What is happiness?? Is it a state, feeling, emotion...Or everything together. When I was little, I used to watch the movies portraying the well known 'American Dream' with people living in big houses, having a comfortable life, and lifestyle allowing you to travel and buy the things you want. When I grew up, I still kept thinking that once I can afford myself all the things I want - I will be happy, but now, after many years of crazy hustle in order to afford myself all those things that I wanted - I can confidently say, THINGS WILL NOT MAKE YOU HAPPY. Either it is a new iPhone 12, a new watch or the pair of expensive shoes that you believe would change your life forever - trust me, they will not make you happy...Well, maybe for a few hours, but the next day it would feel like you have always had those things and you'd need to start looking for another 'source' of happiness. If happiness was in acquisition or possession of certain items, then we'd perhaps all live surrounded by mountains of useless stuff. Therefore, in this article, I would like to share my opinion on what real happiness is.
As the person who tends to analyse everything, time-of-time I ask myself questions to reflect on the things and experiences that I like. Therefore, ask yourself with me " When I am the happiest or When do I feel like I am the most alive". I listed my answers to these questions and who knows, maybe you'd find yourself in it too. 🙂
I am happy when I am doing things I like. You have to do things that you are excited about. If you are keen to read about specific topics - then maybe you should consider doing something in life with it? If you are excited to work in a particular organisation - then perhaps there are the ways for you to get in there, by starting with an internship, for example? Maybe you want to start a business or YouTube channel - then start with the first draft of your ideas already tomorrow! Really, we live one life, and therefore it is super important to do things that you like in life. Even if people around keep saying to you " It's a bullshit - better focus on your study", when you believe in your idea and wanna try - go for it, do not listen to anyone, TRY. Better to try and fail, then not to and regret about it your whole life.
I am happy when I am talking to my family members and friends. Often when I am walking somewhere, I am calling my granny and there is something that she always says when she picks up the phone " Is it a holiday today? You made me the happiest person in the world by calling" - the way she says it, I can feel her positive energy, despite staying a few thousand kilometres away. The same goes for other people I love. Often hearing someone's voice, instead of reading a text message, can make a day much brighter. When did you call your grandparents last time? Call them tonight, they'd be happy to talk to you!
I am happy when I look in the mirror and don't want to change anything about my appearance. You know how important it is to love yourself!! I believe it's one of the core components of happiness and a contributing factor to success in whatever you plan to do in the future. We live in the informational era, and therefore we are continuously exposed to the data that propagates the "ideal" looks and standards. It is ABSURD!! We are all born different and beautiful in our own unique way. Therefore, love yourself for who you are. Do not waste life trying to achieve something that does not make sense. Be the best version of yourself, without comparing yourself with anyone else, because you are BEAUTIFUL already!
I am happy when I am not using social media. I used to have account everywhere in the past, but for 2 years, the only accounts I have is the one on Instagram and LinkedIn for professional network. On Instagram, I chose to follow only a few people whose content I find inspiring and who do not post regularly, meaning I get to check the account max. 10 minutes a day. You know what, it feels great to not know who went where/ bought which sweater or ate what kind of sandwich for lunch etc. Just think about it - an average person spends around 2,5 hours daily checking their social media accounts. Not mentioning the news, YouTube, email or googling the random things on the internet. All this time could be dedicated to spending more time with friends, reading, developing your skills, walking outside etc. It would not only benefit your mental and physical health but would also make you much happier with yourself :)
I am happy when I am uncomfortable. Maybe it sounds weird, but I am happy when I do something that makes me feel very far away from my comfort zone. Why? Because it brings an incredible feeling of satisfaction after you have done something that completely contradicts your nature, and you succeeded in it. The more often you are stepping out of the comfort zone, the more walls you break that are standing on your way. In order to grow - you need to feel pain. That's why so many people prefer to stay in their comfort zones. Do not be one of those people. You are capable of much more!
I am happy when I am grateful. There are so many things to be grateful for every day. Grateful for the healthy body, grateful for your family and partner, grateful for being able to live in this beautiful country, grateful to have access to clean water, shower, food - EVERY SINGLE DAY. Many people in the world do not have this luxury that for us is daily normal. Think about it.... Also, does it mean that people living in poorer countries are less happy? I think it's opposite. Just check the charts of countries with the largest suicide rate - most of them are super developed countries with a high living standard. In poorer countries - people don't even think about depression. No-one knows what 'burnout' means. Where I used to live before, no-one talked about being depressed and usually, when one person was starting to complain - we'd say " Patience and work will grind everything". There exists even the practice called " Occupational therapy" that is meant to cure your "depression" with extra work. Sounds crazy, but it does work xD.
I am happy when I am honest and authentic to myself. Did you ever do or say certain things only to be liked by someone or to be accepted by a group, when in fact it wasn't you at all? How did it feel afterwards? To be happy, it is essential to understand who you really are. For example, I am an introvert, and throughout a long period of my life, I thought that there was something wrong with me, until I realised that it's just who I am and that I am happy with myself. I am happy when I am alone. I am happy to not be part of the group. I am pleased to be true Me, and wish you to be happy with yourself too🙂
All these things are non-materialistic, meaning happiness is something that can be found in our day to day life. Be happy. Life is beautiful.