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Happiness. What is it, really? It can range from joy, excitement, contentment, and every positive emotion in between. But, how do we get there? What really makes us the happiest?

If you are struggling with finding what you believe to be true happiness, then perhaps you will find the answer here, Five Common Sense Ways to Find Happiness. What is important to remember is that happiness is different for each person. It may not be easy to decipher without a little digging into what you may be doing to cause yourself unhappiness, first.

Let’s get started.

Don’t Listen to the negativity

I hate to break the bad news to you, but there are always naysayers and negative people in every crowd, family, association, and gathering. Whether or not they mean to be that way is not known, but what is known is that they translate everything into negativity.

That is why it is so important to focus on your unique spirit, your passion, and calling. No matter what anyone else thinks or says, you know you, and you know what is important to you. Stick to your goals and dreams and deflect the negativity of others, and be happy about who you are.

Create Purposeful and Meaningful Goals

Daily life includes responsibilities and commitments, some of which cannot be changed. So, how can you find happiness there?

Most of you go through each day with little focus or direction. You go to work, school, pick up the kids, run errands, pay bills, and find time to watch a movie somewhere in between. That is daily life, AKA “the grind”, and that is why it is so important to set short and long term goals.

Having something to work toward, and something to look forward to gives you a sense of purpose beyond the “grind.”

Think about where you are right now, and where you want to be in six months, a year, or even five years. What is important to you? Now, write those goals down. Research shows that you are more likely to achieve when we write them down.

Your life is not meant to be a grind. One way to find happiness in the every day is to create purposeful and meaningful goals that give you direction and fulfillment.

Stop Complaining

This one is a difficult one. I am sure that there is something in your day about which you will complain. I think we all have justification for complaining every now and again.

One former boss always said something which really made sense and helped me to cope with my complaints. He said, “It is okay to complain, as long as you also come up with a potential solution.”

happiness

Ever since I allow myself to complain about whatever really upsets me, but I always with a follow-up about how I can change or remedy it on my end. How enlightening! As they say in basketball, “Take the ball and pivot in another direction.”

Happiness is when you can make the necessary changes to what bothers you the most.

Stop Comparing

There is always someone better, and always someone worse. Some have more money, some have less. Some are prettier than others. Some dress nicer. Some are more athletic. Some are more professional. You get the idea.

When you make negative comparisons, you start to believe that you are not as good or worthy as others. This is a recipe for disaster when it comes to happiness. You must remember that you are “more” in many categories, too. You have your own gifts and talents.

Don’t compare, unless you want to learn from, or model yourself after, good examples.

If I started negative comparisons, it might include that I am old, not as fit as I would like to be, and less financially stable than some. In doing this, I have already dismissed my good qualities. I am as fit as many younger people. I have enough to pay my bills. I constantly seek and engage in opportunities.

What you think translates into how you feel. If you think negatively or make negative assumptions about yourself based on comparisons, you will limit your happiness. No more negative comparisons!

Follow your dreams and passions

I have told this story many times. I’ve been writing since ten years of age. It took me until I turned 50 years old to finally be brave enough to submit a query to a magazine. They accepted! Now I write for six magazines and have published a book!

Achieving dreams is very fulfilling and allows you to be happy with yourself. There are a few steps you need to apply, however, in order to reach your dreams. In a nutshell:

  • Stop being afraid
  • Realize that everyone makes mistakes
  • You are not stuck if you choose to follow one direction; dreams and passions can change
  • Everyone has a purpose

Taking a small risk to believe in yourself can lead to big rewards. The most successful people in the world had to try over and over and over to proclaim their biggest success. The more you try, the better your chance for success. And, in the interim, you learn a lot, too.

Achieving my dreams has brought me happiness because I am proud of the hard work and effort that has paid off. If I had started professionally writing earlier, I may have had a dozen books out by now, but I never gave myself the chance. Best news of all…it’s never too late to start.

That elusive thing we call happiness is not as far away as you think. These principles will give you start in a new and positive direction. Today could be the first day to trust that you not only deserve happiness, you can achieve it.

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