One of the themes I come across consistently in seeking out fodder for my blog is that happiness is not something you get because of external forces — you will *not* become happy simply because you get a new job or lose 20 pounds — but instead is something you cultivate internally.
So I could lose myself in the wonderful blog Marc and Angel Hack Life: Practical Tips for a Productive Life. Their posts are full of actionable ways to become happier, including:
- 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself
- 20 Things to Start Doing in Your Relationships
- 12 Things Successful People Do Differently
I especially loved their post “30 Things to Start Doing for Yourself,” because it speaks to your ability to make yourself happier — both by taking conscious responsibility for the choices you make about your lifestyle and environment, and by highlighting the importance of your own mindset.
I wanted to pick a handful of their tips to highlight, but had a difficult time deleting any, so here are the first six:
- Start spending time with the right people. – These are the people you enjoy, who love and appreciate you, and who encourage you to improve in healthy and exciting ways. They are the ones who make you feel more alive, and not only embrace who you are now, but also embrace and embody who you want to be, unconditionally.
- Start facing your problems head on. – It isn’t your problems that define you, but how you react to them and recover from them. Problems will not disappear unless you take action. Do what you can, when you can, and acknowledge what you’ve done. It’s all about taking baby steps in the right direction, inch by inch. These inches count, they add up to yards and miles in the long run.
- Start being honest with yourself about everything. – Be honest about what’s right, as well as what needs to be changed. Be honest about what you want to achieve and who you want to become. Be honest with every aspect of your life, always. Because you are the one person you can forever count on. Search your soul, for the truth, so that you truly know who you are. Once you do, you’ll have a better understanding of where you are now and how you got here, and you’ll be better equipped to identify where you want to go and how to get there. Read The Road Less Traveled.
- Start making your own happiness a priority. – Your needs matter. If you don’t value yourself, look out for yourself, and stick up for yourself, you’re sabotaging yourself. Remember, it IS possible to take care of your own needs while simultaneously caring for those around you. And once your needs are met, you will likely be far more capable of helping those who need you most.
- Start being yourself, genuinely and proudly. – Trying to be anyone else is a waste of the person you are. Be yourself. Embrace that individual inside you that has ideas, strengths and beauty like no one else. Be the person you know yourself to be – the best version of you – on your terms. Above all, be true to YOU, and if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.
- Start noticing and living in the present. – Right now is a miracle. Right now is the only moment guaranteed to you. Right now is life. So stop thinking about how great things will be in the future. Stop dwelling on what did or didn’t happen in the past. Learn to be in the ‘here and now’ and experience life as it’s happening. Appreciate the world for the beauty that it holds, right now.
If those six speak to you, I urge you to read the rest here.
Related posts on Newvine Growing:
- Study shows link between happiness and longevity
- Martin Seligman, author of “Authentic Happiness,” now wants us to flourish
- Deepak Chopra shares the equation for happiness
- Money can buy happiness, says MP Dunleavy
- Dan Gilbert speaks about synthetic happiness at TED
- How should we gauge happiness?
- The relationship between work, home and happiness
- Is happiness catching? Two social scientists say yes.