Happiness is a Choice
Let's talk about happiness.
What is it? and where does it comes from?
Why does sustained happiness elude so many people? And how do we get more of it?
One day the answer came to me.
Happiness is a choice.
It's not always easy to decide to be happy in a moment of frustration.
But allowing happiness into your life and deciding you will be happy is a choice.
Let's break down what happiness is and how you can feel happy today, and every other day.
I'll also share some specific steps I use in my own life to live each day from an emotional baseline of happiness.
Lets dive in...
What Does it Mean to Be Happy?
What is the key to your happiness?
Everyone has unique perceptual filters that determine how they see the world.
Your filtered perception of the world around you combines with your beliefs, values and experience.
All these create what you call 'reality'.
Richard Bandler, founder of NLP says that people’s model of the world is as unique as their thumbprint.
What that means for us is that we all have our own definition of happiness.
I see happiness as living with a sense of meaning, purpose, and personal fulfilment.
How Do You Define Happiness?
How do you define your own happiness?
Think about your happiest times. What about those times were “happy?"
If you intend to find happiness you first need to define for yourself what happiness is.
Most of our happiness comes from the simple things.
Laughing with your children. Playing with your dog.
Being in an environment of pure natural beauty.
How you define happiness will be personal for you.
Don’t blindly follow what you're told will make you happy.
That's something you need to decide for yourself.
How Often Do You Feel Happy?
Think about yourself for a moment.
How often do you feel happy?
Is happiness your default state? Is it a rare occurrence that randomly appears?
It’s easy to fall into a mundane routine of everyday life.
You can live on autopilot without stopping to assess if what you are doing is truly making you feel happy.
What's ironic is that people aren't happy. They freely admit it.
But they don't do anything to change it.
There is a formula to happiness.
How you perceive yourself, your experiences, where you are now, and the life you have ahead of you.
Happiness is a choice. A decision.
Deciding to Choose Happiness
If happiness is a choice, how do you ‘choose’ to be happy?
The choice isn't simple or easy. Though sometimes it is.
Happiness comes when your mind and body work in alignment with your vision of what happiness is.
This is personal and will be different for everyone.
Your autonomous habitual thoughts drive your actions and the direction of your life.
Happiness starts in your mind.
How to Choose Happiness
It takes a conscious decision and repeated practice to “rewire” your brain.
Rewiring your brain is reprogramming your mind.
You're overwriting your current neurology, and creating new synaptic connections.
Who you are is a result of how you think.
Upgrade your brain with new and better software and your performance will improve.
Think about something you want in your life.
Something that gets you excited.
Your transition to happiness has begun.
What Have You Been Choosing?
What have you chosen up to this point?
It's not hard to fall into autopilot. Living in reaction.
Rarely stopping to think.
Entering into a period of introspection is a powerful tool.
You will identify areas of weakness.
Areas of strength. What you want. What you don't want.
When you have clarity you to make better choices. Better decisions.
Your mind is better able to deal with everything thats going on around you, and inside you
Happiness Comes From Within
No-One Else Can Make You Happy
Don’t ever believe the lie that someone else will make you happy. Happiness starts in your own mind.
A child's brain develops by making millions of new neurological connections every day.
What things are, what things mean, and their own relationship with the world around them.
Billions of bits of information are being feed into the brain.
All these bits add onto each other and form your beliefs, values and character traits.
You can be more of the best of you and to delete certain other parts.
Get rid of what doesn't make you happy.
Are You Happy Most of the Time?
How do you feel today? How about yesterday?
Are you generally happy? If you say yes, great. If not, why not?
What needs to change so the needle shifts towards happiness, even if only a few points.
Wether you say you're happy or not happy depends on what you mean by happy.
It also depends on the meaning you given to whatever your happy or unhappy about.
Different Levels of Happiness
There are different levels of happiness you will experience.
There’s short term fleeting happiness you feel when you attend a self-help seminar or buy a new car.
It feels great for a while. A quick buzz. But it doesn't make you happy.
There’s a level of happiness you feel when you achieve a goal or experience personal triumph.
The pleasurable feelings reinforce the desire to do it again.
Then there's Life changing happiness that makes life worth living.
Holding your child in your arms. Recovery from a life threatening illness.
When these things happen you feel intense gratitude and appreciation for what you have.
1. Do What You Enjoy
Being happy starts with being true to yourself.
Knowing and being who your are.
Configuring life in a way that brings you meaning and fulfilment as a result
That thing you so enjoy doing. Do that.
What have you never done but always wanted to?
What are two areas that you are willing to work for?
2. Be Authentic
Let your full personality shine through.
Don't hide from yourself or be someone else to please other people.
Be a person you respect and stand forthright in the world.
Start shedding any emotional baggage you've been carrying around with you.
You don't need it anymore.
The more layers of garbage you peel away the more you become the real you.
3. Have Worthwhile Goals and Objectives
Establish some worthy goals and ambitions.
As you pursue them it will keep you alive and engaged with life.
Many have retired from being once active to now doing nothing. They feel disconnected.
Lost without a definite purpose.
Always be pursuing something.
4 Pieces of a Happy Life
Live a life that makes you feel proud.
The things you’re doing that you know you shouldn’t be doing.
The ones that have long-term detrimental effects on your life. Stop doing those things.
Improve your lifestyle. Start small.
One small improvement at a time.
Get momentum and keep growing.
2. Physical Health
Keep your body in good shape and take care of your physical health.
Mind and body are two parts of the same system.
Strength in one reinforces strength in the other.
You don’t have to be a marathon runner or an elite athlete.
But you do have to do something that will move you towards a better physical condition.
Eat better than you eat now. Eat less. Move your body more.
Take your training routine to the next level.
Wherever you are on the continuum, take yourself beyond.
3. Psychological Health
Since reality is a construct of your mind, cultivate exceptional psychological health.
Jim Rohn said “Every day you must stand guard at the doorway of your mind”.
You must stand guard because your mind is susceptible to negativity.
Look after your mind like you would a young child.
Protect it and influence it in the best way you know how.
Feed your mind with good stuff. Information. Thoughts. Images New concepts, knowledge, and wisdom.
4. Emotional Health
Keep your emotions in check. Maintain self-control.
Show emotional intelligence.
Prisons are full of people who let their emotions control them. Even for a few seconds.
It changed the direction of their lives.
Emotional health and intelligence gives you more control over your direct experience.
You control your emotions. They don't control you.
Everything starts and finishes with you.
So what about you?
Are you living in happiness? Or have you let life get on top of you.
If you've let your happiness fall on your ladder of priorities now's a good time to move it back up.
The key to your happiness is You.
Best Quotes About Choosing to be Happy
"Happiness is not by chance, but by choice" – Jim Rohn
"Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions" – Dalai Lama
"Happiness is a choice that requires effort at times" – Aeschylus
"The key to being happy is knowing you have the power to choose what to accept and what to let go" – Dodinsky
"Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that it is" – Mandy Hale