I don’t believe we can be happy all the time, but I believe that we can be happy most of the time, and even more importantly, each day we can be happier than we were yesterday.
Some people are happy, some are not that happy, and some are just plain miserable. I’ve always wondered whether we are born happy (or unhappy), or we can somehow create our own happiness. And if we are unhappy, are we destined to be unhappy for the rest of our lives?
If we are already happy, can we become happier? As I found out from Sonja Lyubomirsky’s book, “The How of Happiness”, researchers have discovered that 50% of our happiness can be accounted for by a genetically determined set point, 10% is due to our life circumstance, and that we are responsible for the rest of 40% of our happiness. I couldn’t be happier! So it is not all lost. Even if we weren’t born the happiest people on the planet, we could still do something to become happier.
We definitely can’t change our genetically determined set point, and the secret of happiness does not lie in changing our life circumstances. Even though we may become temporarily happier when we get a raise, improve our appearance, move to a certain part of the country, or achieve some monetary goals, such happiness doesn’t last long because we rapidly adapt to positive changes. It has been proven that the human being adapts to favorable changes in health and possessions, to beauty and even to marriage. It is called hedonic adaptation and it is the worst enemy of happiness.
We still can do something for our own happiness. The secret to a happier life can be found in how we behave, what we think, and what goals we set every day for ourselves. It’s all about a few habits that will improve our perception about all the events in our lives; and even though at the beginning these habits won’t feel natural, with time they will become “ingrained” as our new routine. As Dalai Lama said: ‘Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.’
There are few things that the happiest people have in common:
– They devote a great amount of time to their friends and family;
– They express gratitude for the things they have;
– They offer to help their coworkers and passersby;
– They are optimistic regarding their future;
– They enjoy life to the fullest;
– They exercise regularly;
– They have lifelong goals and ambitions;
– They show balance and control when facing stress and crises.
Becoming lastingly happier it’s up to us, in part, and requires making some permanent changes, commitment and effort every day of your life. It takes work and time, but it may be the most rewarding work you’ll ever do.
Keep smiling! You CAN be happy!
It’s always fun to share so let’s head over to: