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Ways For You To Choose Happiness

More to happiness than positive thoughts

People may tell you to think “happy thoughts” or to think positively if you want to be happy. And they would be right, and, they would be wrong. Happiness is a mindset, a powerful feeling. If you want to be happy it takes more than just positive thoughts. It also takes positive action. 

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While the dictionary defines happiness as “the state of being happy” which gives you very little information about the idea or feeling of, or state of happiness. Let’s look at some different things that happiness can be, but realize that in truth, happiness is in the mind of the beholder.

You have what you need  

When a person is happy, they usually don’t even have any needs that aren’t being met to the level they want them to be met. It doesn’t mean that someone is not having a hard time it’s all about how you make what you have fill your needs.

You feel satisfied

When you are happy you tend to feel simply satisfied with your life. You think about your life and feel good about it. You feel very satisfied when you look around your life and see all the fortune you have whether it’s where you live, who you live with, or just about yourself doesn’t even matter.

You’re contented

A happy person tends to feel really content about the things in their life. They feel content about their job, their home, their things, their health – nothing is nagging at their mind about anything causing stress. But remember happy people do have stress, they’re just better at feeling content even when things aren’t perfect.

You feel peaceful

A happy person often feels a lot of peace surrounding their life and family. They tend to know that everything will turn out okay and are good at turning negativity into positivity.

You define your happiness

The truth is, happiness is how you define it personally for you. It’s not about getting tons of stuff unless you want that. It’s not about finding a spouse unless you want that. It’s not about having kids unless you want that. It’s all up to you and  your definition of  happiness.

It’s a journey

Happiness is not a destination that you get to one day and stay at. It’s a lifelong journey that will have many ups and downs and struggles. However, overall the ups and downs of life, you manage to feel good about it. In the 1989 movie, “Parenthood” one of the main characters, a mother, who is struggling states that she loves “the roller-coaster” of life while her husband is struggling and not as happy because he focuses on the downs instead of the ups.

How you act

When you are happy you tend to act in more positive ways over all. When happy, you eat better, you move more, you think differently. Don’t worry. You have it in your power to be happy where you are in your life right now.

Happiness is more than thinking positive thoughts. Happiness is having your needs met, but it’s not about having everything, or even the best, it’s about being satisfied with what you have while also being able to work for the things you want. While you do have to do more than think positively to really and truly feel happy, it does start with your thoughts. However, it will manifest with your actions. 

For another look at happiness see my past post, Acting How You Want To Feel.

Five ways being happy is important

You probably have happiness as one of your life goals, whether it’s explicit or not. It’s probably up there with being healthy, wealthy, and wise! There are some solidly good reasons why it’s important to be happy, and some of them will surprise you.

1.   Happiness feels marvelous

Happiness is wonderful purely for its own sake. When you’re happy, you feel energetic and content. All is right with your world, and you naturally want to spread your good vibes.

2.   Being happy is good for your overall health

When you’re happy, you flood your brain with endorphins and other positive hormones like dopamine and serotonin. Your stress levels go down, along with your blood pressure and your heart rate.

Happy people are more resilient in the face of life’s stress; they tend to be better able to roll with the punches and come up smiling. If you’re happy, you’re less likely to suffer from heart disease, inflammation, and chronic disease. You’ll age better and even live longer!

3.   Success doesn’t mean a thing without happiness

Every day you can read about successful, wealthy people whose lives are out of control due to the pressures of celebrity, drug addiction, or alcoholism. Their success hasn’t automatically meant happiness for them. So, if you think that being rich or having a new car or being famous will make you happy, think again. If you hate your life, no amount of success will bring you joy.

4.   Happy people have better relationships

Happiness is contagious and attractive. We see happy people as more trustworthy and stronger leaders. They are also likely to have a wider circle of friends, have better interpersonal relationships, and are more likely to have a romantic partner.

5.   Being happy makes you a nicer person

It seems that happiness and empathy are linked. Happy people are more likely to share their good fortune and help others.

Happy people are also less violent and more peaceful. Researchers think that positive emotions make us more likely to seek a win/win solution and change the way we think.  

“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions”.

   Dalai Lama XIV

Four truths of happiness

Stop for a moment and think about what true happiness is. Guaranteed it’s not a new car or a big house. True happiness comes from within and isn’t dependent on possessions. You can find real happiness in the following truths.

1.   Happiness is found in a full life

You can be happy even if things in your life aren’t going the way you planned. A full life has ups and downs, setbacks as well as achievements. Happiness means finding meaning in whatever is happening around and to you. Being grateful for whatever you’re experiencing will make for a happier, more satisfying life.

2.   Your happiness doesn’t depend on other people

Often people put their happiness in the hands of others. They need external validation to feel good. But relying on other people’s good opinion of you isn’t a healthy way to live.

Check in with how you feel deep in your heart, do the best you can, and let other people worry about themselves.

3.   Happiness is not pretending

Social media is full of people pretending to have perfect lives. They don’t. No one does. The happiness you see on TV or your social media feed may be genuine, maybe not. But remember everyone is showing the best of their lives. Likely a lot of them are pretending to be happier than they are. No one is going to post their latest fight or talk about being fired.

So, the online world you see, that’s full of promotions, and happy families is an illusion. The real world is much more nuanced, and real happiness doesn’t happen in a bubble.

