26 Days to a Better Life H is for Happy # A-Z Challenge

H is for Happy

H is for Happy. You are probably asking yourself, how could I possibly change my situation and be happy in 26 days? You can and it starts with you. Happy is a choice. It’s as simple as that. You can change your mind and be happy right this second. Just change your thoughts, your perspective, your reaction to everyday occurrences. Is it really that simple?

Happy is a choice

We all know people that seem to just glide through life. No matter what set backs it hands them. How do they do it? Do they have some great secret that just lets life’s little upsets just roll of like water off a duck’s back? Some secret sauce?

The Secret Sauce to Happy

  1. Make the choice
  2. Set your Attitude to Positive
  3. Live in the present
  4. Stop thinking and start doing

Make the Choice

Consciously choose to be happy. I love this quote from Henry David Thoreau “Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.” I know I just told you to make a choice, then I give you a quote about not chasing happiness. Too often we think, If I do this…or achieve that…then I will be happy. We see examples of happy in movies and books and for some reason they always involve some great accomplishment or epiphany. It’s simply not the case. The key to happy regardless of your circumstances is changing your mind. Making a choice to be happy today and enjoying the things you have in your life.

Example

It’s easy to get stuck in a pattern of seeing what you don’t have, versus focusing on the good things you have in your life. I started to get into a real funk this morning as I was working on our income taxes. This brought on this thought pattern of worrying and fretting about the big check we will more than likely have to write at the end of this week. I could choose to focus on how that will deplete our savings, put off some home improvement projects and countless other things.

I really can’t change the situation about having to write the check. What I can change is my perspective about writing that check. We have to write that check because we have good jobs. That is a blessing when there are so many other people that don’t have a good job, a home, the savings to write the check. We are truly blessed and I’m grateful for those blessings. A simple shift in my perspective. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still not thrilled about writing the check. However, I’m not going to let it ruin my day or my week. It’s a little setback in my financial plan. It’s not going to change me being happy with my life.

Set Your Attitude to Positive

This isn’t always easy, it takes a lot of practice and some mental strength. You need to engage your own version of the thought police. Every thought that enters your head, turn it over, look at it and choose to accept or reject it. At first you may spend a lot of time rejecting, but if you practice it works. For additional thoughts on keeping a positive attitude, read this.

Example

When I first thought of writing this post, my thoughts turned to “no one will read that”, “is that really how you want to spend Sunday”? I could have listened, and I did for awhile. I decided to shut that off. What if one person read it and it helped them? What if it changed one person’s attitude? It would be worth it. It would make me happy and perhaps someone else. Make a conscious effort to reject those negative thoughts.

Live in the Present

Do you ever find yourself thinking: I’ll be happy when I finish school? or when I have that job? or when I meet this person? I’ve was guilty of this for so many years. So much time wasted. Thinking an education, a job, a person would be the secret sauce that got me to this far away place called happy. All I really needed to do to be happy was to stop and smell the roses. To take stock in the things I had all ready. My health, a beautiful day, a loving family. Stop putting conditions on happy. Take stock of all the wonderful things in your life. The sunshine, the sound of the rain, the friends and family around you. Happy is a choice, choose it today.

Stop Thinking and Start Doing

Like Thoreau’s butterfly, turn your attention to something else. Occupy your mind, your hands, your body. Focus on good thoughts and put yourself to work. Wash the dishes, write in a journal, go for a walk. Focus on the little things and enjoy them. Find happiness in a clean kitchen, a good meal or the sun on your face. H is for Happy Choose Happy.

 




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