The Art of Choosing Happiness

Happiness has nothing to do with what is going on around us; it is literally a choice we individually make, moment to moment.

It’s great to hold outside circumstances responsible for our level of happiness – how much money is in the bank, whether the boss is happy, whether we have the right car – but the truth is, you are the only one who can decide to be happy or unhappy in any situation.

Happiness is literally a choice. YOUR choice.

Regardless of what anyone has told you about what it takes to be happy, no matter what you have decided you must have in order to be happy, if you would like to have joy in your life, if you would like to live every day as a celebration, it IS possible and you can start now.

Here are three tips on how to choose the happiness that you desire:

  • Practice

A great place to start is to practice being happy, even if it’s just for 10 seconds at a time. You can choose it again as many times over as you like. Let’s say you have 10 seconds to live the rest of your life and in that final 10 seconds, you’d like to be truly happy. Choose it! Choose happy. That life time is over. You have another 10 seconds to live the rest of your life. What do you choose? Happy? You certainly can. Every 10 seconds, if you’d like, you can choose to be happy. If you stop being happy and you notice, choose again. “Wait! Somewhere my happy got lost. This is a new 10 seconds. In this 10 seconds… I choose happy!” It really is that simple.

  • Don’t Take on Other People’s Stuff

So much of what gets in the way of our happiness is other people’s stuff. Our co-workers are unhappy. Our family members are unhappy. Our friends are unhappy. The other drivers on the road are unhappy. And we decide, ‘Oh! I should be unhappy too.”

Are you willing to be as different as you truly are? Are you willing to be happy even if no one around you is?

Here’s a great tool you can use. It’s called, ‘Who does this belong too?’ The thing is, you are like a gigantic radio picking up on everyone and everything around you and guess what? That includes a lot of unhappiness. So, the next time you feel unhappy, ask, ‘Who does this belong to?’ If you feel lighter when you ask, you’re not the unhappy one. You are just picking up on others. Let that unhappiness go! Choose the happiness that is available.

  • Start Every Day by Asking Questions

You know that feeling you sometimes have when you’re first waking up in the morning? When you realize that you are going from sleep to awake and all of the heaviness that you felt yesterday is still there? It can feel like the south end of a north bound elephant is sitting on your head and you just want to go back to sleep – hoping it will go away.

The next time you notice this, rather than spiraling down into those all-too-familiar feelings, ask a question. Asking questions can empower you to change anything.

Here are some questions you can ask:

  • What can I be or do different today to change this?
  • How does it get any better than this?
  • Universe, will you please show me something beautiful today?
  • What else is possible here that I’ve never considered?

The art of happiness is about asking questions. When you ask a question, even a simple one such as, “What else is possible here that I’ve never considered?” you open the door to new possibilities opening up that you couldn’t see before.

Happiness is just a choice. One you can make now. Be willing to choose it, every 10 seconds. It takes practice. Recognize that just because much of the world chooses to be unhappy doesn’t mean you have to too. Be willing to be different and in most places, happy is different. Never underestimate the power of asking questions. Questions can change anything. What would it take to live every day as a celebration? Don’t be afraid to ask that question. You might just find your life starts getting better!

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