9 Ways to Cultivate Happiness
Let’s be honest: The world is full of miserable and unhappy people. And you know what? They want company.
Your social network feeds are full of people bitching and complaining about the injustices of society – like Starbucks being out of pumpkin muffins, their company’s policy against being on Facebook during work, or the audacity of the airline making them wait ten minutes for baggage.
Every time you talk to your best friend, she complains about her husband. Every time you walk into a meeting, people grumble about their work load. And let’s not even mention the news!
Some days, it can feel like you’re surrounded!
In a society where we are expected to want the next big thing – the newest gadget – to strive for more, it can be a challenge to find contentment and satisfaction. But you have a choice.
You could take up the mantra “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” and proceed to grumble, complain and bitch.
Or you could choose not to. You could choose to find something to be happy about, instead.
Besides, darling, being happy is sexy.
I know that the washed and perfumed masses may try to squash your joy. I understand that your friends and family members may remind you of past failures. It isn’t that they want to cause you pain, it simply means that they are struggling with pain of their own. Or they’re afraid that if you don’t complain together, then you will lose your bond of friendship.
Don’t let their fears prevent you from stepping into your happiest, sexiest self.
Don’t let your own past fears stop you, either.
The voices of the past may tell you that you don’t deserve to be happy. They may insist that you must be thin, rich, and beautiful to maintain happiness. They’re wrong.
Don’t get lost within the idea that you are too damaged or broken to deserve happiness. No one is broken and the “damage” isn’t damage at all: it’s part of what makes you, well, you.
You are perfect as you are now in this moment, and if you are miserable on the inside, no amount of money, no number on the scale and no amount of plastic surgery will make it go away.
How do you deal with those voices and people?
Here are nine tips help you to cultivate more happiness in your world:
One - Take Responsibility.
It is no one else’s job, it is yours. If you look to the outside world for it, you’ll always be reaching for happiness instead of being happy.
Darling, the fact of the matter is: you are responsible for your happy.
Two - Be Grateful.
Every night before you go to bed, write down at least three things you are thankful for. Going to sleep with gratitude on your mind will bring you a more positive approach when you wake to a new day.
Three - Close Your Eyes.
Turn a blind eye to all things media. Un-follow the Negative Nellie’s from Twitter, un-friend (or hide) the Facebook friends that only complain, and turn off the evening news.
Four - Distance Yourself.
Don’t chime in when a co-worker complains. Don’t participate in gossip. Smile and walk away from negative social interactions.
Five – Work It, Baby.
If you are unhappy at your job, you have two choices: stop complaining and find the good in it or leave it. If changing jobs isn’t an option, then it’s time to find some delight in what you do each day.
Personally, I’m a big fan of finding what is good in a current situation before you make a drastic change and “jump ship”.
Six – Make Love.
The right love relationship can make happiness a state of exhilaration. If you believe that you would be happy IF your partner changed, then you will be unable to discover any satisfaction. If you are not happy with who you are, then having a loving partner won’t fix it. If the state of your partnership is disintegrating, then you have a responsibility to yourself and the relationship to either change your attitude or your geography.
Seven – Make Peace, Not War.
I understand that you may desire things in your life to change. You may want to lose some weight or write that book. But begin by accepting where you are now, you will end the argument with reality and put your feet on firmer ground to begin creating change by choice.
Eight – No Drama, Mama.
Allow those that you love – siblings, friends- to unburden themselves to you without attaching to their stuff. Remind them that you love them. Remind them that you want them to be happy. Turn the conversation to a happy memory, a funny anecdote, or an exciting upcoming event.
Suggest to them a good therapist or coach – not as a judgment, but out of love. By the way, don’t get stuck in a phase of coaching them or giving them advice unsolicited. Trust me on this
Nine - Smile.
A lot. Smile at grocery clerks and people that you pass. And sometimes, it’s the only kind gesture another gets in a day. What do you have to lose except a little grumpiness? Smiles are catchy.
When you accept that it is not only OK to be happy, but that you deserve to be happy, you will transform. No matter how many Negative Nellies there are in the world that tell you that life is full of misery and woe, you can face the world with the knowledge that it’s okay to be happy.
You’ll find that the more abundance of joy you embrace, the more you will be able to shine your light of happiness to the world.
When you do shine that sexy brilliant light of happiness, you’ll find that that energy will be returned to you in every day interactions. When you look in the mirror, you’ll discover that the radiant person in the glass is that sexy, confident, and happy you.
So, what about you? What can you to today to embrace the mantra that you deserve to be happy? How can you remind yourself that you ARE happy?