Tag Archives: happiness

The Way of Happiness

There are key happiness tactics and strategies that have shown to increase happiness. To be happy requires skills. 

Happiness Is Not Supposed to Be Elusive

Happiness is not supposed to be an abstract ideal. Instead, it should be readily available wherever you go. 

7 Principles of Happiness

  • Focus on fulfillment
  • Dedicate more time to your values
  • Set a personal happiness level
  • Drive from happiness
  • Avoid the “if-then” trap
  • Increase frustration tolerance
  • Concentrate on purpose

Core Concepts

There are three primary concepts that are important in your happiness journey:

  • Happiness is personal.
  • Happiness is not static; it is a verb.
  • There are two happiness questions: “How happy are you with your life?” and “how happy are you?”

Bonus Tactics

Strategies are effective but you need practical tactics for things to work out:

  • Keep your eyes on the greater good.
  • Act “as if”.
  • Cultivate happiness under you.
  • Find your best happiness quotes.
  • Look for a better metaphor (e.g. life is a dance).
  • Adjust your questions for different results.
  • Adjust your thoughts.

Take a closer look at the principles.

Focus on Fulfillment

When you focus on living life meaningfully, you will be more careful while making choices and creating moments. To do this, you must decide who you want to be and the kind of experiences you would like to create. If you want to focus on fulfilment, set your eyes on the greater good.

Dedicate More Time to Your Values

Living out your values helps you add happiness into your daily life. For people that spend the better part of their day working, try linking your job to your values. If excellence is important to you, make the work all about excellence. When more time is dedicated to your values, the journey becomes more enjoyable.

Set a Personal Happiness Level

Everyone has a personal happiness level. Embrace your level and begin from there. Look for simple ways through which you can improve your happiness level gradually. Avoid comparing your happiness levels to that of others.

Drive from Happiness

Happiness must be a decision. 

Here, you must look deep within you and answer some very tough questions. What would you like to make more time for? What is it that makes you happy? What do you want to do? Instead of doing what everyone else expects of you, look for what makes you happy.

Avoid the “If-Then” Trap

Your happiness should not depend on an event that you expect to happen in the future, such as a relationship, job, etc. have your happiness “right here” rather than “out there”. Have fun with the journey. Work with what you have.

Increase Your Frustration Tolerance

A higher frustration tolerance can translate to a higher happiness level. This insight works instantly. You just need to decide not to be frustrated with the little disappointments of life.

Concentrate on Purpose

What you focus on is what you get. Start focusing on better scenes and see what happens. Human beings set goals and do everything within their power to chase after them. They either attain the goals or drop dead. Once one goal has been achieved, they set another one and it goes on and on.

This is how people are wired. America is in a time of abundance—much more like never in human history. Basic needs are generally met for everyone and, therefore, you think the only goals left to set are money goals. You aspire to earn a certain amount of income, build investments, and savings to a certain level and create a passive income stream. You set these goals so you can live the lifestyle of your choice and spend some time with your loved ones.

You also want to be financially independent. To put it simply, you are trying to be happy and according to you, more money means happiness. Now, suppose you have all the money you desire in your bank account. You have finally achieved financial independence. You have enough time to spend with the ones you love, and you can go wherever you want—money is unlimited. Will you be happy? Sure, initially.

However, once the ecstatic stage of travel, binge purchases and whatever else is over, you will be bored to death. You may find yourself lonely and depressed—something common to many famous and rich people. Why the unhappiness? Everyone wants to succeed, but success feels better when it is earned instead of undeservedly handed out.

To be truly happy, you need to pursue and attain your lifestyle goals. This is common sense but how true is it? Some people pursue their goals, become successful but they are still unhappy. What is missing? You have a need to overcome your obstacles, accomplish, and achieve your goal. For human beings, the pursuit is the end, not the means to an end. Without it, you will be rich yet miserable, well-traveled yet depressed, financially independent yet bored.

The lifestyle you seek reflects the connection you yearn for. For example, experiences are only full when shared with loved ones. To be happy, you need to integrate and balance your drive for pursuit and connection. Your love for the chase should be anchored to the reason for the chase. However, is that all there is to it? If you are successful in what you do and have healthy connections, will there be anything eating you up?

Yes. There is one more piece to the puzzle. Once your basic needs (pursuit) and psychological needs (connection) have been fulfilled, the missing piece is self-actualization. To achieve total happiness, you must achieve your full potential and use your talents to the maximum. Calogero from a scene in A Bronx Tale says that: “the saddest thing in life is wasted talent, and the choices that you make will shape your life forever.” 

“The majority of men meet with failure of their lack of persistence in creating new plans to take the place of those which fail.” 

-Napoleon Hill

What Is Your Definition Of Happiness?

