Each of us has a few universal truths when it comes to being happy.
Sometimes, we get carried away in the complexities of life and forget what really does create a sense of happiness and well-being within us.
It doesn’t take reading a bazillion books on “How to Be Happy,” or “Don’t Be A Gloomy Gus,” all it takes is awareness without resistance and perhaps, a few of the items below.
The Happiness Manifesto
1. Keep short lists.
No need for lengthy lists of any nature—whether it’s a to do list, what you want in a partner, a manifesto or your groceries. Keep it to what’s manageable rather than having too much to remember and the added pressure.
2. Be kind to ourselves.
When we forgive and accept ourselves for all that we are including our flaws, we can embrace the practice of kindness. We’re able to share that with others too. Love is always there; we just have to allow it inside and out.
3. Love what is and let go of what we don’t control.
Worrying about situations that create stress or about everything outside of us does nothing for us. If we focus the power of our love on a situation, understanding why we’re attached, then the stress can lessen and miracles may happen. If something or someone is creating heartache, how tightly are we holding onto it or them? Loosening our grip creates space to breathe and honors where we are, so we can move in a direction of our truth.
4. Be creative.
Creating our lives is where happiness lives. The decision to stop lamenting or feeling stuck in a prison of our own making launches us into creating what we want. Every moment there’s an opportunity to take action and live into the dreams of our heart and soul.
5. Stop over-thinking and be vulnerable.
If we stop thinking about all 952 possible outcomes actions that we’re yet to do, we save ourselves a lot of internal drama. Life is not nice and neat. No matter how much time we spend thinking about something, does it ever happen the way we envision? And when we spend that time thinking, the mental masturbation keeps us from experiencing. It may keep us safe, but it keeps us stuck and unhappy. Take action, any action, we can always change our minds. Being vulnerable and having our most authentic self show up no matter what action we’re taking is the only way to truly experience the moment and ourselves in it. Vulnerability means risk, but it also is the leading cause of happiness.
All roads to happiness come from within—it is a choice of perception, period.
Life doesn’t always cooperate, but if we’re at least keeping the inside lit up with accepting the entirety of who we are with love, creativity, kindness and active vulnerability without attachment to outcomes we’re in the driver’s seat to our own private Disneyland.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: elephant journal archives