Stop putting your happiness on hold
In today’s world many of us struggle to be happy now – we deal with the increasing stress at the workplace, we are dissatisfied with our current life situation or we find ourselves lacking sense of life.
At the same time, we all want to believe that we will be happy at some point in our lives. Many people tell themselves “I’ll be happy when I will finally lose 10 pounds” or “I will be satisfied when I get my promotion”. However, this is a trap called conditional happiness. It puts the perfect life from our dreams and visions on hold. This pattern of thinking traps us in the “Someday Isle” – someday I will ask my boss for a raise, someday I will start my own business and so on. This way, happiness is connected to an event or change of circumstances in the future that may or may not happen.
Furthermore, in the event of accomplishing a goal, it is a usual that we fail to appreciate the moment and instead we rush to race for new goals. The truth is – it’s a vicious circle which results in never-ending chase for happiness.
Change your mind-set and practice appreciation
What if you could be happy now, with your life as it is? When you look in the future with the hope that it will bring some source of happiness, you automatically delay yourself from being happy now. On the other hand, it is unadvisable to give up on achieving your long-term goals – creating an inspiring vision of what you want to accomplish in life is important to your overall sense of purpose. The idea is to find the right balance and practice appreciation for all of your blessings whilst doing something every day that your future self will thank you for.
3 tips for being happy now
1. Find gratitude
Individuals who regularly practice appreciation through gratitude often have increased life satisfaction. Martha Washington said, “The greatest part of our happiness depends on our dispositions, not our circumstances.” Make a list of the good things in your life at the current moment. Practice appreciation for the simple things such as the fact that you are not one of the 795 million people suffering from hunger. Be thankful for your health, your job or understand the gift of your family and you will see a noticeable rise in your happiness.
It is worthy to keep a ‘Gratitude Journal’ where every day you can note down things you are grateful for. With time, your mind will shift to recognise positive things, making you happier, regardless of your current situation.
2. Appreciate the little moments
It is important to cherish the small moments of happiness in our lives. If you can understand how to be happy with the small things, your mind-set will adjust and you won’t require enormous changes in your life to be happy now.
It might be a truism but life is short and everything changes. Next time when you hear the laughter of your kids, buy a new pair of shoes or a drink a great coffee in the morning, acknowledge the fact that it will not last forever and enjoy the moment.
3. Accept yourself
Another trap we can fall into is constantly exaggerating our flaws and underappreciating our virtues. In today’s world, media create and spread false image of the ‘perfect man or woman’ which makes us focus on the gap between our current situation and that desired image. However, being happy with your career doesn’t require you to earn $1,000,000 annually and having a good body doesn’t require six pack or 90-60-90 figure. It requires you to practice appreciation of the things you already have.
If you stop focusing on the things you don’t have and practice appreciation for what you already possess, you will be significantly happier. No one is perfect and simply shifting how we perceive ourselves can be sufficient in making you happy now.
Start appreciating and be happy now
The trick to happiness is not having more or being more – it is about changing your perception and being able to practice appreciation. Delaying happiness and hoping that it will come someday as a result of something keeps us away from being happy now. If you catch yourself falling into the conditional happiness trap, pause for a moment and realise that tomorrow nothing will change without your action. Then, by all means keep working towards your goals but also recognize, embrace and practice appreciation by using gratitude, enjoying the moment and accepting yourself to finally be happy now.
Do you think appreciation is the key to happiness in the current moment? Let me know in the comments!