4.   Your happiness comes from within you

It might sound like a truism/cliché, but true happiness does come from within yourself. If you expect someone else to make you happy, whether it’s a partner, friend or child, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. And giving them an unrealistic and unfair responsibility. The only person responsible for your happiness is you.

True happiness comes from a deep connection to yourself, from self-knowing and self-acceptance. And once you have that, all your relationships will be energized and happier. 

Many thanks if you share this post with your family and friends.

Acting The Way You Want To Feel

 

Why Acting How You Want to Feel is Important

We all want to maximize our potential in life, to achieve our goals, be happy and experience fulfillment. In the end, we all want our dreams to come true. The trick is how do we make this happen? There is plenty of information out there as regards to maximizing your potential, reaching your goals, or making your dreams come true. Which bit of information can you believe? Which one is right for you? Better yet, which one works?

 

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One of the best ways to determine what will work for you is through trial and error. You certainly want a technique or program that will provide actual, tangible benefits when you put that information to work. One of the most effective self-improvement techniques out there is acting how you want to feel. Check out this post from the usual bliss ACT the way you want to FEEL.

This technique is based on the simple concept that just as thoughts influence actions, actions have the power to influence thoughts, and by extension feelings. Many of us go through life allowing feelings to dictate our actions. If we feel positive emotions, we take positive actions that achieve the positive results we desire. However, by feeling negative emotions, we take negative actions that cause negative consequences.

We’ve all heard about the power of positive thinking. If you think positively, then you get those powerful, positive results that allow you to reach your goals. The problem is that positive thinking cannot be faked. You can pretend to have a positive attitude. You may fool the outside world that you are actually positive. However, a fake positive attitude cannot fool the real judge – you. Unless you truly experience positive emotions, you will continue to take negative actions and produce negative results. It’s that simple. If you want to learn about the power of positive thoughts check out this post from Mindvalley The Power Of Positive Thoughts.

The theory of positive thinking has actually got the concept completely backward. It’s not positive thinking that’s powerful. It’s actually positive actions that are powerful. You see, when you act in a certain way, your actions have the ability to influence your thoughts. Even if the actions feel forced or awkward, they still have consequences. You still see results from those actions. These results reinforce the strength of those actions. As a result, your actions begin to have an effect on your outlook and your emotions. You begin to feel the way you’ve been acting.

 

What Does It Mean To Act How You Want to Feel?

Have you ever wondered why you feel the way that you feel sometimes? Have you ever done something and then, at a later time, or even immediately wondered why you acted the way you did? If your answer to either of these questions is yes, you’re not alone. We all, at one time, have regretted doing or not doing something, saying or not saying something. The thing is, there is absolutely no reason to have these regrets.

We all, at one time or another, have felt we were being held hostage by our feelings. Negative emotions, prevent us from fully enjoying all the wonderful things that life has to offer. These negative emotions can take many forms – shyness, fear, or lack of confidence to name a few. The thing that they all have in common is that they prevent us from getting those things that we really want.

The key to living a fuller and richer life, one free of those restricting negative emotions, is deceptively simple. It’s so simple that most people reject it out of hand as being too easy, too good to be true. That’s unfortunate because all you need to do to rid yourself of negative emotions is to begin acting how you want to feel.

 

Four Examples of Acting How You Want to Feel

While you might think that your actions follow your thoughts, just the opposite is true. This means that if you can act the way you want to feel, your feelings will follow suit.

Example 1 | Say that you’re shy. You find social situations awkward and uncomfortable. Because of this, you pass up opportunities to get together with other people. Many of these opportunities are events that you really want to attend. You like people and you want them to like you in return. It’s just that your shyness is like a barrier between you and the rest of the world.

All you need to do to eliminate this problem is begin acting confidently, even if you don’t feel confident inside. It’s initially difficult to do, but fairly quickly you find people responding positively to your confident attitude. You begin to enjoy socializing. Acting confident begins to make you feel less shy. Because you act with confidence, you begin to feel confident. All of this occurred because you began to act the way you really wanted to feel.

Example 2 | What does success look like? Very often success looks confident. This means that if you want to appear more successful, you need to act with more confidence. Walk like you own the world. Talk like your dreams are about to come true. When you start to act like you’re successful, you begin to adopt a more successful state of mind. You exude confidence and that confidence changes the way you think. Once you start acting successful, you’ll be surprised at the opportunities life presents to you – opportunities that you’re now mentally ready to take advantage of.

Example 3 | How do you begin to feel healthier? It’s easy. All you have to do is begin acting in a healthy manner. You see while our thoughts have the ability to influence our feeling the opposite is also true. Our actions can also influence our thoughts. So start taking healthy actions. Stop taking elevators. Use the stairs instead. Reject your urge to eat fast or processed food. Start eating fresh, low-fat foods. Soon, you’ll start seeing some amazing changes. You actually are going to start feeling healthier. Why? Because you are healthier. Take a look at my post on Food and Your Health.

Example 4 | If you’d like to feel more happiness in your life, start by simply finding those things that bring you joy, and do more of them! If bird-watching makes you happy – do some birdwatching and watch your feelings accompany your actions! The true key to happiness is allowing yourself the permission to be happy! So find what it is that makes your heart soar – and do it!

I choose happy, and being an introvert I choose unafraid. What will you choose for yourself?