Friday, 10 February 2012

Be happy.


I am a big believer that we choose to be happy. Happiness doesn’t happen to us, it is a choice. We choose how we respond to life’s events and circumstances, so just like we choose to be angry, we choose to be happy. Happiness is not handed to us and it isn’t something we find, it is the way we choose to live. I truly believe you can be as happy as you choose to be.

I am happy by nature, I always have been. I can recall days where I have tried to make an active choice to be grumpy and I don’t last five minutes. Grumpy is not becoming, happy is. I sat down today and thought of ways I set out to actively be happy, I thought I would share them with you.

Be positive. Having a negative mindset only breeds negativity. When you look at situations with a negative outlook you will only see the negative aspects. Try looking at all situations positively and you will feel positive about them. Of course some situations just aren’t positive, but we still have the choice to try to view them positively.

Surround yourself with like-minded people. I struggle being around negative people, I really do. I don’t mind people venting (heck it wouldn’t be healthy if we didn’t all vent now and again) but folks that view the world with a negative outlook just bum me out. I choose to be around positive peeps, they inspire me so much more.

Be kind. Whenever I think of times I haven’t been my kindest I don’t look back at them with joy. Kindness feels so much better than being unkind. Think about how the meanie in kids’ movies is always a grumpy, nasty character, the happy character is always painted as the kind one. Makes sense.

Train your mind. Just as I choose to wake up and enjoy mornings (and I am a born night owl) I also choose to love life. I don’t always love every aspect of life but I choose to be accepting and tolerant of things I cannot change. Happiness is a choice just as is anger and sadness. Choose to feel happy and you will eventually convince yourself that you are actually happy. I have had days where I have felt like being unhappy for valid reasons, and that’s okay. But I realise being unhappy takes a lot more energy than being happy. And doesn’t feel half as good!

Only share the good. Whenever I find myself submerged in gossip or negative talk about others I walk away feeling ‘blegh’. If however I spend time discussing awesome qualities or events I feel great. Once I started to choose to avoid gossip where possible (actually is it always possible) I noticed I started to talk negatively less. Make a conscious effort to speak nicely about others, you will soon instill a natural filter and find talking in a positive manner comes naturally.

Strive for happiness.  Rather than seeking happiness in material things, a location or relationships, cultivate a happy state of mind. Happiness isn’t something that happens, it is something we are individually responsible for. I am happy, why? Because I choose to be. And it is that easy. Ask yourself what you can do right now to be happier. And then work on that a little every day.

Reflect. I love to reflect on how far I have come in all areas of my life. In my early 20s I didn’t strive to get married and have kids. I love to reflect now on how much my life has changed and how grateful I am for my family. Reflecting on small positive things every day eventually teaches you to appreciate the small things. Heck I find joy in a bunch of flowers on my dining room table! Yes, I am grateful for flora.

Indulge in your happy place. The beach is my happy place. I can’t believe not everyone loves the beach, it is just so lovable! It is in many ways the essence of who I am. I am my most happiest on a sunny, warm afternoon, on the beach with my boys. When I was younger I would dream about escaping the grind and spending my days on the beach, but I never did it. Now I do. I spend every day I possibly can in summer lazing on the beach, it nourishes my soul. And then in winter I daydream about it to get me through the cold. In dark moments I have imagined myself sitting on the beach, picturing the ocean and imagining the sound of the waves and the smell of the salty air. Even the thought of the beach helps to improve my state of mind.

Do more of what brings you joy. In my pursuit of a fulfilled existence I have discovered joy can be found in the smallest of moments. Afternoon tea by myself with my favourite vintage coffee set. Sunday afternoon on the lounge surrounded my inspirational reading material. Sitting on the loungeroom floor with my son and just chatting. A day at the beach. I don’t waste time thinking about what I could be doing, I just do it. I am not talking about jumping on a plane and hiring a yacht in Lake Como (although, a lifetime spent in a bikini on a boat sure would be nice) I am talking about something right in front of you, right this very moment.

Be healthy. I feel my best when I feel healthy. A good sleep with an early bedtime and healthy, nutritious meals. Healthy body, healthy soul.

