March 2017 – Practicing Happiness

How often do you do the things that make you truly happy? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? Rarely? Never? While happiness may be the intention behind much of what we each set out to do daily in our lives, it can often still feel delayed or chronically pushed to the back burner. This is because for many of us, we only view happiness as a result of achieving something…instead of simply allowing happiness itself, to be our main goal!

So what if this Spring you decided you wanted to change this? To suddenly do more of what makes you truly happy each & every day? And do those things simply because they bring you joy? Not because you’ll achieve something first & then hope some happiness comes along with it.

Well, if you’re ready to experience more happiness & want to start now, here are a few steps to help you begin!

  1. First, Choose Happiness. The first thing to realize is that happiness is a choice. No matter what our current circumstances are, we can still choose happiness for ourselves because in every moment of our existence, we have an infinity of choices! Perhaps we’re in a place presently though, where happiness isn’t what we’re wanting to choose. Maybe we simply don’t want to feel &/or experience it at present. This is okay. Truly! Sometimes it might even be necessary as we may need to grieve a loss first or be with our anger or another emotion until it passes. Even so, when we’re good & ready, we must choose happiness for ourselves…if we are to ever have it! We do this by focusing on & saying yes to things large or small that bring us happiness! We also choose happiness by being as present to each moment of our lives as we possibly can; finding in each moment whatever simple joy or amazing thing there may be there! Lastly, the key to continually experiencing happiness from this point on is to keep choosing it for ourselves…each & every new day!
  1. Get Clear About What Makes YOU Happy. Even if we choose to be happy, how can we feel & experience it if we’re not entirely clear about the people, places & things that bring us genuine joy? Therefore, once you decide you’re wanting to feel & experience more happiness in your life, make a complete list. Do this as soon as you’re ready! Take a blank sheet of paper & on it, jot down everything that makes you happy right now; large or small, two things or twenty! Is it a hot cup of coffee every morning? A jog after work? Knitting? Lunch with someone who makes you laugh every day? Journaling before bed? Doing nice things for others? Sipping tea for a 1/2 hour after a long day of work? Writing? Entertaining? Baking? Reading? Dancing? Whatever it is, jot it all down! Then, make sure everything on your list is what truly makes YOU happy. (Not your mother, best friend, husband or boyfriend!)
  1. Practice Happiness…So It Can Grow Within You & Your Life! The more you engage with people, places & things that cause you to feel happiness, the more of it you will have in your day to day life. The more present you become to all of the simple joys found in each moment too, the more you will feel & experience happiness! So just like certain muscles that need to be worked out each day to grow stronger, the practice of cultivating happiness in our lives needs to be worked at. How can you start? Do one thing on your list daily to begin a happiness practice with! Then, perhaps do two or three small items from your list daily. Between all three things, maybe you spend an hour to several hours a day, engaged in a few things that bring you sheer joy! This is practicing happiness. This is how we feed our happiness too…so that eventually, we’re able to experience happiness every day, as part of our normal, natural lives!

Remember too, that life is meant to be enjoyed. We are here to connect, create, laugh, help, feel & experience this world & one another. When we consciously infuse happiness into moments, hours & days of our lives, we not only make life more special for ourselves, we also share & multiply that goodness with all those around us!

May you take from here large or small, whatever’s helpful to you…& where needed, share this message with those you love! Happy March. I wish you a beautiful start to your Spring…& a season ahead, filled with much happiness!