Human beings are such interesting creatures. The only creatures that place personal “happiness” above safety and health. For thousands of years, humans have walked this earth like nomads of the soul, searching for happiness.
Happiness is this way. No, this way. If you do this you will be happy. No, wait, this is what really makes you happy.
Did you hear about this car? This job? This brand? If you look like this you will be happy forever. If only I was younger I would be happier, if only I was older.
Humans roam all corners of the earth searching high and low for happiness. What makes one happy today will not do the job tomorrow and what makes you happy doesn’t do the trick for me.
So how do we find it? Where is happiness?
What if happiness can’t be found at all? What if in all this searching we are just confusing ourselves and wasting our time?
I have heard this often, but the madness might have some truth. Perhaps…..
Happiness is a choice.
What if the big fat key to the big fat door is that happiness is nothing more than a choice? A choice of picking out a fresh pair of underwear in the morning.
When meditating we are taught to focus on our breath. In each moment focus on the expanding and contracting of the lungs, the chest, the belly. when distracted you bring your focus right back to breathing. After a few minutes of this, you are meditating. Focus on the breath.
Concentration becomes more achievable the more you practice. Thoughts still come and go but the focus stays on the breath.
What if happiness is just like meditating? What if instead of focusing on breathing we focus on happiness. No pressure or force, just concentration. When we become distracted we just bring the focus right back to happiness.
Sounds so simple.
But how can we bring our attention back to happiness if we still don’t know what it is?
These tips will help you to shift your focus to happiness every time you become distracted by your own feelings. Just like breathing in meditation use these tools to help you focus on happiness.
1. Create a Happiness List
Write out a list of things that make you happy. Check out a previous post of mine Happiness 101 simple things. Why do I suggest doing this? If happiness is a choice then choose to do one of the things that bring you happiness every day. Just one.
You are choosing happiness by partaking in an act that brings you happiness. Makes sense right? Having a list to choose from when you need a boost or motivation will make this process easier for you!
2. Keep it Simple
If you’re holding out for meeting the man of your dreams, winning the lottery or getting your dream job you are probably setting yourself up for unhappy times ahead. I am not saying that having goals, dreams or standards is a waste of time. Definitely not. What I am saying is that telling yourself that you will be happy once you get those things is a surefire way to set yourself up for failure. Happiness isn’t about those things. Ask the people who have success, money, and perfect careers, these people have unhappy times like anyone else. Begin looking at what you already have, keep in simple and focus your attention there.
3. Look at Photos
Open your phone, facebook or photo album and look at your memories. Photos are a great way to remember good times of happiness in your life. Most people are smiling in photos. Why? To remember a moment of happiness, to remember themselves as happy. Look back at that secret moment of happiness that your past self tried to leave you. Look at the past moments of happiness that your friends and family tried to leave you through their smiles in your photos.
4. Leave Reminders
Currently, I have two quotes as a wallpaper on my phone. “Don’t make assumptions” and “Don’t take anything personally” a personal mantra to me. I used to have “Choose happiness” this worked so well for me. Place a background on your phone, set a reminder in your schedule, write it on your fridge, set a reminder on your computer background. Place a reminder anywhere and everywhere you need or want, to remind you throughout the day to focus on happiness.
5. Vision Board
Head to the dollar store and pick up a small or large bulletin board. Cut out images or quotes from magazines or print some things from the internet and create a happiness collage for yourself. Place this on your fridge, in your bedroom or anywhere you like where you will see it daily. Create a new one every few months to keep things fresh. This will serve as another reminder to choose happiness.
6. Happiness Journal
Have you heard of The Five Minute Journal? This is an another great tool to remind you to choose happiness at the beginning of your day. Even using your own journal would be a good place to start. The idea is simple, write out the things you are grateful and happy for first thing in the morning. This will set the tone for the entire day ahead and is a great way to set the focus on happiness.
Where are you searching for happiness?