You Are In Control Of Your Own Happiness
This title may have made you think that you have come across another unrealistic motivational writing, and how can one be in control of his or her own happiness? Isn’t happiness something that you feel when you get something, be it an achievement or some material thing? The truth is we have greatly misunderstood happiness. It is absolutely true that it is you and just you who decides if you will be a happy person or not. Keep reading, and you will have a firm belief in the end; you will be in a position to control your happiness. We will start with an example and then move towards understanding the misunderstood concept of happiness.
“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust
Your Life Example
For example, let’s talk about you. At least once in your lifetime, you have come across a situation when you thought that everything is finished and there is no reason for living this life anymore. Such depressing moments are really hard to handle. But with the time you move on.
No matter how hard it is, you do move on with time. I called this an example because while reading this you must have thought about some example from your life. And that example is the best one you can understand my point from. You must have heard that time is a great healer and that’s something more than true.
Research On Happiness
Now, the thing is there are times that you are extremely unhappy, and you think that nothing can heal you, but as time passes you come across new things and the time comes when you have a smile on your face again, right?
There are many types of research that try to explain this mechanism of happiness. In 1978 at Northwestern University they interviewed twenty-two people who have won a very big lottery and twenty-nine people who were paralyzed due to accidents. Nearly all the people who won a lottery reported that after some time they reached the same happiness level they were at before winning the lottery. The people who got paralyzed said that after the accident they had been very depressed, but after some time they reached the same happiness level at which they were before the accident.
This research was so interesting that for many years psychologists and researchers worked on explaining this, and we got the concept of Hedonic Treadmill.
This concept states that there is a baseline of happiness in every one of us and when some event of happiness happens in our life, that baseline rises to a certain level. When a negative event like a death of a loved one or a loss in business decreases our happiness level, but eventually after some time we reach the same level of happiness that is our baseline. So people who have maintained this baseline at a good level tend to be happier than the others.
The trick here is to maintain the baseline of your happiness at a good and healthy level.
How To Increase Your Baseline Of Happiness
First, the thing you should keep in mind is that time passes, be it good or bad. So when anything bad happens, it’s not going to stay the same forever, and everything is going to be normal again. To increase your level of happiness, you can do the following:
Believe In Yourself
Understand that you are the one who makes yourself happy and sad. This is the most vital thing. Once you understand this point, it will be easier for you to control your happiness. When you think that you are not in control of something you don’t even bother to give it a try. But when you know that you are sitting in the driver’s seat with the steering wheel in your hand, and you are in full authority of taking it where ever you want. Only then you can control it.
Make Yourself A Part Of Something Big
You get depressed when you feel that you are of no importance to the world and there is no reason for you to be alive. Making yourself a part of something big will completely eliminate this feeling. There are certain ways you can do that. Some of them are:
- Thrills: Many people make use of thrills and indulge in adventures. This thrill is a very good step and makes you a challenging person. You learn to face dangers and fight them. It affects your mental health and makes you mentally strong as well, and the next time you face a mishap you are in a good position to face it head-on.
- Meditation: Meditation is another thing that is proven to increase your happiness level. It gives you mental strength and peace of mind. You rise to a very good position to control your feelings and emotions.
- Philanthropy: This is one great thing and has so long proven to be the best thing to do to make yourself happy and feel important. Giving someone happiness and then knowing that you are the reason for someone’s smile is the best thing that can happen in life. Philanthropy gives you the immense satisfaction that you want and gives meaning to your life.
Photo By: Johannes Rapprich