You and your family gather under the setting sun at the shore of your most cherished spot. The kids play by your side as you and your spouse sit and read, bodies slowly baking in the rays.
Happiness, at least for for me.
Your idea of happiness might be the opposite — a day of hiking along the ridge paths of an Appalachian mountain or an afternoon on the sidelines of a NY Giants game.
Happiness is relative: what makes YOU content won’t necessarily draw the next guy’s smile.
Does Money Mean Happy?
The question everyone’s asked since the Age of the Plesiosaur (a rough estimate, of course), is “Does money bring happiness?”
The answer: you choose.
Choose to let money measure your smile, and risk a life spent in pursuit of dollars you might never hold. Are you willing to spend your life chasing dreams that may never come true? Allowing memories and wonder to pass without notice?
Make your choice. Turn around. It’s a decade later and your children are grown. Time you intended to spend focusing on your health soared by you with zero improvement. Your most prominent memories see you struggling and scraping to “make it.” You remember long nights at work. You remember drive-thru dinners and very little else.
You chose Rich.
You didn’t choose Happy.
Change your mind. Change your path. Change your life.
How can you choose happy — with so many bills to pay, a boss who screams at you daily, and a spouse who nags you to do things you don’t have time for?
No matter what else is on your plate, you can make the decision to be happy, to accept where you are, and to work to get to where you want to be.
Choosing Happy doesn’t mean you’re choosing acceptance without working for the prize. You’ll choose Happy, but work smart towards Rich. Will it happen? Maybe, and maybe not — but you’ll be happy regardless and use your precious time on Earth a lot better because of it.
How to Make Happy a Priority
1. Make your commitment, and stick to it.
2. Every morning, wake up and renew your vow to find a little (or a lot) of Happy in everything. This is key; when you rise on this note, it sets your mind for the day.
3. When you feel the negative pull of friends or family, remind yourself of your goal and nudge them to your side. Program your brain for an automatic response that kicks you into positivity before the negativity can pull you down.
4. Remind yourself each night before you sleep of the Happy you found that day — and the Happy you’re eager to find tomorrow.
5. Don’t let go of your dream. If you want to be rich, be smart about your goals and work toward them with savvy. Work when it’s time to work. Relax when your body needs it. But, most importantly, nurture those around you.
6. Avoid negative news and gossip. Change the channel or turn it off. You want to feed your new Happy. Become a Happy junkie when you’re online or watching TV.
7. Nourish your body with healthy foods. What you power your body with affects how you think and feel. When you feed yourself artificial chemicals and harmful sugars, you alter your body’s natural chemistry and hormone balance. That alters your perception. Happy begs for healthful nourishment.
8. Give your body the movement it craves. We weren’t built to be sedentary, but today’s society isn’t geared toward natural movement like we were in the past. This means we must dig up our own. Make your body move: exercise equals Happy.
9. Sleep when tired. So many nights, we push ourselves to stay up later than we should. Sleep deprivation shifts our vision toward the negative. Without proper sleep, Happy goes right out the window. Then where will you be?
Choosing Happy over Rich can be difficult, but these steps can make it a lot easier.
How have you made Happy a priority in your life?