I was getting my haircut today and my hairdresser mentioned that he has so many clients lately who complain about being unhappy. He was telling me that he doesn’t understand why they don’t just change their situation and be happier. In some ways, I get his point that we should all just do what makes us happy and stop doing what doesn’t make us happy. On the other hand, I understand why it’s often harder than it sounds to make changes and take risks to do the things that really make us happy.
Happiness by definition is:
a) good fortune
b) a state of contentment or well being
c) a pleasurable experience.
Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.
Happiness is something that you are and it comes from the way you think.
Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude.
A teenager was recently telling me that she felt really sad and she didn’t understand why since she has a nice family, cool clothes, lots of friends, and she does well at school. She knows there are kids from Africa on TV who have lost one or both their parents. They often have to walk for miles to get water, have very little food, can’t afford to go to school, and live in a small hut. She didn’t understand why those kids look happy when they have nothing and she has what they want, but doesn’t feel happy.
Depression is one reason why many people feel unhappy, in which case please see a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment. Faulty expectations are another reason why many people are unhappy. Here are a couple things you can do to change those thought structures and discover the happiness inside you.
- Surround yourself with the right people. Avoid negative and grumpy complainers who gain attention from having or making problems. Gravitate towards optimistic and relaxed people.
- Face conflict. Use your words to tell the person what the problem is and what solution you recommend. It may seem like facing the problem is daunting, but in fact, living with the unhappiness of not fixing the problem is a much bigger stress to deal with.
- Be honest about what makes you happy. It may have been a very long time since you asked yourself what makes you happy, but somewhere inside is your truth.
- Take care of yourself and put yourself on your priority list to finally do what you want to do rather than what you’ve been expected to do.
- You don’t need to be the person you were in the past anymore if it doesn’t make you happy. Every thing that has happened in your life prepared you to have the courage to become the person you are meant to be.
- Strive to be better than you were yesterday. There will always be someone smarter, richer, better looking, or younger. Don’t worry about what others are doing, just improve on yourself.
- Let it go. If you live with anger, resentment, or frustration, you will have trouble finding happiness because it will be buried deep under all the layers of pain. Forgiveness is the answer. Let the negativity go. It serves no purpose but to make you feel unhappy.
- The little moments are the ones you are going to cherish one day, so don’t forget to notice them.
- Life is hard. I’m not sure who told you it’s not, but don’t get discouraged just because you failed or you weren’t the best at it. There is no such thing as perfect, so don’t bother trying to achieve it. If you expect that you are going to get your fair share of bumps along the journey and treat them as opportunities to learn, you won’t be unhappy.
- Worry doesn’t actually prevent bad things from happening in the future, but it does prevent you from enjoying the moment. Focus on your goals and deal with hurdles and wrenches as they come. Relax.
- Be thankful every day for what you do have. Life is short and if you forget to appreciate it, before you know it, it will be over.