Happiness is the Path
“There is no path to happiness: happiness is the path.” Buddha
We all want to be happy; it is something a lot of us strive to attain one day at the end of achieving something big. We wait to be happy and really enjoy life. Haven’t you ever thought like this? Once I get that promotion at work, once I sell 1000 products, once I have traveled the world when I retire or as soon as I make my first million dollars then I will be happy.
I know it is easy to fall into this trap. It happens to all of us and can be hard to catch if we don’t stop and take a good look around in our lives once in a while. It seems easier to chase happiness then to feel it now. I’m here to provide some basic tips and knowledge that I have learned and put to the test myself to help you be happy now and not be on a never-ending roller coaster of “achieving” happiness one day.
What is being happy?
Happy – feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.
6 ways to get on your Path to Happiness
Express Gratitude Daily
Gratitude is the quality of being thankful. This is the foundation of creating happiness in your life now. Being thankful and grateful for everything you already have in your life. A great easy way to express this is everyday when you wake up and again before you go to sleep. Write out 3 things you are grateful for in the morning and be specific.
I’m Grateful For:
1. Being healthy
2. Having a great job
3. My supporting family
If you have a journal or a daily planner it would be a great place to write down your daily gratitude list. Each day at the beginning of my day in my planner I write these important items;
I’m Grateful for
I’m Excited about
How I can Improve
I list 3 things I’m grateful for as well as 3 things I’m excited about that day. At the end of the day anytime before bed I finish that page with 3 of today’s wins as well as 1 way I can improve my day.
This is a great tool I use daily which helps me reflect and really think about what I already have which is so important to me now. It allows me to take the necessary time to think about what I’m truly grateful for and how lucky I am. Even if your life seems to be low at this point and time really dig deep and come up with 3 things you are grateful for. This allows you to be happy in the present.
Another great way to express gratitude to see everyday is to make a giant list of everything and anything you are thankful to have in your life.
My list would look something like;
-Having my health
-Roof over my head
-Food on the table everyday
-Drinking water out of my tap
-Electricity in my home
-Running water and toilets
-Great coffee each morning
-Someone to spend my days with
-Pizza because who doesn’t love pizza…
-High fitness level
-Ability to learn and grow
-Watching the sunset each night
Post this list on your bathroom mirror so you see it every single day. Read it aloud and smile. Expressing gratitude can be a real game changer for you in your life to be happy now. One item I can highly recommend which I have used is The Five-Minute Journal.
It is easy effective and is at the basis of gratitude. With just 5 minutes a day you can truly make a difference in feeling great.!
Spend Time With Those Who Matter
This can be anyone from your parents, siblings, partner, kids, friends, or anyone else who you genuinely enjoy spending your time with. These are the people who as soon as you see them you smile with a huge grin on your face. When I travel back home to Ontario and I see friends I have not seen for a while we all these big grins. I never really noticed until a couple of years ago and laughed about it to myself later. We need to kickback and relax with people who add value to our lives. I like to go back and visit my parents 3-4 times a year. They are extremely important to me and are a big part of my life. This not only makes me happy and able to see other friends on the same trip but makes them incredibly happy as well.
Take a day off work and get back to the basics. Spend time with loved ones and people who make you laugh and smile. It is beneficial to all of you. Eat, socialize, and have fun. I realize now a days we are all so caught up in our own “lives”, but I really think it’s important to socialize and be around others. You can go to your families place every Sunday for a family dinner. Or schedule a movie night with your friends to go out somewhere or stay in.
There is something special about spending time with others and getting different perspective and gaining more knowledge. Ensure the people you hang out with are positive and optimistic. Your environment truly does determine where you are and where your headed. Make sure the people around you are supportive and caring.
When we laugh and smile around friends and family, we feel good and they do too. Say yes to more outings and enjoy the time you all spend together.
Exercise 3 x week
Exercising 3 x a week has a ton of benefits as I go into more detail in my E-book Optimal Health(hyperlink). Exercise is so good for both your body and mind. It releases endorphins in your body which make you feel great.
Endorphins - the bodies natural pain killers. Feelings of euphoria and general well-being.
Who doesn’t want to release more endorphins? These can be that natural high you feel after a workout or a run. The feeling of greatness, accomplishment, and happiness. Create a strong discipline in your life to carry into other areas to dominate. Be healthy and happy all at once.
I’ve exercised my entire life and have reaped endless benefits over the years. If you create the habit of going to the gym or doing some sort of physical exercise 3 or more times a week it can work wonders. Make time and schedule it into your calendar. Find a routine that works for you that you enjoy and have fun at the same time.
