I’m willing to be that you want to be happier in your life. You want to get the secret that you need to become happier so that you can put it to action in your life and stop feeling sad, lonely, or just off somehow. The good news is that secret to becoming happier is simple. So, why do so many people struggle with happiness? Because they are not willing to live by this little secret that makes life much more rewarding and fulfilling.
What’s The Secret To Becoming Happier?
A friend of mine explains this really well. She says that when she was young, she thought the secret to happiness was to do what she wanted to do. Instant gratification felt good, and all the songs and sayings of her generation pointed to the fact that you had to live big and loud because you might not get tomorrow. Yet, despite doing what she wanted all day and every day, she wasn’t happy. There was something lacking inside of her even though she was getting everything that she wanted in the moment. Her desire to be happy led her to search outside of instant gratification and find the real secret to happiness. And now, 15 years later, she knows exactly what that secret is. The willingness to take your time at it.
Opening yourself up to becoming happier one day at a time is the secret to becoming happier. Understanding this concept is really important if you want to be happier because happiness stems from a few essential pillars that take some time to build. These pillars will lead into all those other things that lend their way to more happiness, such as a good diet, exercise, adequate sleep, positive thinking, being mindful, and much more. But, they are important to build first.
The 4 Big Pillars Of Happiness That Take Time To Build
1. Real Relationships
Close relationships have been proven over and over again to be the number one pillar of happiness. In fact, according to psychiatrist Robert Waldinger in his TED talk about the longest study on happiness, having someone that you can depend on is essential for happiness and good health. He says that even if you argue in your relationship, the fact that you have someone you can depend on when times get tough is enough to boost your happiness.
A real relationship takes time. It takes time to develop a friendship, trust, respect, and love. You can have a thousand relationships in your life, but none of them will make you happy if you haven’t taken the time to develop a real relationship with those people. One true relationship is better than a million acquaintances for your happiness any day.
How Can You Develop Real Relationships?
Ask yourself if the people in your life right now are people you want to be in a real relationship with. Do you want to be there for them in their times of need? Would they be there for you? Do you value the relationship with you have with them? Do you have fun with them and feel good around them or do they drain your energy and make you feel bad? All these questions will help you discover the people in your life now that you want to strengthen your relationships with and who you may want to let go from your life, or at least lessen your time around.
If you find that your current relationships are not really anything you can depend on, then it’s time to put yourself out there and form new relationships. This means you got to get out daily, interact with people, and find the type of people you really want to be around in your life.
Building a strong relationship takes commitment and work, which is why becoming happier one day at a time is so important to remember. You need to be willing to put in the time. If you get fed up with the lack of strong relationships in your life or don’t want to put in the work required to help build that connection, then you are not going to end up with the type of relationships in your life that have been proven to make you happier.
It takes some time to know who you are, what you believe, and who you want to be. Actually, it takes experience. You have to experience the pain of pretending to be someone you are not. You have to experience the desire to be more in line with your true self. And, you have to experience the experiences that help you be more in line with your true self. All that experience takes time.
Most young people are pretending to be someone they are not. They want to fit in, look cool, and do things that they think they should do. But, often that is out of line with who they are. I’ve found that most people spend their 20’s working through this charade of being someone they are not, and then their 30’s trying to figure out who they really are.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t be happy before you are 40. But, I definitely think that the older you get, the more you learn about yourself and what you really want, and the happier you become. Study after study suggests that people over the age of 65 are the happiest of all. While that might have a bit to do with being free to do what they want, I think understanding more about themselves is definitely a huge contribution to that happiness.
How Can You Work On Your Self-Awareness?
Personal growth is all about becoming the person you are meant to be, which requires resilience, courage, and commitment. You can read all you want about personal growth, but you can’t grow without experiences that help you strengthen these three things.
Therefore, the first thing you need to do is work on those three things! And, it requires a daily practice of putting yourself out there, experiencing failure and setbacks, and putting yourself out there again. That’s the only way to build the character strengths that help you grow as a person into who you really want to become.
A few things you need to do to do include:
– Create some goals that really matter to you and get pumped to go after them.
