This time of year many people think about making a New Year’s Resolution. Maybe you’d like to be happier?
Being happy seems like such a simple concept and yet, very few people are truly happy. My father, Mickey, reminded me of this on many occasions.
In one of the letters, he wrote, “As individuals, we want to be happier than other people. This is difficult since we believe them to be happier than they really are.” Tweet This
Here are 5 Cool Ideas for being happier.
1. Accepting yourself can help you be happy.
My friend, Dr. Steve Fabick, is a psychologist. He says that being self-conscious can spoil almost any occasion. A man, for example, may not enjoy a fast dance with a woman because he can’t stop thinking about how he looks. Many women are unable to relax if they are under-dressed (or over-dressed) for a dinner party.
The key to accepting yourself is to be comfortable in any given situation without being held hostage by the need for self-improvement.
2. Make each day a “perfect” day.
List the things that make you happy. Be sure to include work and not just fun stuff. Your ultimate goal is to make sure that the activities on your list occur daily. When you can systematize these activities, every day will be a perfect day.
3. Helping others helps you.
Grievance counselors say that helping others is a terrific way to be happier. Create a tandem act of kindness. Distract yourself from problems by helping someone else.
I’ve made an assortment of long-term commitments to helping others including involvement with the Optimists, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and Rotary, the largest professional service organization in the world.
4. Use the “reversal” to get a grip.
Wrestling fans know about a move called “the reversal.” It’s what happens when the victim on the bottom ends up being the victor on the top.
If you blame someone else for your unhappiness, ask yourself, “How long am I willing to be unhappy?” Reversing the blame will gently force you to realize that you are responsible for your happiness.
5. Happiness is a process, not a place.
I once facilitated a meeting for a company whose management preached the famous business model “management-by-objective” (MBO), as popularized by Peter Drucker. As I spent time with the employees, it became clear that the rank-and-file were disenchanted with the MBO process.
One employee actually told me, “This management-by-objective thing must not be working. This is the fifth year that we’re doing it!”
Management-by-objective is a process, not a place. The same is true for happiness. A happy life requires dedication, patience, acceptance, and in some cases, planning.
More regarding my father’s letters
I read my Dad’s letters in the audiobook, Dear Michael Angelo – A Father’s Life Letters to His Son, to you and your family.
You’ll relate if you ever had a dad.
You’ll be inspired to create a similar legacy for your family by writing letters to your children, blogging or even recording your stories in audio or video format.