If you want a more peaceful life, it helps to be happy. It’s not an absolute requirement, but it makes it a lot easier. Being happy comes easy for many, but some people have to work at it. If you’re one of the ones who has to work at it, or just if you would like to have a happier more peaceful life than you have now, here are some ideas for you to consider.
We all have challenges in our lives and we all have so many blessings we couldn’t count them all if we tried. Focus on the blessings and be grateful. Give thanks for the good things rather than moaning and complaining about the challenges.
Finding things that you are grateful for and focusing on them makes those challenges seem much smaller and easier to overcome. Your burden will be lightened and your life a little happier.
Sitting around, moping, or watching television all day does nothing to improve your happiness. Your body needs to move. Exercise is an important piece of the happiness puzzle because it raises the happy hormones and lowers the stress levels. It’s also good for your heart, your circulation, and – believe it or not – your brain health. People who exercise consistently tend to have less age related memory issues.
Don’t like to exercise (true confessions, neither do I)? Then find movement that you like. You could go for a walk, hike through nature, dance to your favorite music, or take up yoga or a martial art. Whatever helps your body move more, get the circulation going, and has you up and moving will work.
These are the small type of goals that get you through the day, week, the month, or the year. You could set goals to accomplish specific tasks, and reward yourself once they are finished. You could consider setting a goal of getting together with friends or family, which could be the reward in yourself. This type of small goal is intended to give you something to look forward to. Once you do what is necessary to reach it, you will feel your happiness increase.
If you read my blogs, you know I say this a lot. We need to stay focused on what is going on right now, in the present time. Yesterday is gone, and you can’t change it. Tomorrow isn’t here yet, and if you choose to worry about it, you are just wasting the valuable time you have for today. Enjoy what’s going on around you. I’m not telling you to ignore the future, I’m just telling you not to be obsessed or worrying about it.
Get up and get going
Find your internal time clock and then follow it. Some of us wake up early and go to bed early. Some of us prefer to stay up later, and get up later. Whichever works for your body, that is fine.
The key to waking up and going to bed is that when you go to bed, be ready to rest. Turn off any distractions, and do what you need to get a restful night of sleep. When you wake up, get up and get going. You should be rested, and your energy should be good. It’s tempting to want to stay in the comfy bed a little longer, but don’t – you don’t want to waste the day.
Experiment with your rising and sleeping times until you find what works best for you, and then stick with it. Be as consistent as possible with the time you go to bed and the time you get up. Once that habit is established you can set a schedule that optimizes your day. It makes for a happier life.
Eliminate the downers
Are there things you do every day that just bring you down? See if you can eliminate them or go about them in a different way. Maybe, if it is something like a chore or errand, you could even pay or trade services for someone to take care of it for you. Make your life easier by eliminating the things that zap your energy, zap your moods, and zap your happiness. It may be difficult at first, but you will thank yourself later.
If you want to increase your happiness, one of the easiest ways to do it is to help someone else out. Give back some of what you have received in the past. Did someone secretly buy your coffee in line recently? How about buying that single mom’s dinner at the drive through?
Regularly find ways to volunteer with local community organizations, a church, a soup kitchen, or a local homeless shelter. Offer to help a neighbor who has a need or visit a shut in. Giving back is one of the most rewarding things you can do and will definitely increase your happiness factor.
Work towards something bigger than you
What is your life long dream? What is one thing you’ve always wanted to do? Take a giant step and put together a plan to accomplish it. It may seem too big at first, but you have done so many things so far in life, what makes you think you can’t do this, too?
Let go of the things getting in the way of your peace. Forgive those that you feel have wronged you or hurt you. It will give you a sense of freedom you may have never experienced before. You no longer have to lug around the grudges or carry the heavy heart around. Your new, lighter life will definitely increase your happiness.
Learn something new as often as you can. Keep your brain young by learning something new every day. Take a course, read good books, do some self study. What do you want to learn? Go for it – the possibilities are endless.
We all strive to be happy. It has been argued by many philosophers that it’s the only true drive we have, that everything we do is an attempt to feel better about ourselves or our lives. (Let me know your opinion on this in the comments.)
These ideas are just ideas – they aren’t set in stone, and some will resonate with you, some may not. Listen to your heart and trust what you hear. Keep your intentions pure, and intend to be happy.
Like we said in the beginning, it’s not essential for a peaceful life, but it sure makes it easier to get there.
Find your purpose – find your joy!
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Did you find a few more ideas of your own? If so, I’d love to hear about them in the comments, and as always please reach out with your thoughts.