– Learn your lessons from the challenges you face from putting yourself out there.
– Accept failure and difficulty as a part of growing and becoming happier.
– Don’t dwell on what you can’t change.
– Be optimistic but hold a sense of realism as well.
– Open up your perception to see problems and experiences from all sides of the situation.
– Keep yourself open to new ways of thinking and believing.
– Listen to your inner guidance system in all situations.
– Allow yourself to change course when it resonates with you as the right thing to do.
Once you start making those things a permanent part of your life, you will see that every day opens you up to more awareness about yourself and what makes you happy. Your mindset about life and the obstacles that come your way will shift from a negative tone to a more optimistic tone where you feel like you can handle whatever comes your way – and maybe even get excited about what life is going to throw you next. And that new mindset will help you add more positive things to your life, such as healthy habits that really help you increase your happiness on a larger scale.
3. Being Grateful
Happiness is about loving what you have, not waiting for something to come into your life. The people who are always waiting for the perfect person or the perfect thing to brighten their day can never be happy because they are always looking for something external for happiness. Happiness comes from within when you are enjoying your life and everything in it.
It can take some time to build a sense of gratitude around your life. You can tell yourself that you are grateful for what you have all you want, but if you don’t really believe it, then you are not going to really feel it. Practicing repetition through positive affirmations and working on speaking positively about your life can help you start to truly be grateful for what you have. But, it won’t happen overnight.
How Can You Build An Attitude Of Gratitude?
First, appreciate who you are and what you have. No, you may not have everything you want in life, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have something. You have an arm, a leg, an eye, a brain – and those things can help you get everything you want in life, with time. So be grateful you have them!
Second, always find the bright side in a situation. You will find this hard in the beginning, but as time goes on it will be second nature. For instance, if you are standing in a grocery line, you can focus on how long the line is, how heavy your cart is, how annoying the person in front of you is being, OR you can focus on the fact that you have access to a whole grocery store of food that comes from all over the world! You can celebrate the money you have to buy the food and appreciate the work you put in to get that money. It’s always possible to find something to be grateful for in any situation.
4. Acting From A Place Of Love
The last big pillar of happiness is acting from a place of love. When you do things out of love, you feel good about yourself and the people around you, which makes you happier. The problem is that most of us are selfish by nature and do things from a place of desire or expectation, which leads to unhappiness when those desires or expectations are not fulfilled.
It takes some time to work through the ego state that we have all been taught to live life in. We’ve been taught that we come first, and everything we do is a step towards getting the life we want. That and plain old ignorance towards other people and their needs and desires can keep us from acting from a place of love. We treat other people as a stepping stone. We get upset with other people who get in our way for what we want. And while we build up our material possessions, we feel unhappy because we are feeling a disconnect from the world around us.
Love is the answer to plug back into the world, feel like a part of something bigger, and feel truly happy in life. Doing things out of love for other people, whether it is family or strangers, can have a boomerang effect on your happiness.
How Can You Act More From A Place Of Love?
First, starting noticing other people and their needs. This means you have to look past your own thoughts, beliefs, and perceptions, and take the time to understand where other people are coming from. Once you start to open up your awareness to the world around you, it will become much clearer what you can do to act out from a place of love.
Second, start giving more. Your time, energy, and money are all currencies you have to act from a place of love. You don’t need to volunteer, although that is definitely a way to give from the heart and feel more happiness, but you should do something daily where you lend an ear, help someone out, donate, pay it forward, or something else that gives someone something the need.
Opening your awareness and giving are two things that will drive you further and further towards a place of always acting out of love and even thinking of others in a loving way. You will be amazed at what this does for your happiness! Just take it day by day.
Always Focus On Becoming Happier One Day At A Time
The big thing to remember is that you can’t just turn on happiness. It would be nice if you could snap your fingers and be instantly happy for the rest of your life, but that’s not the way that real happiness works.
The type of happiness that you want – the happiness that comes from a place of being satisfied and enthusiastic at the same time, needs to be worked on. By focusing on forming real relationships, working on your personal growth, practicing gratitude, and acting from a place of love, you will be adding little blocks to your happiness level every day and find yourself becoming happier easily.