Your Secret To Happiness At Every Age
“Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” Abraham Lincoln
How to find happiness in life?
It’s a question that has been around a long time. But personally, I don’t think we have to look too far to find the answer.
I’ve have nothing against looking ‘beyond’ to exotic possibilities such as a new relationship, a new Mercedes, an exciting vacation somewhere far away. But what I personally experience is that true happiness is something that happens in little moments – and in little tasks.
Finding happiness could be the name to many a man’s journey, a woman’s search for her soul, the hope of the still young child who understands no reason for suffering. I simply want to share some of the ways I have found happiness and what it means to me. Not everyone will find happiness in the same way, but I do believe the secret is no secret at all. Happiness comes from within.
How do you know when you’re really happy?
True happiness is so different from any other feeling that’s mistakable when experienced. Happiness is so subjective; it seems to be different for every person. Or is it?
What is happiness?
After all, happiness is only a word that has been given to a state of being. How we define it may be different from one person to another.
Merriam–Webster defines happiness as: ‘a. a state of well-being or contentment: joy; b. A pleasurable or satisfying experience.”
I remember hearing someone say that happiness is what takes place on the outside and joy happens on the inside, but after living life for a while, I believe that happiness and joy come from the same place, within. They both bubble over like a fountain into our lives.
Things don’t make us happy!
It’s how we use them in our lives that give cause for that feeling of contentment or happiness. What value does a new stove give towards my happiness if I never use it or if I don’t know how to cook? Or the new car? It might feel really great to climb in and feel the soft leather and drive to the beach, but what does it really matter if the person driving the car just lost her job and can’t make the car payments? (just an example, hope not to happen to anyone).
Things come and go, people come and go. Happiness can be attained without cost. It’s accessible and there is no need to go anywhere to find it. It is learning self-awareness, realising we already have it within our beings.
Where do we find happiness? What is the secret?
Where do we find it? I started as a child to discover where happiness lives, how to access it. I lived a very innocent childhood, free from worries of the world. I like to draw and I read a lot of books and like to read make believe, poetry. I loved the feeling that reading gave me and it allowed me to stay connected to my own creativity. We had a big garden in our back and front yard. Sometimes I would read aloud. I then started writing at a young age. I find reading, writing and painting give me a place of great contentment and imagination. I find great happiness in doing all that.
If you want to be truly happy, make use of the tips below and take it for what it’s worth:
What do you want? A great job? A fulfilling relationship? Go sailing or just to have time to rejuvenate, or merely to get along better with yourself?
One good way to find a few useful, life-improving and time-tested tips is to look back. To look way back through your life’s journey and others, you can find ideas that can help you find happiness. Maybe you’ll find them helpful.
Love is all around us to make us happy
As a young girl, I discovered a great love for nature and being outdoors. I spent a lot of my youth outside in the garden, forest walking and hiking through woods, and playing in the park. I was not athletic but I wanted to be outside to feel the air on my face and see the trees, the flowers and hear the birds. To me there is a vibrant energy in nature that is beautiful. Have you every gazed at a tiny flower and marvelled at its design?
It is like a whole different world that many become oblivious to, but nature shares herself freely with us each and every day and I delight in the happiness it brings me. There is even a deeper realm where nature itself communicates to us when we are very still and listen. The soft breeze whispers and the hurried winds may cry. A sunset calms and allows a peace to blanket us with nature’s splendid beauty.
Music can make you happy
Besides, how many times have we heard music that filled us to our very core with emotion? The ability to change our mental state simply by listening to your favourite piece of music can give you great happiness, where you simply just want to sit and listen, and do nothing else.
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking – Marcus Aurelius Antoninus
How you view yourself and your world are conscious choices and habits. The lens you choose to view everything through determines how you will interpret what is happening. And from your interpretation, you act. And all of this becomes your life. You can choose to find happiness in small, everyday things. You can choose to interpret what happens in a positive way. Or in a negative way.
And your choices controls much of how much happiness you will find and create in your life.
