The first day of spring is such a unique and special day. It’s a day when a new season and new beginnings emerge. However, today brings more than just a new season. March 20th is also International Day of Happiness or Happiness Day. This day brings with it a gentle reminder to not only be happy but to help create more happiness in the world around us.
In a way, it saddens me to know that we actually need a day to remind us to be happy. Since when has it become commonplace to put happiness on the back burner? “When I achieve this I will be happy.” “When I meet my soul mate, I will be happy.” “When I get this job/raise I will be happy.” In reality, we are all saying, “When life is perfect, I will be happy.” But why not choose to be happy NOW? This spring, take the opportunity to focus on inner growth and adopt a new frame of mind by choosing to be happy now.
Below are the top three ways that I have used to help me to focus on being happy. Right here. Right now.
We live in a world of disconnection. Meaningful human interaction is on the decline. We’ve become slaves to technology, especially when it comes to our cell phones. There once was a time when human beings actually made eye contact. Now, most of the time, eye-to-eye contact has been replaced with screen-to-eye contact. We rely on videos to make us laugh or instant messages from friends to keep us happy. We’re addicted to our phones, frantically waiting for the next message, post or photo from a “friend” to help us feel connected and alive. Rather than soaking in the beauty around us, we’re too worried about capturing an amazing photo so that we can prove to the world that our life has meaning. The world we live in is an amazing and beautiful place. But unfortunately for some, all that is noticed is the glow of a screen. Somehow we’ve grown to believe that we need this type of connection to survive and, unfortunately, to be happy. But in reality, this is the furthest thing from the truth.
For me, rather than focusing all of my time and energy on quick, meaningless, online interactions, I choose to just be present. To look at everything with the finest detail, using all five of my senses. There’s so much more to life and it’s right there in front of us, just beyond our screens. We just need to stop, be present and take notice.
When we’re on a walk on our lunch break, eating a meal or interacting with someone, we need to focus on making the most out of the moment. Being mindful can bring us an endless amount of happiness. Just imagine all the amazing scents in nature, the beautiful color of our favorite flower, the incredible feeling of looking into the eyes of someone you love, the flavorful taste of a new food or the feel of the warm sun on your skin. There is so much more to life, when you stop and take notice.
One of my favorite life quotes is to “have an attitude of gratitude.” When we live a life of gratitude, a world of things to be grateful for opens up around us. Having gratitude means that we take time to not only notice but reflect on the things we’re thankful for. Doing so helps us to maintain a positive attitude, feel more alive, express more compassion and kindness, and even have a stronger immune system. And gratitude doesn’t need to be just for the big stuff. When we are grateful for the small things around us, our outlook changes and opportunities seem to open up in all aspects of our lives. Each day, when your feet hit the ground, express your gratitude for life, for the opportunities that were giving you and for the life you live. The more you are grateful, the more things to be grateful for will come to you and the faster your life will change!
Be a Part of Something Bigger
Let’s face it, living a life without purpose is pretty unfulfilling. When we live a life of purpose, we feel happier, more in control and we get more joy out of what we do. Having and acting on your purpose brings happiness, satisfaction and meaning to life. And what better way to gain meaning in life than in the service of others! We all have an amazing power within us to create more happiness in the world around us. We just need to start. How can we serve others? It doesn’t need to be extravagant and money doesn’t have to be involved. Look for those in need around you. Compliment others. Smile. Don’t be afraid to say hello. Volunteer your time for something you are passionate about. Whatever it is, make it count and do it with all of your heart.
The key to happiness isn’t out of reach. It’s already within each of us. We simply need to choose to be happy now. To find joy in the little things. The be grateful for what we have and to live a purposeful life.
We want to hear from you! What are some ways that you choose to be happy? Share your comments with us below!