We all want to feel fulfilled and live happier. As far as I’m concerned happiness is the only true barometer of success. So how do we ensure we are as happy as we can be in 2019? Here are 13 distinctions, 13 small adjustments to your daily routine that can make all the difference.
When you get up in the morning or are leaving the house for work – purposefully say to yourself I’m going to look for at least one positive thing today. We get what we focus on.
If you enter a room and want to notice everything that is red in that room you will be searching for the red.
The same thing applies in life.
If you are seeking the negative you will find it, if you seek the positive you will find it too.
A great question to ask ourselves at any time is – what’s the most important thing to focus on right now? Starting the day, think about one thing you would like to achieve.
Let that be at the forefront of your mind. Maybe it is a work-related goal you can progress before you start checking email and are sucked into other people’s urgencies.
Or it might be as simple as getting the grocery shopping done.
This might sound like a glib cliché but a pleasant expression may just boost someone else’s day.
We know life is better for all when smiles, compliments or words of encouragement are exchanged.
I read recently that two people I admire Wayne Dyer and Diane Von Furstenberg both start their days in a similar way. They both endeavour to say thank you.
This might mean sending a thank you letter or email (we know how wonderful it is to receive them) or purposefully acknowledging the efforts of someone else in a meaningful way.
The late Australian novelist Bryce Courtenay said that ‘if you are pleasant and nice you are probably going to be conned, but in the long run it’s a better journey because you are going to win – you will win more friends more character and more joy.’
In challenging situations ask yourself what would be the kind thing to do?
It is all too easy to perpetuate the doom and gloom, be pleasant and understanding but consciously choose to detach and observe rather than participate.
A trend in recent ‘news’ broadcasting is to emphasise the emotional impact of events not just the imparting of facts. I rarely watch TV news for this reason, but I stay informed by reading my news online.
We can have sympathy for the misfortunes of others, but we shouldn’t take on the troubles and worries of others because we have our own issues to deal with.
Most of us are in habit of placing the worst meaning on events and on other people’s behaviour.
None of us has the power to mind read so in 2019 perhaps we could give people the benefit of the doubt a little more and realise that each and every one of us is doing our best.
Forgiveness is the greatest healing tool. So often we drink the poison of anger and resentment in the hope that it will harm the other person, but it really only harms us. I forgive others because I want to feel better, it has nothing to do with them.
From a self-protection perspective I may or may not forget another person’s actions or comments, but life is too short not to forgive. In 2019, what can you forgive, what can you release and let go of, what do you need to forgive yourself for?
We all know nearly 80% of our body is water, so it makes sense that 80% of what we consume should be water or water-rich foods. Many headaches, cravings and tiredness stem from being dehydrated. Coffee and alcohol further dehydrate us.
More water keeps us alert and energised and healthier, key components of happiness in my mind.
For all the high achievers and goal-setters this one is especially for you. When you are clear as to what you want to achieve and you take action towards it, there comes a point when you have to step back and trust that you have done your bit. Obsessing about what might happen just adds to stress and worry.
Think of the farmer planting his crop. He will sow the seeds, remove the weeds and ensure the crop is watered, but the farmer doesn’t do the actual growing, a bigger force looks after that.
At this time of the year, the TV schedules are packed with programmes the aim of which as far as I can see is to make you dissatisfied with your life so you will buy more products (advertised during those programmes.)
In 2019, switch off the TV for even one evening per week. Listen to music, read a book, play a board game, have a conversation. Live your own life rather than watching other people live theirs.
For the hardcore, try an evening where you disconnect from all technology, including your phone! I realised recently that when I’m on holidays I’m disconnected from technology and that is one of the reasons why I feel more relaxed (and happier!)
Checking the phone, sending a tweet or scanning Facebook have become behavioural habits and whilst there is nothing wrong with this unless we switch off our gadgets we will struggle to switch off ourselves.
I’ve got back into the habit of writing in my gratitude journal last thing at night. I jot down three things I’ve been grateful for that day.
It might be something seemingly minor like time spent with a friend, or it could be something more substantial like securing a new piece of business, but it is nice to record what we are grateful for because that day will never come again.
Remember it is no one else’s responsibility to make you happy.
Often we will put acceptance ahead of our happiness or avoidance of fear ahead of our happiness so perhaps in 2019, you can seek ways of ensuring your happiness is not lost in the daily urgencies.
I hope you enjoyed this post and please do share it with your community.
You may also be interested to read my post on how to detach yourself from certain situations and to ensure you don’t miss any of my updates do sign up to my newsletter below.