So you’re thinking is true happiness even possible? If so do you wonder what it takes to be happy? Is it where you were born? How much money you have? Being in a happy marriage? Doing a job you love? Is it as simple as ticking boxes?
No it’s not. I know people who tick every single box and are miserable. I know others who have very little money, were born “in the wrong place”, do basic jobs and are happy and fulfilled in their life.
Yet we spend so much of our time and, to a bigger extent, our money in the pursuit of happiness.
We buy handbags to make us look fancier. Shoes to make our legs longer. Clothes to make us look leaner.
We spend time and money on hair and spa treatments.
We search and we search. But so many of us are still miserable.
Why is that?
Because most of us are running away from ourselves. From who we are. From our raw, brutal truth. And until we can look ourselves fully in the mirror, until we can be honest about how we feel and who we are, it will be very hard to find happiness.
You see happiness is rarely achieved at the end of a shopping trip. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll get a high from what’s in those shopping bags for a while. But, like all drugs, it doesn’t last that long and then you need another hit.
If you can face ripping yourself open to see the exposed, broken bits inside that’s a good first step.
But most of us can’t handle doing that. It’s just too painful.
So we put on a brave face. We smile on the outside and cry on the inside. We pretend all is well in our relationship and drown our sorrows in wine. We act like our life is just great but spend hours drooling over other people’s lives on social media, wishing it were ours.
How do I know all this? Because I went through this for a time. I thought I could find happiness through new clothes, shopping trips and social media addiction. It took me hitting rock bottom and having to find another way to be happy to actually figure out that my happiness wasn’t something I’d find in the shops.
So what can actually make you happy? If it’s not the shopping trips and spa days?
- Taking in the nature around you. Looking at the flowers blossoming. Listening to the birds singing. And really taking it in.
- Being grateful for what you have. A roof over your head. People who love you. Food in the cupboards. Your health.
- Taking time to listen to your kids – that means getting down to their level, putting your phone down and looking into their eyes – and being silly with them.
- Spending time with someone you love and talking.
- Eating something that you really love and actually tasting it, rather than wolfing it down as you rush to your next task.
- Forgiving others who hurt you. Whether that is your first boyfriend aged 12 who dumped you, the driver who cut you up this morning or the boss who fired you. The more you forgive the lighter you feel.
My book “How to be happy…no matter what sh!t life throws at you” comes out this month. If you’d like a book full of nuggets on how to be happy then make sure you’re signed up to my mailing list so you can grab it at its low pre-order price. It will be available on Amazon as a paper back and a Kindle book.
Do you have any tips on how to be happier in life? Feel free to share them in the comments below because you can never have too many ways to make yourself happy after all 🙂
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