When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us – Helen Keller
Focus on the present, not yesterday or tomorrow
You only have now. And now. And now. Yesterday is a memory and you cannot change it. Tomorrow is just a fantasy in your mind right now. So live more in the now, focus on the present moment and today. Think and worry less about yesterday and tomorrow. Otherwise you might miss a great deal of happiness that is available to you right now.
Don’t forget to be grateful
Man is fond of counting his troubles, but he does not count his joys. If he counted them up as he ought to, he would see that every lot has enough happiness provided for it. Besides, we tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather recognising and appreciating what we do have. So don’t forget about gratitude or you may forget about the happiness that is already in your life.
Happiness is like a kiss. You must share it to enjoy it – Bernard Meltzer
Help someone else find happiness
When you make someone else happy – for example, by helping them with something – you can sense, see, feel and hear it. And that happy feeling flows back to you.
Do what you like to do
Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you’ll be successful. You may not be able to choose to do what you want to do right now. But you almost always have a choice to do more of what you really want to do. There is always time. You have a choice.
Or at least do something
One of the best ways to not find happiness is just to hold back and do nothing. Seldom show up. Paralyse yourself through over-analysis. It’s not always easy to take action, it can be scary and hard and difficult. But if you don’t take action you’ll be missing out on a lot. Including many moments, people and experiences that can bring you a lot of happiness.
So how do we stay happy and fulfilled in life? We stay open to the love that is being expressed all around us through such an amazing variety of forms and people and creatures. While at the same time contributing our own love to the healing and well-being of the planet.
A few last thoughts:
Let go of preoccupation
Slow down and smell the roses, as they say. When you let a little stillness into your life something shifts. You stop being so preoccupied with your thoughts and concern and you have room in your heart to see the magic of existence in you and around you.
Be interested in other people
It costs nothing to be interested in other people and in what is going on in their lives. People feel it when you are expressing a genuinely friendly attitude and they feel it when you appreciate them. Happiness inevitably increases.
Above all, be yourself. Be who you truly are. The wisdom of the ages is in you, and it will guide you surely to the fulfilment and the destiny that is right for you as you listen to its gentle nudge in your heart. Any moment will do to be happy. The simplest, most unglamorous task will suffice. I send you love and blessings and would be delighted to hear from you if you have thoughts on this subject.
Making happiness a habit with mindfulness
The road to happiness can start at any age, according to Susan Kaiser Greenland, author of The Mindful Child. Using mindfulness techniques to focus on positive habits while breaking the old, she believes that children have the capacity to find happiness and balance that can remain with them through adulthood.
What exactly is mindfulness?
“Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way; on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” – Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, Expert and Creator on mindfulness based stress reduction
What makes us happy?
Research from University of Illinois, USA has shown:
How does increase in incomes affects happiness?
That once your basic needs are met, additional income does little to raise your sense of satisfaction with life.
What about education and happiness?
Sorry mum and dad, neither education nor high IQ paves the road to happiness.
Being young and happiness?
In fact, older people are more consistently satisfied with their lives than the young.
What about marriage and happiness?
A complicated picture though! Married people are generally happier than singles, but that may be because they were already happier people to begin with.
Weather and happiness?
Through survey among people living in sunny climate and wet climate, this is not true and irrelevant to happiness.
Certainly the greatest happiness lies within and can only be expressed through life itself, living each day, endeavouring to be aware each moment. The happiness that comes from your children’s eyes, or the hugs we share after spending the evening having dinner with friends and watching a movie together.
Discovering of one’s own happiness is simply about having that great feelings from within, the contentment of walking your dog and laughing with friends, peers and family members, sharing joy at a friend’s wedding day, happy feeling when staying connected with friends and love ones. Ultimately, knowledge of who you are is imperative.
Happiness, as you close each day, feeling the peace in your house, office, filled with gratitude and happy to be alive. Happiness feels good.
It has also been said with age comes wisdom. I think in most aspects of life this saying can be found truthful. But the key is to never settle for less than what you want or deserve and that is what happiness is all about ultimately.