In the last post we talked about consistency and why it matters. Why it is important to keep going with your good habits and slowly but consistently ditch those that are not benefiting your wellbeing. This leads us to another important subject, closely related to consistency of behaviours and happiness.
What is happiness?
There is a scientific stance to happiness, Katherine Jacobs Bao and Sonja Lyubomirsky in their book on happiness define happiness as the frequent experience of positive emotions, and they use terms such as positive affect, pleasant mood, and high well-being when referring to individuals who often experience positive emotions.
What does happiness really mean?
In reality, everyone has their own definition of happiness which can vary depending on the day.
On a good day happiness for me is a positive feeling experienced over and over again. It is like a warm light in the background of every moment that I experience, a walk in the park and a warm tea in my favourite coffee shop. I will add, this does not include me staring at my phone and clicking on endless links on social media. Most of the time happiness includes me just being; being in the moment. On a bad day, happiness is just surviving till the end of the day. It is not losing “it” when my son again doesn’t want to do his homework; it is staying calm when everything around me falls apart. What does happiness mean to you?
Happiness is about the journey, not the destination.
I believe that happiness is about a happy journey and a happy destination.
Did you know that we can choose to be happy at any moment? The fact that we can choose it though, doesn’t mean that it is easy as you and I can make it very hard for ourselves. Today you can say that you will be happy when the children are in bed and the house is clean and your work is done and your husband is not snoring while watching TV and… But is that the case? Would ticking off all the items on your to-do list make you truly happy?
How do you achieve happiness?
As I mentioned above, the key to happiness is learning how to be happy right now, not tomorrow. Below you will find list of tips which can support you on your way to achieving happiness.
- Practice Gratitude. We all have bad days, bad hair days, and bad work days. But there is always something that you can be grateful for, even if it is something basic for you e.g. a roof over your head, a meal or someone to hug. Start a journal where you will write three good things that happened that particular day. Coming back to this journal on a bad day can be all what you need to feel warmth of happiness.
- Stay in the Moment. Whatever you are doing make sure you stay fully engaged. We live in times when it is so easy to become antisocial while using SOCIAL media. Make sure that you stay focused, breathing exercises are an amazing way of focusing your mind.
- Accept Responsibility for Your Life. You are not a victim of terrible circumstances. We have a right to response to everything that happens to us in the way we choose to. We may not control everything but we definitely can control how we respond to life crises.
Dalai Lama XIV said that “a disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering.” Practice positive things daily.
If you would like to find out more about the art of happiness please join me at the Isbourne Holistic Centre (Cheltenham) on the 20th July to listen to my talk “How to… Make Your Body & Mind Happy”
Magdalena Lorynska is a Therapist and Owner of Wellness in Motion. She is passionate about helping people feel better physically and mentally. Visit her Facebook page for wellbeing updates.