Happiness is a state we all try to achieve. We imagine it; we think of what it would be. Like so many other things, we envision happiness as an object to be gotten. Sure, we understand that it’s abstract, but we tend to think of being happy as something that arrives solely due to achievements. Someone who’s happy, “just because,” tends to get looked at a little funny, as if they’re not quite completely mentally present. It’s possible, though. Happiness can be more of an internal state we create than something external. Consider the following:
- To be happy, you need some self-insight. People often have big blind spots about themselves. Consider dating, as a small example. People will date the wrong type of person over and over, yet wonder why they’re never happy in a relationship. They often ask, “What’s wrong with me?” Even though they often get the response that they’re consistently making the same bad choices over and over, these people persist. Insight can hurt. Insight isn’t always finding out about how great you truly are. Often, we must face up to some things about ourselves that could stand some improvement. However, insight is the best way to eliminate happiness obliterating repetitive behaviors.
- Approach life, people and events with an open mind. Much of the time, we aren’t happy because we have mindsets that are rigid and unyielding. We think that things must be a certain way, that things should be as we wish them to be. Often, we miss great opportunities because what reality presents us doesn’t look like what we imagined. We reject good things because we have a pretty narrow definition of “good.”
- Kindness and gratitude go a long way toward becoming happy. Kindness tends to go both ways. If you’re kind to others, they’ll usually be kinder to you. It’s not a cure for all life’s ills, but constantly having bad interactions with people is a sign something’s wrong. Being grateful—in general—helps us feel better. It’s an acknowledgment that good things happen, and that life can be good.
- Aim for positivity. Happiness isn’t going to be found when your attitude is sour. If you can name or write down three specific things that went right in each day, great. If it’s only one thing, think of it. Some days can be lousy overall, but if you’re still worrying about it, there’s your problem. You have time and mental energy enough to worry. You might try spending that time doing something fun. Having fun is an important part of being happy, by the way!
- Make some good friends. Value quality over quantity. Good relationships absorb a lot of mental and emotional distress and in return provide positivity and once again, opportunities for achieving happiness.
Happiness is within reach for all of us; we just have to change the way we look at the world, aim for positivity, and always have an open mind. Happiness is not as far as you may think, and finding the joy in all aspects of life will help you find true happiness.