better.
Yes it would but many a times, results take time to show and it is during these interim periods that we should not let our feelings bring us down.
I would like to share with you 5 ways to feel happier
1. Happiness is a choice
Our dependence on circumstances or people shouldn’t define our happiness. In fact, we shouldn’t even be depending on them. I decided that I shouldn’t hold anyone or anything responsible for my happiness and that I would still choose to feel happy no matter what.
Tell yourself today that you CHOOSE to be happy and that it is possible to feel so. Say it out loud or mutter under your breath whenever someone makes you mad or when things seem to not be going your way.
You will soon find that you can control your feelings and not the other way round. You might be feeling irritated or impatient but you can control how that manifests and choose to feel relaxed, joyful and calm instead.
2. Take action!
I was hearing a sermon being preached at my church one day and what the preacher said encouraged me as I was kind of feeling depressed. This is not religious and can apply to everybody.
HE shared this cycle to practice: ACTION-BODY-FEEL-THINK
Like Nike’s slogan. JUST DO IT! By making changes and not excuses, we jolt our body into making a positive change and that in turn makes us feel good and when we feel good, we start thinking positive thoughts.
This brings me to the next point..
3. Think about what you are thinking
Are you always thinking you can’t, it’s too hard or it’s not possible?
Thinking positively is the key. It’s all too easy to think negatively, we tend to beat ourselves up when we fail at our first, second try or even maybe the 99th try.
I read something a while back: a woodcutter had a small axe and set about cutting down an enormous tree. Now at first, looking at his little axe, he thought, he could never cut down that tree, it was just too huge. After a few chops, he only managed to get a few chips of wood off.
But he didn’t give up and thought positively:” With a little patience, the results would show over time and not overnight. Truly, one day, the tree did fall because of his great perseverance.
It’s not the 999 chops that made the tree fall but the 1000th one.
*lol, I sound like Confucius
4. Setting positive goals
The woodcutter had a positive goal in mind, to get the wood. By setting a goal for yourself, we have something to look forward too. A sense of anticipation, eagerness..It gets your engine going..
There is a saying, an idle mind is the devil’s workshop, when our mind is kept busy, negative thoughts can’t find their way in as we are focused on our goals. As Voltaire puts it:” Work spares us from three evils, boredom, vice and need.”
By keeping busy, we are sowing seeds of positivity into our life. In due time, we will reap what we sow.
5. Turn setbacks into lessons and experiences
There is no such thing always being successful and not experiencing failure in life. It’s the pitfalls we experience that mould our character and make us a stronger person.
Every failure we go through and get out of our way brings us closer to our dreams.
It’s perfectly fine to grieve or antagonise over what went wrong but give yourself a time frame and after which don’t look back.
Like Thomas Edison, the great inventor who failed to perfect the light bulb until a few thousand tries later. I imagined he must have felt disappointment but I am also pretty sure that he put his feelings of disappointment aside and focused on his goals and as his famous quote goes, “‘I have not failed. I have just found 9,999 ways that do not work’.
In short, I was feeling pretty blue about some bad choices I made and wallowed in self-pity for a while, but soon I realised that it didn’t do anyone any good, most of all, me. So, I practised these 5 ways to feel happier and indeed, I am much happier today than I ever was yesterday and before.
Whenever I feel down, which I still do sometimes, I always re visit these options that I have to help me stay happy and positive.
* Wrote this a few years back but somehow never thought to post it till now… It’s nice to read what you write in the past sometimes.