12 STEPS TO INNER HAPPINESS

You may have noticed that happiness can be contagious when you’re around happy people. They seem to enjoy life, know how to have fun and experience joy, meaning and purpose in their lives.  Happy people not only appear to know how to be happy but they have the ability to make other people happy also.

This is because their happiness comes from within.

When you take off your blindfold and finally realise that true happiness can be found within, you too can become a much happier person, achieving success of your own making.  This may be a major light bulb moment for you, or a reality check, that the source of happiness and your feelings around happiness can be found at your very own doorstep.

HOW TO BE HAPPY…

Before we get into the ways to inner happiness, it may be wise, if you are continually unhappy, to ask yourself, whether you perhaps have a fear of happiness. Such a fear is fairly common and is known as cherophobia.

What is Cherophobia?

Cherophobia Definition — “A phobia where a person feels afraid of being happy or having fun as it may cause something bad to happen”.

There are those who have an irrational aversion to happiness and suffer from what is referred to as “cherophobia, a fear of being happy. These people seem to avoid, at all cost, participating in anything that might be a fun activity with happy people as it makes them feel anxious and fearful.

There may be many different reasons why cherophobia occurs in some people.  Those who suffer from this fear of happiness may have built up a defence system as a protective barrier against anything that might cause past events, related to happy emotions, to resurface. However, if anyone feels they may identify in any way with these feelings… a fear of happiness or being with happy people, they should seek some professional advice or speak with a counsellor or their family doctor for guidance about the matter.

12 STEPS TO INNER HAPPINESS

We often equate success with happiness and think that only successful people are happier than most. We delude ourselves if we think this to be true. We may conclude that rich people seem to have more rights to happiness than others and that happiness will only come to those who are self-made millionaires.

So, what exactly is it that happy people do to stay happy? 

Here are some tips for being genuinely happy…

1          SET GOALS

Happy People Set Purposeful Goals

Whilst financial success does not guarantee happiness, it is also true that financial struggle can be an inhibiter of inner happiness.

Happiness can simply be the by-product of many years of toil and hardship.  However, happiness may have been reached much earlier if certain guidelines had been followed and specific goals had strategically been drawn up to monitor progress and to avoid any pitfalls that may have occurred along the way.

Goals create purpose. They provide guidelines and structure that permit monitoring of progress toward a specific future outcome.  Goals set the parameters around a specific target, that can be measured, balanced and quantified.

Success, in the sense of fulfilling cherished dreams can provide the basis to a much happier life. Such success doesn’t always happen overnight. Nevertheless, having a plan and setting goals for the future can instil purpose and produce rewards along the way as incentives, as one strives to achieve goals that could well lead to happiness within.

You may have heard this many times before, but it’s true, successful people always focus on the end goal, setting structure, allowing for any adjustments along the way. But it is their commitment to the goal that gives them the energy, willpower, and ability to stay the course.  Inner strength and focus come from your willpower, your inner voice that wills you on to succeed and achieve happiness over everything else.  

Having your eyes firmly focused on the end goal, front and center of your mind every day, is what will drive you forward, with the ability to create your dreams and give you the inner happiness you are looking for.

You need to lay down clear ground rules about how you are going to achieve your dream of finding true happiness.

If your aim is to be a much happier person, one goal might be to get to know happy people and make new friends. Or your goal might be losing weight, getting fit, finishing your uni course.  Or perhaps your ultimate goal is to start your own business.  Whatever it might be, being genuinely happy will take effort, persistence and constantly working towards your goal each and every day.

You need to set achievable goals that you know are realistic and that will produce the true happiness that you are looking for.  Write down your goals and work out a time frame for achieving those goals. Have small rewards or incentives along the way for crucial achievements.  Use a diary or notebook to record your milestones along the way.

Regularly write down happy thoughts or happy words of encouragement for yourself.  Remember that making other people happy is a great way to experience happiness within yourself.  Think of things to make people happy, demonstrate happy emotions to others, and genuinely try to be a much happier person.

2 VISUALISE YOUR DREAMS

Happy People Visualise their Dreams

Many successful and happy people spend time regularly visualising their dreams for the future. This creates more self-motivation. Their imaginative happy thoughts spur them on to achieve their goals and realise their dreams.

