ARE YOU REALLY HAPPY??
Easter’s been and gone, winter’s kicking in in the Southern Hemisphere and there’s a long working year ahead… Are you dreading the days ahead of 2016 or are you excited to be living life in ways that make you happy?
Make a conscious choice to encrypt happiness upon your soul. In 2014 I decided to have a year for myself. A year to simply make myself happy. I took a big step back from everything in my life, reassessed and endeavoured to do only things that made me truly happy. I travelled for 5 consecutive months, started a furniture painting business, surfed more than ever, got fit again, tutored and began casual teaching. All of the things I loved. I learnt, put simply, how to make myself happy. And never have I been so busy, or happy. Who knew the two could go hand in hand. I’ve made a promise to myself to live happily for the rest the days ahead of me. These are the key ingredients I’ve learnt to live by:
You don’t need the big expensive car, a high paying job, sparkling diamond rings or a palace to reside in. In fact, happiness has nothing to do with any of the above.
Happiness has to do with the simple things in life. From my experience, it’s the unhappy people who always desire more, are always planning the next big purchase. Materialism is the perfect formula for instant satisfaction. Better known as indulgence. A short-term false sense of accomplishment.
Happiness is rather living simply. Fulfilling yourself and the people around you every single day, with things that you love. It’s a positive lifestyle. A conscious choice, day in day out. You must be proactive in learning what truly makes you happy.
LIVING FOR EACH DAY
It’s truly important to experience happiness each and every day. It’s no good craving for better days ahead. Do something, at least one thing each day, that you truly enjoy. Whether it be a walk, exercising, cooking, reading, playing with the family pet, anything that you love. It doesn’t have to be extensive. Just something you look forward to doing at some point in time each day. That’s happiness.
This is key. You need to plan time for yourself. Schedule a time for you in your busy everyday life. Make it happen day in and day out. No excuses. Even 30 minutes. Put yourself first for that short time in the day. Be time wise and proactive in making yourself happy.
DON’T TAKE ON MORE THAN YOU CAN CHEW
Being time strained and stressed is detrimental to experiencing happiness. You may need to make a change or better manage your time. Whether it be taking on less, asking someone for help, or cutting something out altogether, it is ok. Do not feel guilty. Remember you need time for you.
LEARN TO LOVE YOURSELF
Being happy with the person that you are is vital. Like the old saying goes, you have to love yourself before you can love another. You are never going to be able to please everyone, there will always be critics. So make yourself proud. It is through doing things that you enjoy that you realise your talents, your best qualities, your personality and your most favoured physical traits. Like your self, all of yourself. Let go of the negative stuff. The thoughts, the self talk, the criticism. Back yourself. Be confident, be strong and be positive with who you are. It’s is addictive.
TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF
This one is probably the most important. If you neglect yourself, you are unable to function at your best, day in and day out. This is when frustration and unhappiness kick in. Eat right, exercise regularly, make the dreaded doctor /dentist appointment. Just take care of you. Neglecting yourself is setting yourself up to experience unhappiness.
SAY I LOVE YOU
A few years ago, on my way to work, I had a bad car accident. I was extremely lucky, not to be hurt after spinning across the other side of the road and slamming into trees, on a blind corner. 2 weeks later, I had another accident. Both of these I might add, not my fault. It left me a little shaken and scared on the road, weary of other road users. After the first incident, I realised that I hadn’t said 3 little words to my partner before I hurried off to work in the daily rush. Feeling extremely blessed that someone must have been looking over me, keeping me safe, I now make a conscious choice to tell my loved ones how much I love them, every single day. This in itself makes me happy.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH INSPIRING, POSITIVE, LIKE-MINDED PEOPLE
Be inspired by the people around you. Whether its friends, family members, neighbours, a person you follow on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. Whoever it may be, seek positivity from others. Its contagious. And in return, be a happy soul that endeavours to spread positivity in the lives of others, even if it’s just through a simple simile or exchange of ‘How are you?’ Be a better person.
Be focused. Be driven. Be determined. And you will succeed. Have a plan and start it, focusing on what the ultimate end goal is. It might be to get the job you’ve always aspired, to travel, to buy a house, whatever it may be. It’s important to keep coming back and reassessing your progress regularly, making necessary changes and being persistent in order to reach accomplishment. Be sure to reward yourself at small milestones along the way, as celebrating achievement keeps you motivated.
LOVE YOUR JOB
Being happy in the work force is paramount. Many hours of our week are exchanged for time in the office, a classroom, building site etc. It’s no use if going to work feels like a chore. Make a change if you are unhappy. You and you alone are in control of your destiny. Chose a job that you enjoy, one that you attend painlessly. Choosing a job that comes with responsibility can also help achieving a sense of happiness.
LEAVE IT IN THE PAST
Hanging on to regrets, past negative experiences, grudges with friends, family members or other people in your life is not healthy. In fact, it can leave unhealthy encryptions in your being. These need to be shed. Let go of the negative stuff. It is ok to cut negative people out of your life. Whether they be disguised as friends or family. Whether it’s forgiving, forgetting or just simply moving on, choose to keep a positive mind-set, day in and day out. No excuses. Being negative is draining.
Remember, happiness is a lifestyle and sometimes it’s harder to seek than we initially realise. Some of your daily habits may need rethinking. It may seem difficult at first, but once you start feeling happier, healthier and more positive, there’s no looking back. So be proactive, be persistent and put your self first. Chose to encrypt happiness upon your life. Live for today, as for now, that’s all we really know.