Okay, so maybe I don’t have any secrets to reveal, but you have to admit that, for a second there, you were REALLY excited when you read that title. Through the ages, many experts have tried to dissect and explain the psychology of happiness. What makes that almost impossible is the fact that each of us ‘get happy’ for different reasons. I practice what I call Donna’s Delightful Doctrine. (Okay, you caught me. I just made that up. But it sounds pretty fun, so I’m going with it.) Here are my 5 secrets to living a happy life.
Enjoy the one you’re with – Let’s face it, a big part of our happiness comes from the people around us. We feel happy when we’re loved and supported, and our happiness only grows when we express our love and support for others. Even though you might have been hurt in the past, don’t let that keep you from opening your heart. Seek out those people who are deserving of your time and attention, and cherish them. And when it comes to marriage, find someone worthy of your love and hang on tight.
Accept what you have – Most of the happy people I know feel blessed with the things they’ve acquired. They strive toward realistic goals. Unhappy people always seem to be hankering after something that’s completely out of their reach. I’m not saying you shouldn’t dream big; ambition is healthy. I’m just saying you shouldn’t compare yourself with anyone else. Enjoy your own achievements and successes.
Think positively – I have read that it takes more energy to frown than it does to laugh. It probably sounds silly and simplistic for me to tell you to adopt a glass-half-full attitude, but science has shown that happy people are optimistic people. Smile. Say something nice. Think something nice. Positive thinking is a natural defense mechanism against depression.
Enjoy what you do – Happy people do what they love and love what they do. For the last 25 years, I have had the pleasure of writing upbeat, happily-ever-after romance novels. We have to spend a huge chuck of our lives working for a living. The happiest and healthiest people find work that allows them to do something they enjoy.
Focus on today – Don’t dwell on mistakes or failures of the past, and don’t spend too much time fantasizing about tomorrow. Be fully present. Right here. Right now. Suck every drop of life out of this very moment by finding the purpose and meaning in…well, this very moment.
In the end, your level of happiness may come down to how you define that nebulous term. But I am absolutely ecstatic that I have a Pollyanna personality, and I suggest you do all that you can to adopt one for yourself. Choosing happiness is the way to go. You don’t have to take my word for it. Studies have shown that being happy will add more life to your years and more years to your life.
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About Prayer of Quiet
Do you wish you could escape the chaos of the world? The Prayer of Quiet is a spiritual practice that can be used every single day to help you do just that. Communing with God in utter stillness is a method of devotion that is deeply rooted in the Christian tradition and has life-changing potential.
Prayer of Quiet is a short, simple instruction book offered as a means to open our eyes and our hearts so we might become more aware of God. It might be time to stop talking and start listening.
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Donna Fasano is a USA Today Bestselling Author whose books have sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide. Learn more about her by visiting her blog, and you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Prayer of Quiet is her first work of non-fiction.