One thing you hear constantly when life gets rough is “Don’t worry, be happy.” Happiness isn’t as easy as you’d think it would be – it’s surely easier said than done. There is a lot of darkness in this world, and it can be hard to keep your head up, much less be happy, in spite of hardships. However, happiness can be achieved in the midst of difficulty.
Why is it Hard to Be Happy?
For some of us, being happy isn’t just telling yourself that you’re fine or everything will be ok. When we’ve experienced a lot of unhappiness in the past, it can be hard to recover.
Think about your life. Have you suffered many losses? Are you feeling unfulfilled, or like something’s missing? Do you feel like things are just humming along, day in and day out? These could be some of the reasons why you’re not happy. Maybe you’ve been pushed down so many times and every time you get up again, you’re worn down just a little more than the time before last. Here are a few less-common reasons why you may feel unhappy.
One reason you may be unhappy is because you have goals you haven’t finished. Think about some of the different things you’ve wanted to accomplish. These could be anything from a new personal record at the gym to making your first car or home purchase. Do you feel happier when they’ve been completed?
If you have goals you keep “putting off” for seemingly no reason, examine reasons as to why you’ve been delaying getting these things done. If you feel the end result won’t make you unhappy, perhaps you should re-examine your goals and see if you can modify them or let them go completely. Unhappiness can come from people leaving things unfinished, or working towards something that no longer serves them.
Putting Others’ Needs Before Yourself
This isn’t to say that you should become completely selfish. Examine your relationships and interactions and see if you’re putting others’ needs before your own.
Finding your own happy place and finding what makes you happy is very important. If you’re only doing things for your partner, child, family, friends, etc. but never for yourself, you’re going to feel worn down.
You shouldn’t stop focusing on others’ needs, but you should examine (and if necessary, adjust) how much time you put into yours as well.
Myths About Happiness
There are many myths about happiness that can be hard to deal with. It can be hard to figure out what you truly want out of life.
Consider these common ‘happiness myths’ and how much you buy into them.
Myth: Happiness is the Final Destination
The most prevalent myth is that happiness is the end-all, be-all. Truth be told, many people feel sad when they get to the end of something. That’s because happiness is the journey, and not the destination.
Myth: Happiness is Only Attained Through Certain Things
The idea of marriage, children, a picket fence and a dog is often the “perfect happiness” people talk about. But, happiness is something that makes you feel good. Whether it be donating to charity, helping out at an animal shelter, or even going on walks in the middle of the workday, you need to do what makes you feel good. Happiness can be found in both small and large things.
Myth: Happiness Ultimately Looks the Same for Everyone
You will realize your happiness differs from your partner’s, your coworkers’, and your family members. Your kid may find happiness in a cartoon they’re watching or their favorite lunch at school. Your coworker may find happiness in fishing, which you’re not too fond of. Happiness is personal, so don’t be afraid to do the things that make you happy that aren’t similar to the things that make people around you happy.
How do I Become Happier?
First, look at your goals, and determine whether or not you’re accomplishing what you want in life. If not, adjust accordingly, make a plan, and start working towards them! Here are a few more steps to becoming happier.
Don’t Listen to Other People’s Definition of Happiness
You don’t have to listen to what others think happiness is. It’s dangerous to fall into a comparison trap. Instead, focus on your own life, what interests you, and build from there.
If you notice that you’re happier solo and traveling the world, then do that. If you’re happier doing things with your partner, then do that. Happiness is a personal thing, and if you do things that others say make them happy, but you’re not interested in them, you won’t truly be happy.
Seeking Help for Happiness
One thing people forget is that it’s okay to get help in order to be happy. Many don’t think it can help, but a therapist can help you figure out what’s making you unhappy, and can help you with learning new behaviors and establishing new solutions to help you build a happier life.
Being happy is possible even with the way our world is. The doom and gloom of life and the troubles you may feel when you see others suffering can be hard to bear. But the right mindset and understanding that happiness is a personal thing will ultimately make you much happier.
This is a featured post by site sponsor Better Help.
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