Everybody wants to live a happy life and get rid of all the negativity. It might be easier said than done. We are only human and we are more prone to succumb to negative feelings especially when things are not going the way we expect it should be. But being happy and positive is really a matter of choice. If you decide to be positive, you can find something to be happy about in every situation, whether it is good or bad. If you want and choose to be happy then you can be.
What is the first step to happiness? The first step to happiness is to just decide to be a happy person. The choice is simple, choose to be happy. There are several ways by which you can do this but always remember that genuine happiness comes from within. As Abraham Lincoln said:
“Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
Genuine happiness isn‟t about driving the hottest car, nor getting the employee of the year award, or earning the highest month pay.
So, how do you become genuinely happy?. Every one has his own definition of happiness. However, you don’t have to have the best things in this world to be happy. It’s about doing and making the best out of every single thing.
The dictionary defines happiness as:
a: a state of well-being and contentment: joy b : a pleasurable or satisfying experience
When you are contented with the job you have, the way you look, with your family, your friends, the place you live in, your car, and all the things you now have, you are genuinely happy. Every time you exert effort to improve the quality of life and your being, whether it is cleaning up your room, helping a friend, taking care of your sick dog, you are living a satisfying experience.
Therefore happiness comes with contentment and living a satisfying experience.
Being happy doesn’t mean you’re perfect. It just means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfection. K.B
5 Steps To Be Happy
Here are the steps to happiness:
Step 1: Choose to be happy
Like what was mentioned before, being happy is a matter of choice. Choose to look at the positive things in negative situations. Because in looking for positive things, you gain hope no matter how little that positive thing is.
Getting rid of all the negativity is a key to happiness. If you are surrounded by people who are negative, try to distance yourself from them. Aside from outside negative influence, you should also refrain from thinking negative things. Negative thoughts can limit you and what you can do.
Step 2 : Know Yourself
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom”. Aristotle
You have to know yourself in order to be happy. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What do I really want?
- Am I comfortable with what I’m doing?
- Have I done enough for myself?
- Am I happy at where I am today?
- What motivates me?
- Know your purpose. Are you wandering through life with little direction – hoping that you’ll find happiness, health and prosperity? Identify your life purpose and you will have your own unique compass that will lead you to your truth north every time.
- Know your values. What do you value most? Make a list of your top 5 values. Some examples are security, freedom, family, love, and learning. As you set your goals, make sure to check your goals against your values. If the goal doesn’t align with any of your top five values, you may want to reconsider it or revise it.
- Know your needs. Unmet needs can keep you from living authentically. Take care of yourself. Do you have a need to be acknowledged, to be right, to be loved? Make a list your top four needs and get them met before its too late!.
- Know your passions. You know who you are and what you truly enjoy in life. Obstacles like doubt and lack of enthusiasm will only hinder you, but will not derail your chance to become the person you ought to be. Express yourself and honor the people who has inspired you to become the very person you wanted to be.
- Live from the inside out. Increase your awareness and inner wisdom by regularly being in silence. Commune with nature. Breathe deeply to quiet your distracted mind.
- Know and Honor your strengths. What are your positive traits? What special talents do you have? List Three. Find ways to express your authentic self through your strengths. You can increase your self-confidence when you can share what you know to others.
- Serve others. When you live authentically, you may find that you develop an interconnected sense of being. When you are true to who you are, living your purpose and giving of your talents to the world around you, you give back in service what you came to share with others.
“You must love yourself before you love another”.”
To love oneself means to accept that you are not a perfect being, but behind the imperfections must lay a great ounce of courage to be able to discover ways on how to improve your repertoire to recover from mistakes. To love yourself you must develop a healthy self-esteem. In order to have a healthy self-esteem focus on the following tips:
Step 3: Avoid Negative Work Environment
Avoid being surrounded by non-appreciative people. If you get to work too much without getting help from people concerned. Stay out of this; it will ruin your self-esteem. gossipers, whiners, snipers, people walking wounded, controllers, naggers, complainers, exploders, patronizes, all these kinds of people will pose bad vibes for your self-esteem.
Step 4: Let Go of Your Bad Past Experience
It‟s okay to cry and say “ouch!” when we experience pain. But don‟t let pain transform itself into fear. It might grab you by the tail and swing you around. Treat each failure and mistake as a lesson.
Step 5: Build your self esteem.
Self esteem is how you view yourself. People with high self esteem see themselves as a person worthy of good things. They have confidence in who they are and what they can do. So, essentially, they are happy people.
People with high self esteem do not compare themselves to others. They focus all their energy to better their own life. As they are less critical of others, they are able to forge honest and open relationships with them. They imbibe happiness in everything they do and do not dwell too much on their weaknesses and limitations.
Step 6: Change Your Negative World View
Don’t wrap yourself up with all the negativities of the world. In building self-esteem, we must learn how to make the best out of worst situations. In life, it‟s hard to stay tough specially when things and people around you keep pulling you down. Learn to change your attitude, behavior and way of thinking. Building your self-esteem will help you to become responsible for who you are, what you have and what you do.
Self-esteem brings about self-improvement, true assessment, and determination. So be positive, be contented and happy. Be appreciative. A positive way of living will help you build self-esteem.
Step 7: Keep a Positive Attitude
“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”. Winston Churchill
To be happy depends on your frame of mind. Thoughts are very powerful. They affect your general attitude. The attitude you carry reflects on your appearance, and can also affect people around you. The type of attitude you carry depends on you. It can be either positive or negative.
