Secrets to Happiness
We are all on a journey to find happiness. Henry David Thoreau said "Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder." But to a lot of psychologists well, it isn’t so because being happy is a choice.
We can pursue happiness. We can do this by ignoring negative emotions such as pessimism, resentment, and anger. And we can foster positive emotions, such as empathy, serenity, and especially gratitude.
• Stop Worrying and Choose to be Happy
Make a conscious choice to boost your happiness. Psychologists who study happiness heartily agree that we should all have the intention to be happy. Intention is the active desire and commitment to be happy. It's the decision to consciously choose attitudes and behaviors that lead to happiness over unhappiness.
Choose to make happiness a top goal. Choose to take advantage of opportunities to learn how to be happy like reprogramming your beliefs and values. Learn good self-management skills, good interpersonal skills, and good career-related skills. Choose to be in environments and around people that increase your probability of happiness. The persons who become the happiest and grow the most are those who also make truth and their own personal growth primary values. Happiness also depends on how we manage our emotions and our relationships with others.
Once you've decided to be happier, you can choose strategies for achieving happiness.
• Be Grateful
Perform a daily "gratitude exercise." It involves listing a few things that make you grateful and read it daily. This shifts you away from bitterness and despair, and promotes happiness. There are many things in life to be grateful of – those little things that make us smile.
• Foster Forgiveness
Holding a grudge and nursing grievances can affect physical as well as mental health. One way to curtail these kinds of feelings is to foster forgiveness. This reduces the power of bad events to create bitterness and resentment.
In the book entitled “The Psychology of Happiness” it teaches us Five Steps to Forgiveness. First, recall the hurt. Then empathize and try to understand the act from the perpetrator's point of view. Second, be altruistic by recalling a time in your life when you were forgiven. Third, commit to putting your forgiveness into words. Forth, do this either in a letter to the person you're forgiving or in your journal. Finally, try to hold on to the forgiveness. Don't dwell on your anger, hurt, and desire for vengeance.
• Counter Negative Thoughts and Feelings
The key is a commitment to doing the things necessary to retrain that happy feeling. You can practice meditation, rhythmic breathing, yoga, or relaxation techniques to quell anxiety and promote serenity. You can learn to recognize and challenge thoughts you have about being inadequate and helpless.
If you learn techniques for identifying negative thoughts, then it's easier to challenge them.
• Money Can’t Buy You Happiness
Regardless of what we achieve in the pursuit of stuff, it's never going to bring about an enduring state of happiness. The love your family gives you cannot be bought by money. It can only give you a little extra happiness with material things, but you’ll never achieve the true essence of happiness.
• Foster Friendship
Close friendships with people who care about you provides support in good and bad times. Spending good times together, laughing together, helping each other out in times of difficulties, and knowing that you are not alone and someone’s there to always lend a helping hand provides you with great happiness.
• Get More Out of Life
Engage in meaningful activities, enjoy and be happy!
Happiness would always be a matter of choice. You can choose to be happy by doing things that would make you feel happy. Fill your mind with a lot of good positive thoughts, and don’t let anything destroy that happy feeling. Ignore the negative and embrace the positive things in life. Smile and be happy!