Have you ever explored what makes you happy?
Happiness, like success is not something you pursue, anything you pursue, eludes you. Invest some time today answering the question I posed above, it is possibly one of the most important questions you will ever answer in your life. When you understand what actually makes you happy and feel joy and contentment, you equip yourself with information to bring bucket loads of happiness into your life. In reality, most people do not have a clear picture of what make stem happy at all. Harvard professor Dan Gilbert, stated in his book “Stumbling on happiness” that most people believe that they know what makes them happy, but in most cases we are wrong.
Happiness is not something you postpone for later, it is something you must accept and acknowledge as being available right now, when you know what you are looking for. The challenge most people bring into the way of their happiness, is the tendency for us to fall into the trap of postponing our happiness until some future event occurs in our lives. The typical scenario of “I will be happy when I get the promotion or when my children graduate from school, etc. This tendency to put happiness in the future means that we never ever get to enjoy happiness in the now. We are constantly striving to have, do or be something in the future; never allowing ourselves to live in the moment and to enjoy what is available to us right now, namely true and meaningful happiness. When you are constantly striving for what will or may be, you are living a “then” life of unhappiness and you feel empty and unhappy. If you are unable to create feelings of happiness in your life right now, it is certain that you will never be equipped to create any happiness in your life later.
The second area that is cause for our unhappiness is our tendency to focus our energy on making other people happy or rather acting in a certain way because we believe it is what other people expect of us.
- Have you ever discovered what success and true happiness means to you?
- Do you know what need to happen before you believe you are successful?
- What will your life look like when you are happy and successful?
- What will you be doing, experiencing and what will you be?
Society puts huge pressure on us to perform in certain ways, our parents pressure us to adopt their standards regarding happiness, we look around our environment and we see people enjoying their unique version of what happiness means to them and we mistakenly believe the same thing will bring us happiness. These unrealistic expectations about what success and happiness really mean to us, causes us to live a false life that feels empty and devoid of happiness. When we are living in this modality, where we are often living a false life that is not optimal or even of our choosing, we can never find happiness. We are merely living an illusion, a life we unconsciously stumbled into because we believed our parents, peers or society’s concept of success and happiness was what we really wanted. No one can ever find true and lasting happiness until they define what success and happiness really means to them and then they go about the business of bringing just that into their lives.
The third way we hold ourselves away from experiencing true happiness is that we attempt to contrast our happiness with the people around us. We attempt to live the illusion of what we believe happiness should be, rather than what it really is. When you are constantly comparing yourself and your level of happiness to everyone around you, you are creating unrealistic reference points that have nothing to do with you and your own unique circumstances. You are unique and special and your experience of happiness is your own experience. Just allow yourself to be happy in your own way and stop comparing yourself to everyone around you.
The easiest way I have found to bring real and meaningful happiness into your life is to accept that happiness is unique to you and the way you enjoy happiness is your own experience. When you listen to one of the best motivational speakers you will learn that as you make this small shift and you begin to live in a state of constant gratitude, where you focus on all the incredible things you already have in your life, you set yourself up for happiness. Once you have begun to see that there are many reasons for you to be happy about so many things in your life right now, you will begin to nurture happiness further and you will begin to see all the other experiences that will bring you happiness and joy.
Happy, optimistic people are better performers and they experience far better results in their lives. So when you discover what really makes you happy, you so not only get to experience a better life, you also get to enjoy greater success. I am certain that happiness will bring success far more often than success will bring happiness.