Habits of Happiness

I often find myself wondering why we are always on the pursuit of happiness- why can’t we just choose to be happy?

According to one study Happiness is: Desire for material things the other is a desire for internal things.

But after trying to figure this out myself I am finding so much more to “Being Happy”

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In a study at the University of Illinois on the 10% of students with the highest scores recorded on a survey of personal happiness. They found that the most salient characteristics shared by students who were very happy and showed the fewest signs of depression were “their strong ties to friends and family and commitment to spending time with them.” (“The New Science of Happiness,” Claudia Wallis, Time Magazine, Jan. 09, 2005).

In one study people were asked on random occasions about their mood. They were found to be happiest with their friends, followed by family members, and least happy if they were alone (Larson, Mannell, & Zuzanek, 1986). Another study constructed a scale of cooperativeness, i.e. how willing people were to constructively engage in activities with others. This study showed that the cooperativeness of an individual was a predictor of their happiness, though it did not conclusively show if their cooperation resulted in happiness or the other way around (Lu & Argyle, 1991). A study on the quality of relationships found that to avoid loneliness, people needed only one close relationship coupled with a network of other relationships. To form a close relationship required a growing amount of “self-disclosure,” or a willingness to reveal ones personal issues and feelings, and without it people with friends would still be lonely (Jackson, Soderlind & Weiss, 2000, Horesh, Apter, 2006). A similar study found that some students who had many friends with whom they often spent time were still plagued by loneliness, and this seemed to be related to their tendency to talk about impersonal topics, such as sports and pop music, instead of their personal life (Wheeler). Having a good close social network at work and maintaining low marital distress also play a beneficial role in one’s happiness and life satisfaction (Ruesch et al. 2004; Smith et al 2012).  (Pursuit of Happiness, Inc 2016)

Quote by Henry David Thoreau: “Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.”

Psychology used to believe that your happiness is determined by your genes…  But that you can pursue happiness by thwarting negative emotions such as pessimism, resentment, and anger. And we can foster positive emotions, such as empathy, serenity, and especially gratitude.

Some in psychology believe that you are born with a happiness set point. Does that mean it can be changed?

Definition of Pursue= follow (someone or something) in order to catch or attack them.

Or: (of a person or way) continue or proceed along (a path or route).

 

If you are always looking for it and can’t seem to find it then what?

I know when I am searching for happiness I am looking for outside sources or other people to make me happy – I can never find it. A few years ago I found that I needed to stop looking and relying on others to “Make me happy”.

If you think about it by relying on others to make me happy also allowed me to blame someone else when I was not happy. Staying in the vicious cycle of searching and blaming allowed me to stay in my unhappy place.

I have even had a client say: “I’ve got to get out of this marriage. I’ve got to find happiness for ME.” If you are in charge of your own happiness, then can’t you choose to be happy any time?

 

Do you but limits on when you will be happy? Lose weight, new job, more money, new car

Why can’t you just choose to be happy now?

To set the intention to be happy is the active desire and commitment to be happy. The decision to consciously choose attitudes and behaviors that lead to happiness over unhappiness.  (Pursuit of Happiness, Inc 2016)

The 5 steps to feeling happy

#1 Become aware of your emotions and feelings- the vibration within you- your thoughts: you need to constantly be aware of how you feel. Your feeling gauge your attitude and outward look on everything. Some of the things I do to stay in a happy mood are: reading,

#2 Counteract the negative thoughts and self – talk:  For example, reprogram your beliefs and values. Learn good self-management skills, good interpersonal skills, and good career-related skills. Choose to be in environments and around people that increase your probability of happiness. The persons who become the happiest and grow the most are those who also make truth and their own personal growth primary values.”

#3 Stop comparing yourself to others. Money does not buy happiness

#4 Stay engaged in good activities and Not TV- psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, People are happiest when they’re in the “flow.” This is a state in which your mind becomes thoroughly absorbed in a

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