Be grateful. Sure I would love to not work and spend more time at home, but the fact of the matter is at this stage it is not possible. I am however grateful for my weekends, and I spend them wisely. I am also grateful for the opportunities working has brought me, I know I wouldn’t have had the same opportunities if I wasn’t working. Our lives aren’t always ideal and won’t always go to plan, but appreciating and being grateful for what we have can sure help create a happy mindset.

Act how you want to feel. Act grumpy, guess what, you will feel grumpy. Act happy, feel happy. Sounds easy doesn’t it? It is.

"If you want to be happy, be." ~ Leo Tolstoy

21 comments:

  1. I love reading what you love to write ... Definitely inspires me to be more positive and I thank you for that !!
    Reflecting .. When I was 18/19 I never thought I would be married with a baby by the time I was 25! Oh and fresh flowers placed nicely in the middle of my dining table ... Sheer joy!! X

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    1. Thank you Jayne. I can tell we're like-minded, you're a positive soul and I'm chuffed you like to read what I love to share.

      Thanks again lovely. xo

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  2. Thanks for sharing your lovely thoughts Peggy. You know, some days if I feel angry or down I come to read your blog to find something that will improve my mood. So far it has worked every time. :) x

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    1. Oh that is SO NICE! Thank you Kaisla, so nice to know. I am glad if I can help lift your spirits even if only for a moment. :) Stay happy gorgeous. xo

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  3. Lovely words Peggy (as always) and the Tolstoy quotes...one of my fvourites.

    Happy Weekend to you.
    xx

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    1. Tolstoy knew some stuff didn't he Kellie! I hope you had a happy weekend too. xo

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  4. Fantastic words and thoughts to live by xx

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    1. Thank you Jen. No point wasting the hours on anything less than being happy huh?! xo

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  5. Couldn't agree more.
    Life is full of ups, downs, twists and turns.
    The only thing we control is the attitude we ride with.
    I love how pro-actively happy you are - by choice.
    :-) xx

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    1. That's exactly right, well said Shar. It is all about the attitude and that we do have control over.

      Thank you, I do choose happiness. :) xo

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  6. Peggy, I adore you and your blog. Your positivity is infectious. I agree with you completely on your entire post. We do choose our own happiness. And I also don't do very well around negative people.
    Life is what we choose it to be - and why wouldn't we choose happy?! :) Have a wonderful weekend. xx
    ps. I'm bookmarking this post to re-read if I have a little down day.

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    1. Thank you Amelia, I am glad you enjoyed it. :)

      I understand some people prefer to be negative but I find negative energy is so draining! It is so much nicer (and easier) to be happy in my opinion!

      Thanks for stopping by, and thanks for bookmarking. I hope it brings you wee joy when you need it. xo

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  7. Great post Peggy - week 8 of Simplify your life is all about happiness and i will link to your post as it is very much in line with what I write about.

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    1. Oh thanks Deb, that's very kind of you! I am glad you can see a connection to SYL as I find the challenge very positive and inspiring. So thank you.

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  8. what a beautiful post. I really need to remind myself to be happy during times when I am overwhelmed! I am sure everyone else around me would then be happier too!

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    1. Thank you. We all need reminding now and again, I had one of those moments myself two weeks ago!

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  9. Thanks for the reminder Peggy. I particularly love the one about only sharing the good.
    Hope you had a happy weekend.

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    1. Thanks Nat. Sharing the good is a good habit to get into. And it's funny how once you start doing that it feels weird to share anything negative.

      I had a great weekend, thank you. I hope yours was happy too! xo

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  10. You truly have a gift Hun, you inspire through your words and that is such a beautiful talent to have. I'm with you, I choose to be happy and I have a rule that I do not focus on the negative things, through thoughts or words as I feel like that just gives the bad things more energy to grow. Leave them in the dark and they wither away leaving only the good stuff. That's my pollyanna philosophy anyway and it works most ofnthe time for me :) xx

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    1. I agree Sonia, when you feed negative thoughts and feelings the negative energy just grows. But when you ignore negativity it does fade into nothing.

      I love your philosophy, works for me! xo

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    2. ps...thank you sweets. :)

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