Create mental pictures in your mind and don’t limit yourself.  Use your visualisations to create mental pictures.  Imagine the impossible… this is your chance to create big dreams to become happier along the way to success.

Visualise what your path to happiness might look like.  Cut out pictures and place them on your vision board.  When you focus on your vision board daily, weekly or monthly, you will soon be able to see your dream being fulfilled.  If it’s front of mind every day, happy things will come your way.  If you are keeping your mind happy with positive, self-praising happy emotions and thoughts, many more opportunities will present themselves to you.  This is because you are focused on the end result and not being distracted in any way by moments of diversion.  Visualisation of the end goal every day helps you to identify any pitfalls more easily, the everyday distractions and blocking mechanisms that inhibit your focus.

By continually focusing on your path to happiness, you have the power to create what may now seem impossible.  When you realise that commitment is crucial to leading you forward to that one big happy life you’re creating for yourself, your inner happiness is inevitable.  Visualise your future self and how your future might look.  Happiness comes from within, so throw off the negative thought processes.  Be committed and change to a positive mindset.  This is where the road to genuine happiness begins.

3          STEP OUT FROM THE COMFORT ZONE

Happy people step out of their comfort zone

Many people balk at the thought of change, because they are safely ensconced in very familiar surroundings and changing in any way would greatly upset the status quo.  However, setting goals makes change inevitable.  Setting definite goals allows the once solid goal posts to be moved to a far better position.  This allows for new creative activities to develop and flourish, bringing new joy, meaning, happiness and the building of new dreams

Shifting from your comfort zone takes courage, determination, planning, goal setting and commitment to change.  However, successful people discover what’s possible in their lives when they take that giant leap of faith and shift the goal posts of their comfort zone.  Happy things happen to those who dare to dream.  Creating your own dream is one of the things that make people happy.

Settings goals for change leads to a happier person.  Opportunities are created when you shift from the old ways of doing things, that stunted growth.   Shifting from your cosy comfort zone, whilst scary, will suddenly make possible a world of happiness where dreams become possible.  But it means moving out of your comfort zone.

4          DEVELOP STRATEGIES

Happy People Create Strategies

Shifting from your comfort zone means setting clear, constructive goals for the future. It means writing down your plans for success, exactly how you are going to achieve your dreams and what your time frame will be. You must monitor your progress on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis to ascertain how long your goals will realistically take to achieve.

By setting out clear strategies that are manageable and achievable and allowing for changes, true happiness will not elude you.  You need to be clearly defining how you are going to manage any setbacks, challenges or frustrations so that you will stay motivated and focused to stay the course.

You cannot change others, but you surely can change yourself.  You need to monitor your feelings around mood, respect, your values, your spoken words, the way your think and those you mix with.  Ask yourself how you see the world around you?… the people you mix with, your work situation, what occupies your mind, what do you take for granted, how many people follow your lead, are others respectful to you, do you have respect for others?  Are you in the happiest place on earth?… if not, why not?

5          SET BOUNDARIES

Happy People Set Boundaries

Setting clear boundaries around how you think, what are your core values, is vital for change.  How is your self-esteem, and do you say what you mean and mean what you say?  Happiness will elude you if you are not true to your values and yourself. We can control what we think and who we mix with.  Write down clear strategies and boundaries around the things that need to change and be specific about how you are going to succeed.

Thinking happy thoughts, speaking happy words, need to become the norm.  You need to surround yourself with genuinely happy people who express real joy, meaning and gratitude in their lives.  These will be the strategic flow-on effects when you set strict boundaries for achieving true happiness for yourself.

6          MOTIVATION

Happy People are Motivated

In your quest to find happiness, motivation is often a key contributor to success. You need strategies around how you are going to stay motivated and keep yourself on course.

Happy people generally know what it takes to recharge their batteries. They seem to know how to create happiness by spoiling themselves every now and then.  They not only know how to recharge their batteries to keep their motivation level up, but regularly reward themselves for any achievements made.  Happy people spoil themselves and others by booking a regular camping trip to their favourite spots or taking a well-deserved massage… or just having an enjoyable weekend away. These are the things that make people happy while they are on the way to fulfilling the dreams.  Happier people create fun activities around how to reward themselves or pamper themselves.

