What is happiness to you?
Definition of Happiness
“Happiness is a mental or emotional state of well-being defined by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy. Happy mental states may also reflect judgements by a person about their overall well-being”.
Happiness is a very broad subject because it means different things to different people, however, regardless of a person’s age, sex, culture, background, personality, I have found with over 20 years of coaching and mentoring people from all around the World, there are definitely some commonalities.
Many people think that external things will make them happy, and it may for a while, however, it is not lasting and permanent. I have tried that myself. Some of the common things that we think will make us happy are:
- job or career
- new relationship
- new location
- any addictions
- and on and on it goes
The problem with expecting the above things to make you happy is that as soon as it goes, then your happiness goes. You have no control over your own happiness because you are relying on other things, or people, to make you happy. You are giving your power away.
Why we pursue happiness?
One of the main reasons we pursue happiness is because of the feelings we get when we are happy. Those chemical and physiological reactions we get in our body when “feel good” chemicals ( Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins) are released into the body that give us a natural “high”.
So the BIG question is, “What does make me happy?”
Have you ever had this experience where, you have had many of the above external things and still not been happy?
There is an old cliché that says “Happiness starts from within“.
The TRUE foundation of happiness
When you are happy with yourself (your self-worth, your self-esteem, your self-confidence, your self-love) then no matter what happens externally you will continue to be happy, you will have lasting happiness. All the above things just enhance your happiness. This is where you have total control over how happy you are. And the key to all this is your self-awareness. How self-aware you are will help you to realise what you need to change and how to change it. We cannot change what we are not aware of.
It is a mindset. A mind shift. It is a choice to be happy or not happy. When I coach people together we work out what makes you happy and then work out strategies on how to implement them and sustain them long term.
Yes we will have our “down” days, however, how long you stay down depends on you. It is a choice. In my workshops we work through what to do on the down days
Tips to increase your happiness
There are some basic things that you can do today that can help you increase your happiness such as:
- Do something every day that will improve your physical health. When we have good physical health we always feel happier
- Eat fresh fruit and vegetables every day
- do some form of exercise every day
- listen to uplifting music
- say positive affirmations to yourself every day
- have positive self-talk
- smile- we cannot be unhappy or sad when we smile
- have quiet time such as meditation to still the mind
- do workshops, listen to positive CDs/DVDs, read a positive article/book
- say 3 things you are grateful for every day
- have a gratitude journal
- write in a daily journal
- tell yourself in the mirror that you love yourself
- laugh every day
- have fun and be a kid again
- jump in puddles, dance in the rain, swing on swing
- do anything that makes you smile and your heart sing
- give someone a cuddle
Just start with a couple of these and work up to more each week. Do it EVERY day.
Let me know how you go. I would love your feedback on what worked and what didn’t.