By Ann: First, stop trying to be happy. You can’t buy happiness and you can’t achieve happiness. Pleasure is not happiness. Pleasure and money are a false god. They are superficial and materialistic, and this does not result in true happiness. People today have grown up being told they are special and unique, and Facebook is constantly telling us how amazing everyone’s lives are. Social media gives a false sense of security and sucks people into believing their life must be boring compared to others and can make people feel a failure. In fact, failure teaches us how to be successful. It is not unhealthy to feel different emotions, like sadness or anger.
The secret is how to manage these emotions. For example, you may feel angry with someone and express that feeling, but you control yourself and don’t act in a physical way to hurt someone. No one can be positive all the time and it’s okay to feel down. Having hobbies and pursuing realistic achievements can make us feel happy because it’s not the result, but the process of trying and overcoming obstacles and getting satisfaction from this.
William Shakespeare said, “Expectation is the root of all heartache.”
Appreciate what you have and surround yourself with family and friends and enjoy these moments. It is the little things in life that can matter and can help you to feel grateful for what you have. You can learn from past experiences and your mistakes don’t define who you are. Helping other people and volunteering, even helping a friend out and caring for others is a source of inner happiness and gives you a sense of worth.
The Dalai Lama said, “For a happy life, physical well-being is important, but true wellness must include a happy mind.”
Try to cultivate a positive mental attitude and calmness to live happy and joyful. Having compassion for all living beings and building close, intimate relationships helps our physical and mental wellbeing. Try to be conscious of your spirituality, not any specific religion which can be qualities like goodness, kindness, compassion, peace, and self-control. Don’t give in to hatred and anger and greed, as these emotions do not bring lasting happiness. Smiling is a good start to feel good and bring happiness to others and draw people to you. Be grateful for the things you have in life rather than what you don’t have. Everyone’s vision of happiness is different for each person. Cultivating good habits and a good daily routine can help and ridding your life of bad habits will lead to a healthier lifestyle.
Try daily to smile, exercise, get plenty of sleep, eat well, be grateful, give compliments, breathe deeply. Keeping a journal is a good way to organize your thoughts and analyze your feelings. Simply by jotting down a few thoughts before bed. These can always be shredded later and in that way, you have dealt with a problem or emotion. Stress is a part of everyday life and sometimes cannot be avoided. Learning to deal with problems head on and tackle them you will feel better and can move on. Prioritize your life and put the important things first and the people in your life that matter. Put them first in your life and learn from stress in your life and how to better and how to handle things next time you are in a similar situation. Take care of your body and take care of your soul which can include belonging to social groups for example, religious or volunteer groups and forming meaningful relationships. Having goals and sticking to them and seeing them through to the end will give you a sense of accomplishment and you will feel good about yourself.
Love and Light,