So, what’s it going to take you to keep yourself motivated to reach that one big happy life you are craving?  A good way to keep you focused each day is to collect “happiness within” quotes for keeping you motivated.  This feeds your mind with positivity while creating attractive incentives.  The end result will be that you too will be a much happier person. .

7 COMMITMENT

Happy People are Committed

Achieving goals requires commitment. The first step to commitment is to write down why you want to achieve those goals.  The road to happiness will take both effort and will power.  Success doesn’t usually happen overnight. It takes hard work, staying the course and committing yourself to the objective.

So often, folks get so bogged down with the day-to-day business of work, family or other demanding situations, that they fail to step back and take a closer look at where they are headed. Stress or anxiety can easily take hold of them. They are working so hard that happiness is eluding them.  

However, when you make a commitment to yourself, you will be able to keep on track for true happiness.  Successful people are not always the happiest people in the world, but they generally know what’s required to continually invest in their own personal happiness.

7 HAVE GOOD FRIENDS

Happy People have Good Friends

A strong supportive family and good social relationships are more likely to increase your longevity as well as improve your levels of happiness.  Good friends enrich your happiness. People who have a network of good friends are much happier.

Choose your friends wisely because they can influence you. Seek out supportive, positive friends that you know will strengthen each other’s happiness, by encouraging each other.

The benefits of having good, happy people as your friends not only enriches your life, but also improves your overall health and wellbeing, as it reduces your stress levels.  Having supportive friendships generally make you happier than those without good socially connected friendships.

Therefore, it’s important to build social relationships with several happy people, doing happy things together, laughing and having fun.  This is what builds strong lifetime friendships.  Engaging in strong social networks with local clubs and sporting activities is where lots of happy people gather and builds happier connective groups that can support each other.  When times get tough it’s important to have good friends around you. This is when these strong connected friendships are important as they sustain happiness, knowing that there are others out there willing to assist in times of difficulty.

Doing things together is what makes people happy. It not only keeps your mind sharp but strengthens your cognitive ability, while it decreases feelings of loneliness.  Staying connected with good friends is a great strategy for being a much happier person.  

Mixing with happy people who make you laugh and speaking happy words of encouragement is a great way to experience greater happiness.

8 OVERCOME SELF-DOUBT

Happy people overcome their self-doubts and unlearn self-limiting beliefs.

Self-doubt is a huge “stopper” in people’s lives as it cripples their confidence, their ability to get motivated and stay focused, when trying to be in a much happier place than they are now.  Learn to believe in yourself. Create an optimistic mindset where you can overcome your inner self-doubt. Change from having automatic pessimistic, negative thoughts to being a habitual optimist.

REMOVE ROADBLOCKS

Roadblocks congest and obstruct your vision and your ability to move forward and fulfil your aspirations and dreams of success and happiness.  When you allow the negative invasion of doubt to take a strong grip on your thoughts, it cripples any notions of achieving what seems the impossible.  Your doubting inner voice holds you back from achieving what is in fact possible.  If you are frequently being bogged down with negative thoughts, positive affirmations can override your subconscious patterns of behaviour.

You need to talk to your inner voice, that doubting voice that lacks confidence… the voice within your head that holds you back for fear of things perhaps going wrong.

The best strategy is to CHANGE EVERY NEGATIVE THOUGHT TO A POSITIVE…

Fill your mind every day with happy thoughts and happy emotions and say out loud “I am going to be happier today than yesterday”.  

Strive to make someone happy each day by using positive affirmations so that they too can experience joy, meaning and happiness in their lives.  There is an inner power in using happy words of positive affirmation.  It’s a daily reminder that will improve your mental attitude and provide encouragement from within.  

Affirming yourself helps you realise the positive mindset benefits to your happiness, health and wellbeing.  Practice positive phrases every day and challenge any self-doubting thoughts as soon as they arrive. Regularly using positive affirmation not only improves self-esteem but encourages motivation.

