Ah the new year, full of hope and excitement.
I’d like to think people are the most at peace on New Years Eve. They have problems, sure, but they have goals in mind on how to become happier people. I wish I could be like that all year round. In the past couple years, I’ve learned that happiness really can and should be found in the here and now. Of course, past memories and future goals can make you happy, but being happy in the present can bring you to a whole new level of joy.
This is not an easy thing to accomplish, as most people are already looking ahead (or behind). But I can let you in on what I’ve found helps me concentrate on my present.
1. Celebrate your accomplishments
I mean every, little accomplishment. Even if you’re celebrating with a
bottle glass of wine & a cupcake. Do it. This will help you stop focusing on the goals you want to accomplish in the future and instead focus on what you’re accomplishing NOW.
Some of the most productive people are always looking ahead, planning new goals. That’s great. Those people are more often than not very successful. But, they could probably improve on their happiness. I’m one of these people and I can honestly say that celebrating little accomplishments in your professional and personal life can help you feel happier about where you are in this exact moment.
2. Have no regrets
This is a tough one, but have you realized that some of the happiest people will tell you they have no regrets? It’s not because they did life perfectly, it’s because they realize the value in every “mistake”.
If you were to go back and change something you thought you did wrong, you wouldn’t be the person you are today. Even if you’re not entirely happy with your life, just think “I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be”, that mantra has helped me time and time again.
3. Be grateful for the bare minimum
YOU ARE ALIVE. You are a living, breathing human being who hopefully is healthy and has a roof over your head (and probably a phone or computer since you’re reading this). You have SO much to be grateful for.
Being grateful for life has gotten me out of slumps more times than I can count.
4. Don’t let bumps in the road defeat you
It is SO easy to crumble when things go wrong. I’m pretty sure we all do it, but it’s time to break that habit now (or at least in 2016).
The next time something doesn’t go the way you hoped, take some deep breaths and collect yourself. Now start devising a plan to make things right. Being a problem solver instead of a problem dweller can really change your life.
5. Lift others up
Celebrate your loved ones successes!
We compare ourselves to others way too often. When your friend gets a promotion at work, you shouldn’t feel bad that you haven’t yet. You should be happy for them!
By celebrating others, you will break the habit of comparing yourself with them, which will in turn make you more content with your life.
This sounds silly but I read once that smiling, even when you’re not happy, can make you feel better. This study shows that smiling alone genuinely decreases stress.
Next time you’re having a bad day, force a smile and see what happens. Spoiler: you’ll feel happier (I’ve tried it).
What are some personal goals you have for 2016? Share with us in the comments below!
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Originally posted on December 14, 2015 @ 4:00 PM