Happiness. It’s the goal we strive for and how we measure self-achievement. You may believe you’ll be “happy” once you get that raise you’ve been after. Perhaps your happiness rests on buying a new house or trading in your car. It might mean a certain salary, number of friends or the freedom to travel as you please. Or, maybe, it’s in a strong relationship with an amazing partner. Whatever the cause, chances are that you, too, are chasing happiness. The thing about happiness, however, is that it’s the product of making a conscious decision to experience the feeling. No amount of money, no beautiful home and no perfect partner can truly make you happy if you don’t choose to be so. The same can be said for the reverse – I’ve met many fantastic, over-the-moon happy people over the years that are incredibly humble and content to live within small means. It all comes down to choice.
In this post, I’d like to share with you a few ways to make the conscious effort to live more happily. You might be surprised at how much happiness is just sitting there waiting for you in your everyday life. Read on, friend!
5. Take Inventory of Your Surroundings
When you woke up this morning, was it in a reasonably comfortable bed with covers and a pillow? Were you able to choose from a closet of clothes and brush your teeth with clean, drinkable water? These simple, basic things are so often taken for granted when other people are quite literally praying for them. You are incredibly fortunate, probably more than you’ll ever know, and have the unique opportunity to choose how you spend your life.
For 3-5 minutes a day, I urge you to sit on your bed and stay quiet. Take a mental inventory of the many fortunes you’ve experienced throughout the day – from a meal at lunch to a safe and reliable way to get home. Look around you, right in your very own room, and take inventory of your belongings and ability to feel at ease in your own space. I’m betting that you’ll begin to appreciate your surroundings and start to feel happier.
4. Go Exploring… on a Trail or in Your Own Backyard
Nature has the remarkable ability to remind of us our smallness in the world and yet motivate us to see the beauty in nearly everything – including our own lives. Head out to the local trails for a relaxing walk or even just toss on those gardening shoes and head out to your own backyard. Allowing yourself to focus on nature and your surroundings will free up space in your mind for positive, happy thoughts. It’s pretty hard to focus on anything negative when there’s so much beauty and life surrounding you!
To kick it up a notch, slip in a comfy pair of ear buds or grab a portable speaker and listen to your favourite tunes. An upbeat, happy song will help make the most of the experience and have you feeling energized and ready to conquer just about anything in no time.
3. Tidy Your Space
Remember back when you were in high school or university and found it difficult to concentrate in a messy space? How we keep the spaces around us strongly impacts how we feel inside. A messy, cluttered room can leave you feeling anxious and down. A clean, tidy space can have the opposite effect. If you want to re-energize and start feeling upbeat, I recommend doing a little cleaning. Once the clutter’s cleared, you’ll start to feel happier and more accomplished almost instantly.
If your life’s simply too hectic to keep a clean house, consider hiring a cleaning service to come by even once every couple of weeks. The delight and surprise you’ll feel when you come home to a clean house at the end of the day can make all the difference sometimes! Just be sure to carefully review the cleaning rates ahead of time because a big bill will have those happy feelings flying away just as quickly as they arrived.
2. Sleep More
This one’s so simple. Just sleep more! Our bodies are under a ton of stress on a daily basis, both conscious and subconscious. Sometimes, we simply don’t get enough REM sleep and deep, restful Zs to help us fully recharge. When you start the day feeling sleepy and irritable, you can bet it’s not going to improve as the hours wear on. So, why not put in a little effort and try to catch a few more winks?
Hit the hay earlier during the week and allow yourself to hit “snooze” a couple of times come the weekend. The world will keep turning while you enjoy an extra thirty minutes of sleep and you’ll awake feeling more refreshed, and happier, because of it.
1. Talk it Out
Have you ever heard the expression, “Just let it all out?” Sometimes, people just need to vent. This is when it’s great to have someone in your life, like a friend or family member, who you can call up or meet with to talk it out. Was your week especially tough and you really feel as though you need to get a few things off of your chest? Do it! And, if you don’t feel as though you have anyone you can call up right this moment, consider leaving a comment on this post so I can hear your thoughts.
Friend, happiness is waiting for you. In fact, it’s really already here – it’s up to you to see it and allow yourself to feel it. If you have any other tips you’d like to share, please leave them in the comments section! I’d love to hear from you.
To your authenticity,