In Pursuit of Happiness
Posted 2007-07-13 3:00 AM (#93252)
Subject: In Pursuit of Happiness

Location: London

The following comes from this week's Sport magazine. If you're not into sports and the media, I suggest you look away now.


In Pursuit of Happiness by Dr Robert Holden

1. Happiness is...

Take some time to reflect on what your own personal definition of happiness is. Look back on your life so far and think about the people who you consider to have taught you the most about happiness. What exactly did they teach you? The clearer you can be about what true happiness means for you, the happier you will be in the long term.

2. Get to the Heart of the Matter

When life becomes difficult, focus on what is important to you. Remember what is important in your life, and give that your best attention.  Focus your energy on what is working in your life, rather than on the things you find difficult. Try to find a balance - recognise that bad things have happened but be sure to concentrate on the positives in your life.

3. Appreciate Your Lot

Gratitude is the shortest short cut to happiness - it transforms your mood and can change your life. So get a pen and paper, find a place where you won't be disturbed and record the relationships, people, experiences, places, books, songs, art and moments in your life for which you are truly grateful. The more you practise gratitude, the more you will find to be grateful for.

4. Choose Life

You can choose your mood. People may choose to commit acts of terror, for example, but we can always choose our response - we may feel fear, but we can still choose to be positive. It's natural to have emotions such as fear and doubt, but our job is to keep living Life - it's what people admire about the British, after all.

5. Share, Don't Scare

Happiness is partly about handling difficult situations well. If you are nervous about what is going on around you, then talk about it. Whenever you have any fear, the best way of dealing with it is to share it with those closest to you. If you share your fears, they tend to go away; if you keep them private, however, they tend to build up.

6. Pause For Thought

We live in a manic society, one which I call  'the daily unconsciousness'. We get up, go to work, the time flies by and we don't even remember what we did - all we do know is that we're exhausted. Hit the pause button and give yourself some 'me time' every day. Meditate, have a cuppa or go for a walk - either way, just take some time out. The better you treat yourself, the better life will treat you.

7. Now or Never?

We have to learn to let go of the past and live in the present.  It is never too late to be happy, and never too late to enjoy the moment. Yesterday might have been bloody awful, but that doesn't mean that today has to be.  If you don't let go of your past, you will be taught in a perennial cycle of bleakness.  only when you let go can you truly be 'happy' now.

8. Start a New Trend

This week, perform random acts of kindness. Do the opposite to terrorism and spread kindness throughout the city. This could mean giving up your seat to someone in greater need on the Tube, sharing your brolly with a fellow passenger at the bus stop or even just lending a poorly Sport scribe the money to buy a hearty meal and a few beverages. It will make you happy, honest.

9. Flip the Frown

Decide to smile a bit more and you will find more things to smile about - I call it the unreasonable smile. Smile for no reason, and just be friendly. You day goes the way the corners of your mouth turn, so if you can smile there's a good chance that your attitude will improve your day. People may think you're odd but, if it makes you happy, do it.

10. Relationship Intelligence

We know that relationships are at the heart of our happiness, both in life and at work. But, because of our busy lives, our most important relationships rarely receive the most of our energy or attention. Take this test. First, ask yourself who you could be spending more time with. Second, who could you be listening to more? Third, who could you be acknowledging more? Answer these and act.

11. Beat the Blocks

One of the biggest blocks to happiness is that we are waiting to be happy - we want life to get better, but that doesn't happen until we choose to be happy. Happiness is a way of travelling, not a destination. it's a state of mind, so your goal toady is to choose to be happy for no good reason. Just be happy, and watch how this choice affects the rest of your day.

Edited by Vector8 2007-07-13 3:17 AM
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