Sign up for a team sport or join a running club. Find something that interests you and that pushes you out of your comfort zone slightly. We all need to be pushed and motivated by others to reach our real potential. You’ll feel happy by being around others and competing with one another.
Get some Headspace
Meditation may seem like it is only for monks, but I assure you getting clear in your mind and thoughts can be enormously powerful for you over your entire lifetime. Meditation allows you to focus, be present and mindful. It is a workout for your brain and can help reduce stress, increase calmness and clarity, and promote happiness. It takes practice just like going to the gym to gain strength and harness more focus.
I started using meditation to elevate my life more than 3 + years ago. I started getting more interested in successful people and the qualities they embodied. I started to read a lot more and figured if I could emulate some of the greats, I too can become one of them. I once thought meditation was “weird and odd” although I didn’t really know exactly what it was. Meditation is all about being silent with yourself and focus on the breath. It can help you to control your emotions day to day and not allow yourself to get to bent out of shape over day to day nuisances.
Successful people who meditate:
A lot of successful people meditate and use it to be centered and stay focused. It’s a great time to be present with your breath and be still. I like to be able to disconnect and have time to be quite and stay with my own thoughts for at least 10 minutes a day.
I highly recommend downloading and using the app Headspace. I’ve used it from day one and cannot say enough about this powerful habit which I have continued with this app. It is a very basic guided meditation app for beginners and more advanced users. It starts as low as 1-minute sessions to start which can be done by anyone. Without it I most likely would have never got into the practice of meditation. It seems weird and foreign to so many and I think this app really gets down to the bare bones and makes it easy and accessible for anyone to start and have a consistent practice everyday.
Alone time is important for everyone. We all are so connected these days we really do need some time to be on our own and recharge our batteries so to speak. Even if you enjoy spending most of your time with others it’s a good idea to spend some of your time on your own with your own thoughts.
Things you can do on your own to relax and chill out are:
-Listen to music
-Watch a movie
-Imagine a great life ahead
Being alone allows you to be and think more creatively. When we are not trying to think of something or get to some result, our minds can come up with some spectacular ideas or insights. Have you ever had the most epic ideas in the shower..? I know I have, things just seem to flow to you easily and effortlessly. This is because we are relaxed and allow ourselves to be clear. We are in a state of relaxation and clarity where our minds are free to run free so to speak.
Spending time alone can be much needed in many cases for many who push themselves to the edge at work and in life. We all need to relax and take that time for our bodies and brain to recover from the stress and exhaustion we like to endure daily. How can you really be happy when your stressed to the max and have no time for yourself? Even if you can only spend 15 minutes a day to be alone it’s better then no time at all.
Why is it the world is more connected then it ever has been in our entire existence, yet we are all more disconnected from each other.? I don’t understand why everyone is glued to their screens every minute of everyday. It is a huge waste of time (for the most part) to scroll down the same endless feeds that have no bottoms, no purpose and no real useful insights for the most part.
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Ferris Bueller
Put the phone down look around, go for a walk, and enjoy the trees blowing in the wind and the sun in the sky. Leave your phone in the car or at home and stop being so glued to it. Everyone makes excuses as why they always need it on them. It feels good to be disconnected. 15 years ago, we all lived completely different lives. People played outside and explored. Now we explore Instagram and Facebook. Although these tools and apps most of us use everyday can be valuable tools to connect and promote your business and so on. I believe now they are mainly time wasters and another thing to keep us busy more than anything.
The book Deep Work written by Cal Newport is fantastic which has helped me to steer away from social media and being too connected. Newport states the difference between shallow work and deep work. Deep work is intense concentration in a distraction free environment. This will help you to be happier by doing more important tasks and less time wasting. Successful people all over the world are still engaging in deep work to build amazing companies, write unbelievable books and invent new products and ideas. I believe it can help you really focus on what’s important to you.
Start being happier now with the 5 tools I’ve provided you with
2. Spend Time With Those Who Matter
3. Exercise 3 x week
4. Get some Headspace
5. Be Alone
Practice any or all these today to live a happier life now. Stop waiting to achieve happiness and go out there and feel it now. Why prolong your own happiness any longer when you have what you already need within you.. Make a positive change today for the better, live that life you want. Smile more laugh harder and when life serves you lemons make some lemonade. Thanks so much for taking time out of your day to spend it with me, I greatly appreciate it and I hope you come back again.
All the best,