Oh, the topic of happiness! It's that one thing that everyone tries to strive for in life. I mean, let's face it. How many times have you heard someone say "All I want in life is to be happy." I think I've even said this a time or two or 500. My dad always told me that the world would be so a better place if people just choose to be happy. And he's right! But you have to choose to be happy!
Now I'm not saying your world has to be rainbows and sunshine each and every day, and if that's what you think I'm getting at, please keep reading because choosing happiness is actually kind of tough, but kind of simple at the same time. Life is going to throw you some twists and turns. Life is going to get tough. In those seasons, it's going to be harder to practice happiness, but hopefully, if you start to incorporate happiness into your daily life, your practice will become second nature.
1. Do what brings you joy
Ever heard the saying "you can't pour into others unless you fill your cup first"? Me neither, because I think I might have made that wording up... Nevertheless, the message has been passed around for some time. You have to find the little things throughout each and every day that give you a little spark of joy and fill your cup. You get to choose what that may be from hobbies to work to hanging out with family and friends.
2. Take time for you
This. Is. So. Important. If you are go, go, go all of the time, often what happens is you become worn down, out of energy, and happiness runs dry. Rest is so important to foster happiness in your life. This means getting those proper 7-8 hours of sleep and finding other ways to rest too. Yep, I'll be honest, I like to rest by coloring in a coloring book. It keeps me young too!
3. Give back to others
Have you ever served at a community event or performed a random act of kindness for someone else? Remember the feeling that you had after giving and serving? It's the happiness you create from seeing the people on the receiving end so grateful and full of joy, yet you expect nothing in return. That, my friends, is my favorite place to find happiness.
Fuel gives cars energy, good foods give people energy. Scroll back up to No. 2 and notice that if you are out of energy, happiness runs dry. Fuel your body with nutrients so that you have the energy to not only make it through the day but thrive through the day. Good fuel with good company also is a great way to find happiness!
5. Be grateful for what you have.
So often we don't take time to pause and be grateful for what we have or how far we've come. Girl! (or boy, I don't discriminate!) You worked hard to be where you are at! Take credit for it and be thankful for all the opportunities you have been given. If you take time to reflect on your amazingness, you won't have time to compare yourself to others. And as we all know, comparison is the thief of joy.
6. Surround yourself with good people
We all have those friends who are negative nancies. (Sorry Nancy!) and that's okay, maybe even share this post with them and help foster happiness in their life! But we also need those friends who are lights in our lives and want to encourage us as we encourage them. Go find the cheerleaders, but don't forget to be a cheerleader too.
7. Give yourself a pep talk
My fave. Look at yourself in the mirror. Now put your hands on your hips, puff up your chest, and tell yourself you're awesome. Because you are! You can accomplish whatever life throws at you, you are enough, and you are worthy. Be your own advocate.
"Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don't kill their husbands."--Elle Woods. I think that's all the explanation needed here.
9. Focus on what you CAN control
Things you can't control: other people's opinions of you, what will happen tomorrow, what your future looks like, your health, actions of other people. Dwelling on things that you can't control leads to comparison (the thief of joy), worry, fear, anger, and frustration. Does that sound like happiness to you?? Things you can control: what you eat for breakfast, what shoes you wear, how you style your hair. Simple things that you can control--focus on those.
10. Chose happiness over everything else
Above all else, you have to make the choice to choose happiness. Again, not every day is going to be perfect. Actually, no day is ever perfect. Life is hard. Negativity might slip into the back of your mind, but it's your choice what energy you bring into your life. I choose happiness.