It was International Happiness Day recently so it seems quite fitting to share a few tips on how to bring more joy into your life. We sometimes forget that happiness is not something that just happens… It actually comes from our own actions so here are 3 simple steps to help you on your way.
First of all, it’s all about control. As human beings, we like control but what we especially like is to manipulate and engineer the outcome that we want. It’s just the way that we work, nothing good or bad about it, we all want to get our own way. Only that never works… The only thing it does is contribute to anxiety and dissatisfaction as we cannot control others, their opinions or actions, their emotions and feelings, or how they react. We can however control our own stuff, but we often don’t. Unfortunately, we don’t want to believe that we have to take responsibility for our own lives. After all, look how it comes about in movies or in books? That’s what we would like to happen but in reality, it rarely does. So take a good look at what you are feeling unhappy about and whether you have some control over it or not. You may believe that there is nothing you can do, and that could be true. But what could you do? Maybe you are even trapping yourself in an unsatisfactory situation…
The second step is to face up to what you is stopping you from being happy. Is it a relationship? Is it a job? Is it a particular person? Has it just become a state of mind? But more importantly, why is it a problem and what can YOU do about it? Confronting and accepting the real problem is probably the hardest step but once you have made the conscious decision to be happy and to act on it, it will happen quite naturally.
Lastly, dismiss what doesn’t serve you once you have learnt the lesson. There is little point getting sucked into a spiral of unhealthy thoughts apart from making you feel worse. Start to catch yourself when you are doing that and change it to something that you enjoy more. The best way is to put that thought out of your head for 24 hours and when it comes back, to consciously put it back out of your head again for another 24 hours.
When we feel low, it’s sometimes difficult to see the wood for the trees but focusing on everything that’s going wrong in your life isn’t actually going to make it any better. Instead, focus on what you can do to improve it and take the first step towards it… TODAY.