I truly believe that anyone can be happy, because it’s like a muscle you can train. In the beginning you might be depressed and your happiness muscle is really weak and has no training. So if you tried to go out and climb the Mount Everest of happiness, it would be really hard and you’d probably want to give up. Here are 10 things happy people do differently.
If you started with just a few small baby steps, like gentle stretches for your happiness muscle or doing some warmups first to train yourself and get stronger, you’d find that over time your happiness muscle gets stronger and stronger. After a while, you find that you’re happy by default and you just have to maintain the happiness you’ve already created. You won’t even have to think about what to do anymore because it will come naturally.
10 Things Happy People Do Differently
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1. They know that you create your reality.
This is so important. Whatever you THINK will become your reality. Think about that. YOU create your reality. Not someone else, but you. When it comes down to it, once you’re out on your own, there are very few things in life that are truly “required.” Most things in life are actually optional. That means that if the idea of fitting yourself into a box to fit the “ideal” life that someone else has planned for you makes you feel sick, realize that you are the one creating your reality here. Not them. You. 😃 There may be consequences, yes, but you always have a choice in what you do with every aspect of your life. Jobs, relationships, career path, hobbies, leisure, how you spend your day, how you think, who you hang out with. You always have a choice.
2. They know that you choose your attitude in life.
This is related to the one above. Let’s say that for whatever reason, you’re in a situation that you don’t like. You have two choices here: you can either change your situation, or you can change your attitude about it. Although you do create your reality, sometimes things happen to you in life that are beyond your control. In those situations, it’s important to maintain the right attitude and choose to be the hero of your own story instead of the victim. It’s easy to slip into a negative attitude about something you don’t like, but you can always find a positive or productive way of looking at something. Which brings us to…
3. They choose to think positively or productively.
I say “actively” because it’s an active choice to think this way. It’s a choice you have to make in every situation when it would be easier and more tempting to choose to be angry or upset. But if you want to be happy, you have to choose to think either positively or productivity. By productively I mean that if you can’t find the good in a situation, find a way that it will make you grow or learn something about yourself. In other words, even a bad situation could still be “productive” because you can find a way to grow or learn from anything.
4. They love themselves.
Loving yourself is a choice too. 😃 Remember this: not everything you think is true. Especially in the beginning of this journey, you’re going to have to take your normal thoughts with a grain of salt. Just let them float by without attaching any significance to them. This is a technique from DBT therapy. Then, to start learning to love yourself, actively come up with positive thoughts about yourself. You literally have to retrain yourself how to think. Over time, you can reprogram your mind with the loving thoughts you want and ignore the negative thoughts that try to creep in. Also try making an “I’m Awesome” list of 100 things that make you awesome, and review this when you’re feeling down on yourself. Remember: you’ve survived every day of your life up to this point (even days that you thought you’d never get through). That alone is a very impressive accomplishment. 😃 And for that, you deserve the highest of fives.
5. They forgive and move forward.
“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” If you want to feel a lot lighter right now, start by forgiving all the people and memories from your past. Check out our post about How to Heal Past Hurts and Insecurities with Forgiveness. This one makes a big difference.
6. They take time for self care.
All work and no play makes someone stressed out and anxious. 😃 Especially if you’re doing the emotionally difficult work on this list, remember to take time for yourself to just read a book, listen to uplifting music, snuggle with a pet, or do something you’ve always wanted to. Remember to recharge your batteries. Check out 8 Self Care Gift Ideas.
7. They practice gratitude.
At attitude of gratitude for all the things you have in your life – whether it seems like a lot or not – can make a huge difference in feeling happy. For more on gratitude, check out our post called How to Improve Your Life Overnight.
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8. They don’t blame.
Being happy means taking responsibility for your life and not blaming other people. When you blame other people, you put yourself in the position of being a victim, and it’s really hard to be a happy victim. So let go of the past (with forgiveness), wipe the slate clean, and take responsibility for your present life so you can be fully in charge of making the changes you need to have a better life. Otherwise, you’re giving those people way more power than they deserve.
9. They detox from the negative.
It’s hard to be happy and positive if your life is full of negativity. As they say, you can’t live a positive life with a negative mind (or with other negative things in your life). That means detoxing your life from bad habits, abusive relationships, harmful ideas or beliefs, and more. If you’d like to learn more about detoxing your life of negative things, I’d recommend checking out our 30 Day Negativity Detox. It’s a good place to start if you’re starting with a lot of negativity in your life.
10. They have a strong “why” in life.
Without this one, everything else on the list becomes so much more difficult. But if you can figure out a compelling reason “why” you want to be happy and improve your life, it gets so much easier. When I was still depressed, my why for getting better was that I wanted to be able to follow my dreams. And I knew I couldn’t do that very well if I was still depressed. Your why might have to do with your family, your future, following your dreams, traveling the world, living independently, or anything else. 🙂
I highly recommend you read a few good personal development books or resources if you’re ready to start on this journey of getting happy. My all time favorite book is The Success Principles by Jack Canfield, and he talks about many of the things I mentioned above. Instead of thirty minutes before bed scrolling through social media each night, try spending at least half an hour reading up on personal development or trying out one of these things happy people do and see how your life starts to change. 😃
Baby steps every day. Good luck.