Happiness matters, but that’s not all.
I'm on a mission to spread happiness! And one that doesn't have an end.
Please note: Real genuine happiness does not mean you are happy all the time.
Some of the happiest people I know, and even myself have days of struggle. Remember you are human and happiness shouldn’t be your only goal. In fact it shouldn’t be a ‘goal’ because you set yourself up for failure when you feel let down.
Since 2011 the UN recognised happiness as “fundamental human goal” and since 2012, every year on the 20th of March we celebrate International Happiness Day. Which is amazing, a whole day dedicated to one of the greatest feelings in the world.
But with all things, it’s not just about a day. Because nothing is fixed in a day. People get so caught up on pursuing happiness that they forgot that there is often a pathway of ups and downs before we can experience that ultimate high like happiness. Of course if we could purchase it from a book store, we would all be walking around with a cheesy old grin on our face.
Coming from someone who literally lives to help others and try and make other happy I have learnt along the way that the toll of that mean’t I was often left un happy myself. Whilst giving random acts of kindness is such a beautiful thing to do, don’t forget about yourself.
The most simply incredible version of the way I perceive happiness is in the children's movie ‘Inside Out’. If you haven’t yet seen it. Cancel tonights plans, order pizza and watch it. I guarantee it’s worth it. It might even make you happy. Warning: you may have to shed a few tears to get there, I did.
In a world bombarded by choice, images, media and expectations it can be incredibly difficult to feel content. There’s always something else, someone else, somewhere else that makes you feel like that what you have isn’t satisfying.
I have often been described as the “energetic, happy human that surely cannot be sad”. But it actually upsets me when people dismiss friends (or my) emotions unless they are associated with happiness.
Here is top 6 (i like even numbers) things that make me happy:
Acknowledge That Mental Illness Can Be Normal and Okay
Guess what? We all know someone that has it. Whether they hide it or not. It’s normal, you are not defined by it and you 'r Brown' stated "the more we talk about shame the easier it becomes dealing with it". So do it, talk about it. Ride out those darker days because sometimes you got to go there before you can come up.
Find Genuine, Real Connections
Does anyone else find it really hard to connect with some people? One of the greatest ways I’ve found that happiness comes is through experiencing those other, more challenging emotions that come before it that genuinely make us feel like happiness doesn’t exist.
Human connection, some of the happiest moments and memories have been drawn from experiences with other people. Happiness can come in small silly moments or big memorable moments. There is no rules.
Experience all the other emotions. Don’t fight them. Let them come, let them go. We so get caught up with trying to attain happiness, but even the best of them all experience sadness, fear, guilt. No one is able to be happy 100% of the time and if you are I want what you are on.
Eat Well to Live Well I am a big believer that food impacts your mood. I am not saying don’t treat yourself because trust me I am good at that. But get in touch with your body, know what makes your soul shine and what makes you feel slow and flat. Think about the last time you ate a really big wholesome salad and felt bad? Can’t remember? That’s because whole foods are designed to enhance moods and nourish your body. Move your body, even on days you don’t want to and if you are up for a challenge try going plant based for a week. See what happens. It changed my life forever.
Accept that life will, always, throw challenges at you:
I am not sure if it is just me, but I spent so long caught up in wondering why difficult things happened to me, why my childhood was tough, why things weren’t always normal. After conversations with councillors, friends and family I began to realise that a guide to the ultimate life is accepting that there will be amazing days and there will be shit ones too. Just ride them out!
Once you let go of expecting the world to always be good and for things be easy, you let go of this feeling that you can control it all.
Share the dam thing! If you experience happiness a lot, share it. With your friends, family, strangers or colleagues. In fact some people even find happiness from helping others. So do what you can. When you can.
Living a happier life is about accepting the human experience for all it is. Never stop growing thriving for individual growth. Even your heroes and their heroes gone practice this.
Today, be your own hero.