Living your Best Life
1.Happiness is a choice – you can make it a daily choice to be happy. Happiness is a perspective. How do you view life? Do you see the glass half empty or half full? The choice is yours? Change your thoughts and you change your actions. Change your self – talk. Instead of works such as: Should, Could, Would or maybe. Change your words to I choose, It’s my choice, etc. Pick more positive words. Talk to yourself in a kinder, gentler tone.
What you think = Feel = Believe = who you are!
- Gratitude is a daily exercise you can add to your day both in the morning and in the night. We call this “Gratitude Checks” This removes the clutter and allows you to see the good in your life. Each morning when you wake up and each night before you go to bed, ask yourself: What am I grateful for?
- Pay it forward – the happiest people are helping others. It’s a win-win situation. By helping others, you are getting a boost of happiness. Every time you pay it forward, you feel the happiness instantly.
- Emotional Detox – Being positive or negative is contagious. If you’re exposed to negativity on a constant basis, you will feel it; it will affect your mood. If you want to feel more positive, surround yourself with positive people. Toxic people are draining. Who in your life is toxic? Why are they still in your life? If you can remove them from your life and you haven’t. You need to ask yourself: What need of mine is this person meeting in my life?
- Strong sense of self – the happiest people know who they are. They know their likes, dislikes, interests, skills, strengths, etc.
- Creativity and variety – always adding new things and trying new things is a key factor of happiness. We get caught in patterns and become fearful of new things this can lead to feeling stale/stagnate.
- On going learning – we are happiest when we are always learning both professionally and personally. Learning doesn’t have to be limited to the classroom or at a job. We also learn “informally” through debates, discussions, current events, movie, books, etc. Learning = growing.
- The main factor of happiness is socialization. Long term happiness depends a lot on relationships, friends, family and community. The saying is true; Quality is way more important then quantity.
- Momentary Moments – we also need a few happiness moments during the week. These are activities or people who bring you a burst of happiness for 24-72 hours. Example: Going to lunch with a good friend. Just spending time with a friend brings me a burst of happiness for 1-2 days. What brings you happiness – reading, writing, sports, spending time with loved ones, etc? Whatever it is, do it and feel the happiness.
- Smiling and laughter – is a great way to reduce stress and feel better instantly. You can even fake it. If your not happy, try faking a smile or a laugh, you will end up feeling better. Even the silliness of faking a smile or a laugh is enough to get a good mood going.
- Higher power/spirituality – the happiest people believe there is something else out there. It doesn’t have to be about religion, just a belief that we are not alone. A belief that there is something more.
- Flow – this is when you are so involved with an activity that you forget about everything else. You forget what time it is, that the phone rang, etc. It doesn’t matter if you finish the activity or if you win or lose at the activity, none of that matters because you’re in “Flow”. Make sure to add flow into your life. You should feel flow during hobbies, interests, activities and for some at their job.
- The happiest people live in the moment. They are in the here and now. Learn from your past; plan for your future but live for today.
- Re-define the American dream – the dream is no longer a house, white picket fence, 2.5 kids and a spouse. The dream is whatever you make it. By trying to follow the American dream, we set ourselves up for failure. The American dream doesn’t mean it’s your dream or that the dream is realistic. Write down what your American dream looks like. What is realistic for you not what society says? We put ourselves in debt due to the American dream. We try to “Keep up with the Jones”; this just adds more pressure to our lives and our families. Always re-define the dream to be your dream. Remember, it’s ok for your dreams to change as long as you’re still dreaming.