Contrary to popular belief happiness doesn’t happen naturally. And although it may not always be easy, it is something you can choose.
Running Studio 29 Photography, I commonly spent multiple days a week alone in my home office editing photos and holding one-sided conversations with Kenzo, Vík, or our Alexa. And, to be frank, working home alone can be draining, discouraging, and is commonly conducive to constant comparison and self-doubt. But, I have learned that true happiness is achieved with habits and experiences that I inherently choose and control.
- Be an observer and take time to appreciate all you have and live in the moment.
- Manage your time appropriately. I like to rank my daily tasks by importance. It helps me regulate my time spent in a manner that minimizes my stress levels and keeps me on task.
- Get up & get out. Getting up and taking even a 5 minute walk outside, around your home or office can change your entire mindset. And of-course, a little fresh air never hurts! Luckily, the dogs love being outside (even during the winter) so I can always count on them to go on a quick walk with me or a game of fetch in the back yard.
- Communicate your feelings truthfully. Be confident and start your sentences with “I.” Communicating your feelings is especially important during tough times.
- Choose your surroundings carefully and put yourself in situations you enjoy rather than dread. Make choices that benefit your happiness instead of causing you stress and discomfort.
- Learn to Say No. You do not need to always say Yes for the sake of being liked or being a team player. Say “Yes” to the things that add value to your life. Keep your schedule open for opportunities and experiences that may help you or others.
- Forgive. It takes so much energy to be angry. It is draining, stressful, and just a miserable way to live. Forgiveness takes practice, but will overall be the best way to move forward. Be sure to not only forgive others, but also yourself. Forgiveness has been a big component of my life that I have worked on and here is a perfect quote: “We have to remember, when we forgive we’re not doing it just for the other person, we’re doing it for our own good. When we hold on to unforgiveness and we live with grudges in our hearts, all we’re doing is building walls of separation.” –Joel Osteen
- Accepting what you can and cannot control or change. For me it is important to remember that acceptance IS NOT the same as surrendering or passively letting go, IT IS just accepting that there are certain things in life that are beyond our control.
- Put things into perspective and ask yourself, “Does this really matter?” Sometimes it helps to reframe the issue or circumstance and look at a it from a different point of view. For example, instead of being furious that you’re in traffic for 45 minutes, you could choose to appreciate this time to catch up on a good podcast, make a phone call to a friend, or jam out to the radio for a bit.
- Do things that you truly love for you and only you. I play ice hockey on a recreation league once a week. Being in the net is not only one of my favorite pastimes, but is also a huge de-stresser for me.
What are some things you do to keep yourself happy on a regular basis? Do any of these resonate with you?
Thanks again for reading and have a fantastic week!