Advertising
Advertising

This Is the One Reason Why You Aren’t Happy

This Is the One Reason Why You Aren’t Happy

I used to tie my happiness to other people and their expectations of me, particularly at school and at home. I’d think:

“When I get an A it’ll make them happy, then I’ll be happy.”

“If I please all my teachers, then I’ll be happy.”

“If I please my parents, then I’ll be happy.”

Advertising

Ultimately, I was always thinking, “If I make ‘them’ happy, then I’ll be happy.”

A nice sentiment I’m sure you’ll agree. The only teeny, tiny, slight problem was that I wasn’t happy. I’d tied my happiness to other people and totally forgotten about whether what I was doing was actually making me happy. And, really, wouldn’t they have wanted me to do what I wanted rather than constantly trying to make them happy? It’s ridiculously obvious when written down like this, but if this is what you do, you’re not at all alone.

The trap of tying your happiness to external factors

If you tie your happiness to other people, you’ll never be able to control it, because you can’t control them. If they’re not happy or behaving how you want them to, what does that mean for you? Similarly, if you tie your happiness to your dreams and goals and achievements, it’ll always be fleeting. Because there’s always another dream or goal or achievement.

If you tie your happiness to stuff, it won’t last. Because you’ll always want more stuff. And you’ll always say, “When I get that, then I’ll be happy.” If you tie your happiness to money, it will evade you, because there’s always more money to earn. You’ll say, “When I have this much, then I’ll be happy.”

Advertising

This is why people who’ve achieved a lot sometimes talk about having that empty feeling: they’ve tied their happiness to something external. Yes, they’ve achieved a lot and have loads of money and stuff, but they’re the people who do say, “When I’ve achieved this, then I’ll be happy,” “When I’ve got this much money, I’ll be happy.” It’s never ending because, as I’ve explained, there’s always something else. More stuff. More money.

The one reason why you aren’t happy is…

So what’s the one reason why you aren’t happy? It’s because you’re not tying your happiness to yourself. You’re not tying it to who you are. You’re 100% in control of these things, and you can therefore be as happy as you want, for as long as you want, wherever you are. Of course, it’ll get rocked from time to time, but it can always come back to the rock-solid base that is you. And yes, you’ll grow and evolve, but you’ll still be you. You own your happiness. We all do.

Now I hear you ask, “Matt, oh wise one (okay, you probably didn’t say that), how did you tie your happiness to yourself?” I’ll tell you. I found out what was important to me. What really mattered to me, and why. Because that’s who I was — and am — and once I admitted who I truly was, I was so proud of me. I was happy.

Why you should choose to be happy

A nurse who worked in a hospice conducted a study on the regrets of the dying, and came out with a top 5 (look it up; it’s extremely powerful). One of the regrets, which really hit me at the time I read it, was: “I wish that I had let myself be happier.” To reiterate: this is one of the top 5 regrets of people who are at the end of their lives. I think that’s very telling. Perhaps they finally realized that happiness was a choice. Do you let yourself be happy? If you died tomorrow, would you have the same regret?

Advertising

If you’re not totally happy (which is not the same as being sad or depressed), I’ll leave you with these questions:

What would happen if you were happy?

What do you have to let go of to be happy?

When you allow yourself to be happy, what will you do?

Advertising

 

Want to read even more cool stuff about happiness? 20 Definitions Of Happiness You Need To Know

Featured photo credit: Nina Matthews via flickr.com

More by this author

24 Questions That Awaken The Real You An Open Letter To the 5 Year Old Me 16 Things I Learned from Taking the #100happydays Challenge 26 Things I’ve Learned Since Entering The Working World 8 Depressing Things That Happen When You Don’t Talk About A Problem, And 3 Uplifting Things That Happen When You Do

Trending in Productivity

1 15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done 2 50 Motivational Quotes for Work to Inspire Success 3 How to Take Notes Effectively: Powerful Note-Taking Techniques 4 15 Inspiring Journal Ideas to Set You up for Success 5 11 Organizational Skills That Every Smart Leader Needs

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on September 18, 2019

15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done

15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done

You may think that you don’t have time for office organization, but if you really knew how much time that disorganization cost you, you’d reconsider.

Rearranging and moving piles occasionally doesn’t count. Neither does clearing off your desk, if you swipe the mess into a bin, or a desk drawer.

A relatively neat and orderly office space clears the way for higher productivity and less wasted time.

Organizing your office doesn’t have to take days, it can be done a little at a time. In fact, maintaining an organized office is much more effective if you treat it like an on-going project, instead of a massive assault.

So, if you’re ready to get started, the following organizing tips will help you transform your office into an efficient workspace.