How do you define happiness? According to research in the domain of positive psychology and happiness, a happy person is defined as one who experiences positive emotions such as pride, interest, and joy frequently and does not, on a regular basis, experience negative emotions like anger, sadness, and anxiety (Lyubomirsky et al., 2005).

Happiness is also related to satisfaction in life: life, appreciation, and moments of pleasure.  An important note about these definitions is that the presence of positive emotions does not mean that negative emotions are absent. A happy person will experience a range of emotions like any other person, but the frequency of negative emotions differs. Maybe, happy people do not experience negative emotion as much because they find meaning and process it differently than others.

Actually, it is probably incorrect to use the phrase “happy person” because it assumes that good things always happen to them or they are naturally happy. Life’s stressors affect everyone. The difference is in how you perceive them, as moments of opportunity or moments of opposition. Each person defines happiness in his or her own way.

Politicians, actors, philosophers, have all made a contribution based on their view. Here are some of the best definitions. According to ancient Greeks, happiness is the joy that people feel when they are working to reach their potential. Shirley MacLaine, who is an Academy Award winner, asserted that to be happy, you must be willing to “be compliant without knowing”. For Michael J. Fox, his happiness is directly proportional to his acceptance and indirectly proportional to his expectations.

The founder of Daily Love, Mastin Kipp, says that “he does not expect to be happy always, he simply accepts what is”. That acceptance, to him, is key. Self-love is all about this, acceptance and being able to love yourself where you are. Gabrielle Bernstein said that, “choosing happiness is the path of least resistance.”

According to Aristotle, “happiness is a state of activity.” Dr. Shefali Tsabary said that you could only be truly fulfilled and happy when you fill your own needs and feel satisfied from within. Eleanor Roosevelt said that she was once asked what she considered the three top most requirements for happiness.

Her answer was: it is the feeling that comes with knowing that you have been honest with those around you and yourself, knowing that you have given your best in your work and personal life, and being able to love other people.

The best thing about these definitions is that they share some commonalities. Michael J. Fox and Shirley MacLaine talk about accepting life situations and uncertainties. The more you can do that, the happier you are likely to become. Mastin Kipp says it is okay to accept whatever you are feeling and not strive for happiness.

Acknowledgement takes you to the happy space faster since your emotions are not striving for your attention. Aristotle also has an important point about happiness; staying active. Happiness is easily found when you are doing what you love and building meaningful connections.  

The Secret to Happiness

Monetary wealth is not what you need to be happy. You may not want to hear this but it is the truth. Anyone can access happiness. 

Many people work towards financial freedom and get disappointed when they learn that it does not come with happiness. 

You can be happy right this moment, regardless of the troubles in your life or your current financial situation. 

Money and Happiness: The Truth

When you have financial freedom, your life becomes self-determined and not predetermined. You can no longer make excuses for having a less than ideal life. Your happiness becomes your responsibility. 

People who work every day have a predetermined life. Most of their time is spent working. They spend the remaining time catching up with family and running errands. They barely have time to build a unique life destiny. 

After you gain financial freedom, you suddenly have all the time in the world. Your days are not predetermined and you can do whatever you want. You cannot blame your unhappiness on anyone. This becomes a burden for many people. 

When Reality Strikes…

Retiring young, having attained financial freedom is an unexplainable feeling. And it is even better when you have a significant other to share the experience with. But like many people, your happiness will be short lived. 

You spend all your time working hard—thinking that all you need is financial freedom and then you will be personally free. 

That is not how it works. 

Even after financial freedom, you will still be the same person. Your personal issues will still be with you. The only difference is that you will have more time to see the truth. And this time, you won’t have work as a distraction. 

You will realize that what you really needed was not financial freedom but personal freedom. 

Some people may slip into mental issues while others will find themselves on a personal growth journey. 

Daily Happiness Accountability

Your thoughts determine your happiness. If you want to be happy, have the right frame of mind. If you can’t come up with happiness thoughts off the top of your head, here are a few to get you started. 

Choose Happiness

  • Choose not to be unhappy.
  • Let happiness be a direct choice; not dependent on anything.
  • You don’t need favorable events to be happy.
  • Don’t postpone happiness.
  • Work from a happy place.
  • Don’t limit your happiness.
  • Misery, just like happiness, is an option.

Let Go of Judgments

  • Have an accepting attitude.
  • Don’t complain, shame or blame.
  • Be compassionate toward others.
  • Believe that everything is for the best.
  • Don’t focus on other people’s businesses.
  • Choose how you react to events.

Be Present

  • You are unhappy because you worry about the future or regret the past.

Be Grateful

  • Don’t take anything for granted.
  • Live in your blessing.
  • Appreciate every little miracle.
  • Be thankful for what you have now.
  • Begin your day with active gratitude.

Strong Social Connection

  • Be authentic.
  • Simplify yourself. Have one face.

Live with Contribution

  • Make someone else’s day.
  • Serve a bigger purpose.
  • Give happiness to experience happiness.