As we begin to contemplate the state of our lives in preparation for the New Year, it’s helpful to clarify what actually makes us happy. So, what is it? What makes you truly happy?
No, we’re talking bigger than puppy kisses, dark chocolate and riding bikes. We are talking about what it takes to make large swaths of your life feel stable and balanced. We are talking about what makes you happy, overall.
There are various relationships in life that must be in balance in order for a person to achieve lasting happiness. The 5 main pillars are: community, your physical body, passion, relationship to Self and your environment. Here are some happiness-promoting tips for starting to encourage balance in these areas and more:
CULTIVATE HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS
Do your friends actively improve your life on the whole? Or do you find some of your friendships exhausting. Sometimes, friendships can become energy sucks. And that unfortunately means it is time to move on. Life is too short to waste on people who don’t make you happy. Be polite and steadily cut off ties with those relationships that no longer serve you. And while you can’t choose your family, you can put the effort in to make sure those relationships are as healthy as they can be, too.
FILL YOUR LIFE WITH PASSION
No no, don’t start looking for your passion. Think of the pressure! Instead, fill your life with stimulation, art, culture, fun and creativity. Seek out any activity that plants a seed of interest within you and watch it blossom. A life without passion or purpose feels empty at best. Stop waiting for your purpose to find you by exercising your creative juices and proactively exploring. There is something out there for everyone.
USE YOUR BODY
There is a reason we have bodies. They allow us to frolic and galavant; to write and type; to celebrate and make love; to create and destroy. Rather than being a floating energy force devoid of physical form, you have this incredible body! Enjoy it to its fullest and keep it fit. Remember, your body needs and deserves love. The more you love your body, the easier it will be for you to realize how beautiful it is. And it is beautiful.
SEEK NATURAL HEALTH AND BALANCE
On the same line, in order to be happy, you have to be reasonably healthy. Eat nourishing foods, treat your body and mind with respect, hydrate, get plenty of sleep. Oh, and don’t stress too much—yes, even about health. Take a load off for a slice of cake once in a while. If you use moderation, you can celebrate the wildest parts of life, like walking and talking with an old friend until the sun rises, eating half a pie on your birthday, or celebrating with a friends and a fresh brew after riding the mountains of Colorado. Be healthy, yes, but don’t begrudge yourself the treats of living.
EXPERIENCE THE PLANET
Have you ever stood on an empty beach, staring into the sunset, and thought, “All of this, this whole incredible world, is merely a speckle in the vastness of the universe! Wow!” No? Just me? Well, anyways… we live on this miraculous planet that not only supports life, but encourages it to thrive! Make time to explore every facet of the Earth you possibly can, from the majestic Grand Canyon to the bustling streets of India to historic Canadian sugar shacks to the coffee plantations of Guatemala. Even if you must remain local, there is always something new and incredible to discover in the wondrous world around us. Expose yourself to new environments and cultures as often as you can.
TAKE A MOMENT FOR GRATITUDE
We are so accustomed to taking stock of all the unfortunate and negative aspects of our lives, we tend to glaze over the sweet bits. Take a break from the constant over-analysis and negativity to acknowledge the good parts of your life. If you’re reading this, you probably have a warm place to sleep, nourishing food on the table and access to some sort of computer. You may have a truly supportive family, or perhaps you enjoy your job, or perhaps you don’t enjoy your job but at least it helps to pay the bills for now…Take some time to journal about all the wonderful things you have and what a good life you’ve created for yourself. And don’t forget, you are pretty incredible!
Happiness can seem elusive at best, so indulge in the path towards happiness rather than the destination itself. Americans are more obsessed with happiness than anyone, but that obsession is making us anxious and, ironically, unhappy. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to be happy; that defeats the point. Just practice moving your life in a more positive, healthy and balanced direction, and you’ll be on the journey to longterm life satisfaction.
COURTESY BY: http://www.care2.com