“When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things.”—Joe Namath

Believe in yourself.  Shift your mindset and reward yourself with praise and acknowledgement of your self-worth.  This strengthens your self-worth, building a much happier state of mind.  Claiming self-worth affirmations everyday improves health and wellbeing.  It not only lowers your stress levels but creates more energy for increased motivation and commitment for change and opens up the door to a much happier life.  True happiness is worth fighting for, as what was once the impossible now becomes possible…

9 BE IN CONTROL OF YOUR LIFE

Happy People are in Control

Taking control of your life means being responsible for your thought processes.  You will find happiness within yourself when you take complete control of your life, by taking responsibility for your choices and actions.

Choose your friends wisely, seek to take control of all aspects of your life.  Dreams are realised by encouraging others with happy words and happy thoughts.  Avoid, at all cost, rumourmongering because that can degenerate into obsessive, negative conversation. Such conversation, that denegrates others, can destroy relationships.  Look beyond yourself, showing gratitude to others… being thankful and speaking meaningful, happy words of appreciation that show that you recognise others’ assistance.

10 CAPTURE THE POWER OF FOCUS

Happy People Focus

The power of focus is in constantly reminding yourself of your intentions and focusing on the goal of being a happier person.  

Create a vision board and write down your goals. Write down affirmations such as… I want to be a happy person… I am going to only say encouraging happy words… I am going to think happy thoughts… I am going to strive to make other people happy… I am going to be a much happier person to be around.  You should read your vision board every day to stay focused.  Focusing will lead to you being the person you want to be.

When you set definite goals, you start the process of capturing the power of focus. This is where you leave all the distractions behind.  On your quest for true happiness, setting intentions is often the first step to staying focused.  This may mean eliminating time-wasting distraction that would jeopardise your happiness.

It’s hard sometimes to focus when the world around you would hamper your progress. Achieving happiness will no doubt take effort and old habits could creep back in.  Focusing on your goal may mean changing your behaviour, seeking out new friends, or going on a diet and exercising more.

Live a purposeful life, full of intention, without self-limiting beliefs, to empower yourself, increase your feeling of self-worth and ultimately to lead to inner happiness.  Being a happier person will also lead to you being influential in other people’s lives and make them much happier also.

11 EMPHASISE THE POSITIVE

Happy People Always Emphasise the Positive

To reach your goals, you need to constantly remind yourself why you have set your goals.

Change any negative thought process to a new positive belief system.  Positive people don’t listen to their self-limiting thought processes.  Positive, happy people emphasise the positives and eliminate any negatives. Their mindset is focused on positive outcomes and not on limiting beliefs that may hold them back in any way from achieving their goals and dreams. Happy people don’t focus on inner doubts or negative frameworks, but fill their minds with happy thoughts, seeking out other happy people they want to be around and learn from.

Our innate personalities and genetic traits are set from birth from our parents. But our environment also plays an important role in our level of happiness and how we behave.  Our attitude towards other people often tends to develop according to how we ourselves were treated by others, or as we watched friends, neighbours, teachers, our parents.  You may naturally be a fairly jovial person, but your environment plays a big part in how you perceive yourself in the world in which you live.  Your environment also plays an important role in your immediate happiness and your future happiness.

12 HAPPINESS IS A MINDSET

Happy People have a Positive State of Mind

Some people seem naturally to know how to be happy.  They have a genuinely happier outlook on life, to make them happier than others. They think happy thoughts, they speak happy words of affirmation to their friends and more importantly, to themselves.

It is, for them, perhaps a natural way of thinking, but for others it’s a definite decision and thought process that needs to be developed. You can easily change your thinking, despite hardships, setbacks, unfortunate circumstances or the lack of friends or family or even the lack of money, education or opportunities.  We cannot blame the past for how things are in the present. The old saying “we have the future in the palm our our hands” is true.  We shape our own destiny.  Happy thoughts develop happy emotions which build happier people.

Happiness is a Choice

The happiest place on earth could well be where you are, curled up by the fireplace, reading a good book, or perhaps out with friends or family enjoying each other’s company.  It may be while playing cricket, or with lots of other happy people at the beach or doing other happy things that you enjoy.

We all desire happiness and often we cannot get enough of it. However, despite our circumstances, happiness is a choice. You can choose to be happy or you can choose not to be happy. The choice is in your hands.

So don’t worry, be happy!

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