I have a successful friend, a prominent neurosurgeon, blessed with a husband who adores her (who’s also a stay-at-home dad so she can pursue her career), and two healthy, happy kids. She wasn’t happy in Oregon, so she moved the whole family to the other coast. She wasn’t happy there. She’s now in the process of moving the whole family back to Oregon to try a different town, a different hospital.
Here’s the thing we often forget – ONLY 10% OF OUR HAPPINESS IS BASED ON OUR CIRCUMSTANCES!
Yet for most of us, when we’re not feeling happy – we focus, almost solely, on that 10%.
I call it IBHW disease – I’LL BE HAPPY WHEN disease.
This beautiful, brilliant friend of mine has moved her family from coast to coast and back again in pursuit of happiness. I don’t think she’s going to find it on either coast.
Because happiness is an inside job.
90% of our happiness is based on our mindset and our habits and our daily actions.
Yet when we feel unhappy or discontent, instead of focusing on those internal thoughts, habits and actions we can shift, we try to figure out what EXTERIOR CIRCUMSTANCES we can change.
Here are 5 things you can do to feel happier, that have NOTHING to do with changing your circumstances.
1. Commit a random act of kindness. Get out of your own head and focusing on your problems, and do something nice for someone else. It can even be someone you don’t even know.
2. Look for the good in EVERY situation. Have an Eeyore mentality and always think the sky if falling? Force yourself to find something good regardless of the circumstance. I promise, it’s always there.
3. Set a goal. It can be small and accomplished in a week. Here’s the great thing – even if you don’t reach your goal, you’ll feel happier. It’s in the setting of the goal we find happiness, not in the reaching of it.
4. Create a daily gratitude practice. Gratitude is the most powerful emotion for creating happiness. Put sticky note on your bathroom mirror or the dash of your car until it becomes second nature. Gratitude. Gratitude. Gratitude.
5. Reach out. Connections are vital to our soul. Invite someone to lunch. Join a gym. Call an old friend you’ve lost touch with. Take a class at the community center. Connect with people, not things.
Everyone of these is backed by science, won’t cost you a dime – and best of all, you won’t need a moving van!