1. Purge Your Office

De-clutter, empty, shred, get rid of everything that you don’t need or want. Look around. What haven’t you used in a while?

Take one area at a time. If it doesn’t work, send it out for repair or toss it. If you haven’t used it in months and can’t think of when you’ll actually need it, out it goes. This goes for furniture, equipment, supplies, etc.

Advertising

Don’t forget about knick-knacks, plants (real or artificial), and decorations – if they’re covered with dust and make your office look shabby, they’re fair game.

2. Gather and Redistribute

Gather up every item that isn’t where it belongs and put it where it does.

3. Establish Work “Zones”

Decide what type of activity happens in each area of your office. You’ll probably have a main workspace (most likely your desk,) a reference area (filing cabinet, shelves, binders,) and a supply area (closet, shelves or drawers.)

Place the appropriate equipment and supplies are located in the proper area as much as possible.

4. Close Proximity

Position the equipment and supplies that you use most within reach. Things that you rarely use can be stored or put away.

5. Get a Good Labeler

Choose a label maker that’s simple to use. Take the time to label shelves, bins, baskets drawers. Not only will it remind you where things go, but it will also help others who may have a need to find, use, or put away anything in your workspace.

6. Revise Your Filing System

As we move fully into the digital age, the need to store paper files has decreased.

Advertising

What can your store digitally? Are you duplicating files? You may be able to eliminate some of the files and folders you’ve used in the past. If you’re storing files on your computer, make sure you are doing regular back-ups.

Here’re some storage ideas for creating a smooth filing system:

  • Create a meeting folder – Put all “items to be discussed” in there along with items that need to be handed off, reports that need to be given, etc. It’ll help you be prepared for meetings and save you stress in the even that a meeting is moved up.
  • Create a WOR folder – So much of our messy papers are things that are on hold until someone else responds or acts. Corral them in a WOR (Waiting on Response) folder. Check it every few days for outstanding actions you may need to follow-up on.
  • Storage boxes – Use inexpensive storage boxes to keep archived files and get them out of your current file space.
  • Magazine boxes – Use magazine boxes or binders to store magazines and catalogs you really want to store. Please make sure you really need them for reference or research, otherwise recycle them, or give away.
  • Reading folder – Designate a file for print articles and documents you want to read that aren’t urgent.
  • Archive files – When a project is complete, put all of the materials together and file them away. Keep your “working folders” for projects in progress.
  • File weekly – Don’t let your filing pile up. Put your papers in a “To File” folder and file everything once a week.

Learn more tips on organizing your files here: How to Organize Your Files for Better Productivity

7. Clear off Your Desk

Remove everything, clean it thoroughly and put back only those items that are essential for daily use.

If you have difficulty declutter stuff, this Declutter Formula will help you throw away stuff without regretting later.

8. Organize your Desktop

Now that you’ve streamlined your desktop, it’s a good idea to organize it.

Use desktop organizers or containers to organize the items on your desk. Use trays for papers, containers for smaller items.

Advertising

Don’t forget your computer desktop! Make sure the files or images are all in organized folders. I’d recommend you clear your computer desktop everyday before you leave work.

9. Organize Your Drawers

Put items used together in the same drawer space, stamps with envelopes, sticky pads with notepads, etc.

Use drawer organizers for little items – paper clips, tacks, etc. Use a separate drawer for personal items.

10. Separate Inboxes

If you work regularly with other people, create a folder, tray, or inbox for each.

11. Clear Your Piles

Hopefully with your new organized office, you won’t create piles of paper anymore, but you still have to sort through the old ones.

Go through the pile (a little at a time if necessary) and put it in the appropriate place or dump it.

12. Sort Mails

Don’t just stick mail in a pile to be sorted or rifle through and take out the pieces you need right now. Sort it as soon as you get it – To act, To read, To file, To delegate or hand off. .

Advertising

13. Assign Discard Dates

You don’t need to keep every piece of paper indefinitely. Mark on files or documents when they can be tossed or shredded.

Some legal or financial documents must be kept for specified length of time. Make sure you know what those requirements are.

14. Filter Your Emails

Some emails are important to read, others are just not that important.

When you use the filter system to label different types of emails, you know their priority and which to reply first.

Take a look at these tips to achieve inbox zero: The Ultimate Way to get to Inbox Zero

15. Straighten Your Desk

At the end of the day, do a quick straighten, so you have a clean start the next day.

Bottom Line

Use one tip or try them all. The amount of effort you put into creating and maintaining an efficient work area will pay off in a big way.

Instead of spending time looking for things and shuffling piles, you’ll be able to spend your time…well…working and you’ll enjoy being clutter free!

More Organizing Hacks

Featured photo credit: Alesia Kazantceva via unsplash.com

Read Next