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Want To Live A Happier Life? Here Are 11 Unmissable And Positive Habits.

Want To Live A Happier Life? Here Are 11 Unmissable And Positive Habits.

“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” — Dalai Lama

Having a happier life is something we all always strive for, and being happy encompasses so many aspects—mental, physical and spiritual—of our lives.

One of the key foundations of having a happier life is to be consistent in doing things that manifest happiness. It is important to cultivate the right habits to ensure we live a happier life. Some people do it well while others don’t. What’s good to know is that everyone can be happy by incorporating some powerful habits into their daily lives.

What I’ve learned from being happy is that no matter how bad our days get, happiness can be found, especially when we consistently try to consciously be happy.

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Consider these 11 habits to enhance your life and make it as happy as you possibly can.

1. Surround yourself with people who matter.

It’s amazing how much the people around us can affect our emotions. As quoted by Jim Rohn, “We are an average of the five people we spend the most time with.” Spend more time with people who matter and remove those who do not have a good and positive impact on your life. These people with positive, happy energy can bring happiness into your life just because you’re constantly surrounded by them.

2. Learn how to relax when setbacks arise.

We do not live in a perfect world. Some days are great; some days are not. Some days we think; some days we relax with a good book. Some days, the buses run extremely late, and you swear you’ll never take the public transport ever again. Accept the fact that that things may not go as planned. Instead of trying to change something you can’t, focus your energy on changing something that is within your control.

Check this out: The 5-minute Guide To Meditation: Anywhere, Anytime.

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3. Laugh in the middle of a busy day.

It’s 3 PM on a Friday afternoon and you’re desperate to leave the office. On top of the work you have, you’re running close to a super important deadline. Instead of blaming everything not going your way, take a moment to laugh. Ever wondered why Friends is entertaining to watch? Because they make jokes no matter how life is going down, something we should do more often, especially on a busy day.

4. Do not compare yourself to others.

Measure your own successes based on your progress, and only yours. All of our lives are unique, and no one is better than any one else. Try not to think that you are better than anyone else as it promotes unhealthy superiority and can be detrimental to your happiness.

5. See that colleague in the beautiful new dress? Compliment her.

Everyone loves compliments, including that colleague who just walked in on a Monday morning in a beautiful dress. Being kind to others, like passing random compliments, is contagious and most importantly, it makes people happy, boosting self-esteem and confidence. Don’t be afraid to tell people how great they look, or how awesome their smile is. It’ll do good for them, and you!

6. Stop trying to please others.

It’s tiring and you will soon run out of time to please yourself, period.

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You may also like: 10 Ways To Always Be Yourself And Live Happily

7. Focus on the present moment.

Take some time every day to focus on the present moment; it is the only certain time we have in our life. Try not to think about the negative past experiences and embrace the time you have now. You’ll soon find that even the slightest thing that you do at this moment can bring about happiness for many hours and days to come.

8. Easy, Tiger! Learn how to control your emotions and reactions.

It’s not worth the punch when a co-worker is trying to be funny. It’s not worth the argument when your partner is testing your patience. And it’s definitely not worth the emotions. Don’t compromise on your happiness just because someone is trying to pick a fight. Like Disney’s Frozen, Let It Go and be happier.

9. Find time to workout regularly and eat well.

Exercise can produce tons of feel-good hormones—endorphins, serotonin and dopamine just to name a few. These hormones can help avoid some symptoms of stress and depression. Feeding your body with whole and nutritious foods, on the other hand, can positively impact your body in both the short and long term. Find time to schedule in a workout even if it’s only thirty minutes and do something you love. Eat well because food that are good for you can help you stay focused and more energized, and happier as a whole.

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Also on Lifehack: 7 Things You Should Stop Doing When Trying To Be Healthy

10. Learn how to accept constructive criticism.

No one is always right. Other people may have better judgement, experience and knowledge than you do. If you’ve made a mistake, learn how to accept it and the constructive criticism that comes along with it. Put your ego aside because it won’t do any good to your happy factor.

11. Sit cross-legged, be silly, and do something fun.

In other words, be child-like. Ever wondered why children are always so carefree and happy? That’s because they don’t have anything to worry about. Try to set aside a few hours a day bringing your inner child out and focus on doing something fun just for the sake of it, and for the sake of making yourself happy.

What other habits do you practice to live a happier life?

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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