We all want to live a life as happy as we can live it. The problem is that we can’t control everything around us. This means that things will sometimes go our way, and sometimes they won’t. It is when things don’t go our way that our happiness is challenged. In order to be prepared for these times, we need to practice happiness on a daily basis so that we can handle when things don’t go our way. Here are three things to practice in order to live a happier life:
1. Gratitude Journal
The gratitude journal is simply a journal you write into each day listing a few things you are grateful about. You can write in a notebook or any text editing program on your computer or phone. I would recommend writing on paper as something special happens when you physically write the words. There is a connection between your brain and paper that creates a special feeling each time you write in your journal. When should you write in your journal? You can write in your journal any time, and multiple times throughout each day, but my recommendation is that you write in your journal at least every morning. This will help you be grateful for being alive and give you a positive view on the day. You can write about anything you are grateful to have or have experienced. I answer the following three prompts each day:
- One thing in my past I am grateful for is…
- One thing I am presently grateful for is…
- One person I am grateful for today is…
Responding to these prompts on a daily basis helps put me in a gratefulness mindset. It can help you too!!!!
2. Perform a Selfless Act
We may think we do this all the time, and maybe at times we do. No act is too small to be considered, but sometimes bigger acts of selflessness have an even bigger impact. It is important to give of yourself. Your time is the most valuable thing you have, thus giving of your time is the best thing you can give. Do something for your local church, shelter, or event. Be an example of giving. When we give, we experience a piece of joy we cannot pay to receive. Try to do at least one big, selfless act a month. Volunteer for an event at least once a month where you can be an example of how we need to live our lives to spread joy and happiness.
3. The Jar of Awesome
The Jar of Awesome is a recommendation provided from Tim Ferriss’ book, Tools of Titans, to improve your happiness. All you need is a mason jar, some small pieces of paper, and great things to happen. Whenever anything great happens, write it on a small piece of paper, and put it in the jar. You can then read from this jar on a regular basis so that you can remember all the great things that have happened and what you should be grateful for. You also want to read from the Jar of Awesome during sad times. We tend to feel like the world is coming to an end when something really bad happens. Read from the jar during these times to remind you of the good times you have had and the times you can’t wait to experience in the future.
Happiness is not something you do…it is something you become. You can be happy by simply trying to be a happier person. These three suggestions are only three of many different things that can bring more joy into your life and teach you gratitude. It is not enough to just read the kinds of things you need to do to be happy. You have to practice these things too. You need to be doing at least one of these if you want to bring more joy into your life. If you can do two or all three, even better. Don’t sit back and hope that happiness finds you. Take the steps and the actions so you can find it!!!