Happiness is something that we often define as fleeting and this is because we put happiness into objects, ourselves, and often on the backs of other people. What I mean by this is that instead of enjoying the moment and living in a state of happiness, we as humans decided to rely on external triggers to make us happy.
When we rely on something to make us happy, that’s not happiness. That’s chasing a dopamine high. Happiness is an external factor with hormonal responses that get us always wanting that next best thing.
You want to know the truth of the matter?
Happiness is your responsibility and no one else’s.
To help you on your happiness journey, here are seven habits and types of awareness that can help you hone and and feel happier starting today.
Meditation and Mindfulness
I know, I know. Who wants to sit down and think about nothing for a period of time and call that happiness?
Well, since you’re reading this, you do. You want to find a way to gain inner happiness that isn’t all about chasing that next dopamine high or finding something that will make you happy. It’s time to dig deeper.
Meditation can be difficult to start but let’s add to this and say that being mindful during meditation is even harder. When you meditate, you aren’t focusing on nothing. Until you are a master of meditation, there has to be some focus or mantra to help keep your mind clear.
This can be done through mindfulness and an attitude of gratitude. When you are working on meditation, take deep breaths through your nose and be mindful of what is around you.
For example, what kind of clothes are you wearing? Are they comfortable? Are they new or old? How did you get them? Let your mind focus on an object for a moment then slowly but surely, expand that consciousness to the space around you.
What do you hear? What can you taste? Can you feel a breeze from your fan or a prickle of grass if you’re sitting outside?
Existing in an attitude of gratitude, like being thankful for the grass that was poking your leg or the breeze that went across your face, is something that takes practice just like meditation and mindfulness.
This is why writing out a gratitude journal, or even just jotting things down on a piece of paper, can really help you find out what you are truly grateful for and what your mind spends time on.
Did you know that gratitude is a part of happiness? Now you do! As you practice daily gratitude journaling, you will begin to find happiness swelling from within.
Instead of expecting people to reach out to you to make you happy, instead focus on how to help yourself and build positive relationships that are fulfilling. When you build those relationships and work on them regularly, you will find that your happiness increases.
Why is that? Humans are social beings and because of that we need human interaction far more often than we would like to admit sometimes. No matter if you are an introvert, extrovert, or ambivert, you will need to interact and create fulfilling relationships in order to be truly happy.
Add in Self-Care
Short, sweet and to the point, taking care of yourself will help your mind stay clear and show yourself appreciation. You can do this by taking the time to wash your face, make your bed, enjoy a cup of tea or your favorite drink, and more.
Taking care of your body by taking supplements is another great way to manage self care that also bolsters your immune system and helps you feel better all around.
When you are taken care of when it comes to your body, it goes to show yourself that you are taking control of happiness rather than letting happiness control you.
One of the best ways to remember what happiness is is to use the PERMA Model. This is Positive emotions, Engagement in activities, Relationships with others, Meaning through serving a purpose and finally Accomplishment through mastery or hard work.
PERMA relates to what happiness is and how to achieve happiness. Much like meditation, reaching out to others and taking care of yourself, each of these elements relates to a core idea of PERMA. Happiness takes work and takes time which means that to accomplish happiness you have to put in the time and effort.
While it can be difficult when you first start out, adding in activities that relate to the PERMA Model throughout your day are going to help you add in those elements of positivity that increase your daily happiness.