The Happiness Connection  

Happiness is a POV

When I tell people I specialize in helping the world to be happier, I get a wide variety of reactions.

For the most part, they fall into two camps: one that believes my work is important, and the other that thinks my vision is unachievable.

All lives experience light and shadow; no one can live in perpetual sunshine. For some reason, talking about being happier conjures visions of Cinderella skipping and singing among the forest animals.

In the minds of many, a happy life seems to equate with being free from worry and difficult times.

In truth, you can go through problems, challenges, and deep darkness and still be happy. You do not have to live in a fairytale, or have lots of money to feel great about your life.

Regardless of whether you are happy, or miserable, you will still have hills to climb, difficult people to deal with, and deep holes to navigate around. 

Happy people recognize the benefits of climbing the hills, view challenging people as an opportunity to improve their people skills, and are willing to attempt to jump over deep holes, knowing they can always climb out of them if they fall in.

It isn’t what happens to you in your life that makes you happy, or unhappy, it is how you react to those things. 

Happiness involves making a choice to be happy, and then taking small steps to achieve that goal. 

If you are the impatient sort, you might think by taking huge strides, you can reach a state of happiness quicker.

Giant leaps have a place in your travels through life, but if that is all you take, you will soon exhaust yourself.

Small steps can get you farther in the long run. 

Start by choosing one small action to add into your life to boost your happiness. Concentrate on turning this action into a habit, as that is the secret to lasting change.

If you don’t know where to start, try changing the way you look at life’s events. Attempt to view challenges from a more positive perspective. 

When I was caught in the rain the other day, I didn’t bemoan the fact that I was soaking wet. I reminded myself that it could be worse; it could be snowing.

When I lost my car keys, I chose to be thankful that I had a car to lose the keys to, and was grateful that I had a spare set. 

These may be small shifts in thinking, but they will build into a major change if practised consistently. 

Does that mean I am always positive, and cheerful?

Far from it. I slide backward from time to time, just like everyone else, but sinking into negativity happens less often the more I practise maintaining a positive perspective.

When a shadow falls across your path, try to see a purpose for the darkness.

It might be an opportunity to learn something new about yourself, or a chance to take a break from wearing sunglasses. If you can find a positive reason for the challenge you are facing, you will feel better about the experience. 

Your life will have ups and downs, whether you choose to be happy or not. It isn’t a change in your circumstances that make you happy; it’s a change in your perspective of the circumstances.

More The Happiness Connection articles

About the Author

Reen Rose is an experienced, informative, and engaging speaker, author, and educator. She has worked for over three decades in the world of education, teaching children and adults in Canada and England.

Research shows that happy people are better leaders, more successful, and healthier than their unhappy counterparts, and yet so many people still believe that happiness is a result of their circumstances.

Happiness is a choice. Reen’s presentations and workshops are designed to help you become robustly happy. This is her term for happiness that can withstand challenge and change.

Reen blends research-based expertise, storytelling, humour, and practical strategies to both inform and inspire. She is a Myers Briggs certified practitioner, a Microsoft Office certified trainer and a qualified and experienced teacher.

Email Reen at [email protected]

Check out her websites at www.ReenRose.com, or www.ModellingHappiness.com

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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