Positive thoughts are invigorating. Negative thoughts on the other hand make you look gloomy and sad. A positive attitude attracts people, while a negative attitude repels them. People tend to shy away from those who carry a negative attitude. A positive attitude promotes better health helps one to handle stress and problems better than those who have a negative attitude.
A positive attitude begins with a healthy self-image. If you will love the way you are and are satisfied, confident, and self-assured, you also make others are around feel the same way. If you feel bad about yourself you make others feel the same way. If you want to have a positive attitude, you have to maintain healthy thoughts. Although it is impossible to keep ourselves from the negative things around us, you can still carry a positive attitude by focusing on the good things.
- Commit to yourself to respond instead of react.
- Practice gratitude.
- Keep humor.
- Believe that you are the architect of your destiny. Take responsibility for your own life.
- Live with passion. Passion will keep you going.
- Decide. Since life offers no guarantee and you would never know that your decision would be wrong until you have made it, then you might as well take the risk and decide. It is definitely better than keeping yourself in limbo. Get as many information as you can about your situation. Identify options. Weigh the pros and cons of every option.
- Trust yourself and make that decision.
- Do random acts of kindness and keep nurturing your relationships.
- Be confident.
Step 8: Relax
Stress is nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness”. Richard Carlson
Everyone suffers from stress. And the stress we suffer takes a heavy toll on our bodies, emotions and minds. Feeling stressed out, worn out by fatigue or just simply having a miserable day, the best thing to do is relax.
Too much stress brings about ischemia that can lead to or cause a heart attack. Relaxation takes on added importance in light of this matter. Managing your anger and attitude is significant to heart health, and relaxation can help you manage stress.
Some ways you can start relaxing
- Practice gratitude.
- Physical Exercise
Why you have to practice relaxation. Because relaxation aside from lowering blood pressure in people and decreasing the chances of a stroke or a heart attack, is because stress produces hormones that suppress the immune system, relaxation gives the immune system time to recover and in doing so function more efficiently. Relaxation lowers the activities within the brains’ limbic system; this is the emotional center of our brain.
Step 9: Healthy life
Leading a healthy life can also make you happy. A healthy mind can help you overcome stressful situations and negative feelings. While a healthy body can make you feel good about yourself. People who do not like how they look and who get stressed easily are seldom happy and fulfilled.
Get fit and exercise regularly. Exercising gives you a sense of pursuing a goal. Achieving that set goal gives you a sense of accomplishment. Make your life more interesting and rewarding by continuing to improve yourself.
How many times have you gone to sleep at night, swearing you’ll go to the gym in the morning, and then changing your mind just eight hours later because when you get up, you don’t feel like exercising?. While this can happen to the best of us, it doesn’t mean you should drop the ball altogether when it comes to staying fit. What people need to realize is that staying active and eating right is critical for long-term health and wellness — and that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
The more you know about how your body responds to your lifestyle choices, the better you can customize a nutrition and exercise plan that is right for you. When you eat well, increase your level of physical activity, and exercise at the proper intensity, you are informing your body that you want to burn a substantial amount of fuel. This translates to burning fat more efficiently for energy.
Engage in regular cardiovascular exercise four times per week for 20 to 30 minutes per session, and resistance training four times per week for 20 to 25 minutes per session. This balanced approach provides a one-two punch, incorporating aerobic exercise to burn fat and deliver more oxygen, and resistance training to increase lean body mass and burn more calories around the block. Here’s a sample exercise program that may work for you:
- Warm Up — seven to eight minutes of light aerobic activity
- Resistance Training — Train all major muscle groups. One to two sets of each exercise. Rest 45 seconds between sets.
- Aerobic Exercise — Pick two favorite activities, they could be jogging, rowing, biking or cross-country skiing, whatever fits your lifestyle.
- Perform 12 to 15 minutes of the first activity and continue with 10 minutes of the second activity. Cool down during the last five minutes.
- Stretching — Wrap up your exercise session by stretching, breathing deeply, relaxing and meditating.
When starting an exercise program, it is important to have realistic expectations. Always see your Family Doctor before starting an exercise program. Once you make the commitment to exercise several times a week, don’t stop there. You should also change your diet:
- Eat several small meals (optimally four) and a couple of small snacks throughout the day
- Make sure every meal is balanced — incorporate palm-sized proteins like lean meats, fish, egg whites and dairy products, fist-sized portions of complex carbohydrates like whole-wheat bread and pasta, wild rice, multigrain cereal and potatoes, and fist-sized portions of vegetable and fruits
- Limit your fat intake to only what’s necessary for adequate flavor
- Drink at least eight 8-oz. glasses of water throughout the day
- I also recommend that you take a multi-vitamin each day to ensure you are getting all the vitamins and minerals your body needs.
Remain positive in everything you do. There are several ways by which you can be happy. But remember that happiness comes from the inside out. Being grateful is a great attitude. Make a list of the things you are grateful. A religious connection is also recommended. Remember to laugh heartily everyday: ‘Laughter is the best medicine’.
Express your feelings, affections, friendship and passion to people around you. If you really want to be happy try not to keep anger or frustrations or resentment. Try and learn something new every day so that you can experience a sense of accomplishment. Run, jog, walk and do other things that your body was made for. Feel alive. Avoid negative people. These are the few simple things you can do everyday to be happy.
Life is for us to take. How we choose to live it is up to us. We should not be threatened by the things that we can not control. Instead, face it with a smile and do everything we can to deal with that situation. Also, we should not blame other for the things that we can control. Instead, improve yourself and avoid excuses.
Life is not all rainbows and candies all the time. It is designed to be challenging at times so that we can develop and improve ourselves so we can overcome the future. Life is too precious to be whiled away in sadness. So, smile and choose to be happy.