So much research has been done on Happiness these days. What makes someone happy in the exact same circumstances as someone who isn’t? Why do some folks bounce back quicker from setbacks than others? Can you actually become happier? What makes people happy?
We’re starting to get a pretty danged good idea of why some people weather the slings and arrows of misfortune, and why others don’t. So, no matter what your circumstances, you can change the way you look at things. And when you do, the things you look at change. A pretty potent prescription for how to be happy!
Here are 7 things happy people say every day:
- I’m really happy to see you.
Just think for a moment of someone you truly love. A child perhaps. A parent. A best friend. Did you feel how your lips just upturned into a big smile? How a shine came into your eyes (okay, so you can’t see your own eyes, but you know how they look with a happiness sparkle shining through).
When you’re truly happy to see someone—and you tell that person so—it brightens both your days. Serotonin rises. You’ve just made that person happy, and in so doing, gave yourself a shot of it too!
- I’m SO happy for you!
New research shows that the happiest people are there when things go right for others. And vice-versa—that you’re happiest when your wins are celebrated with friends as well.
An interesting side note to this is the converse. Shelly Gable of the University of California, Santa Barbara, and her colleagues, showed that when romantic partners don’t celebrate each other’s successes, they’re more likely to break up. And when they do make a big deal over them, they’re more satisfied and committed to their relationship. And happier.
- I want to know more about that.
And it doesn’t even matter what “that” is. In a nutshell, happy people are just curious. Todd Kashdan and Colorado State U. psychologist Michael Steger found that people who felt curious on a given day experienced the most life satisfaction. And (and this just tweaks me), they engaged in more happiness-producing activities, including being grateful to someone else, and volunteering.
- That hurt.
Doesn’t that seem counter-intuitive? I mean, we’re all about happiness, right?
Right. But that does not mean hiding or denying negative emotions. Stuff happens. It just does. Life is full of disappointments, the big and the small.
And happy people acknowledge those! They confront disappointments and failures and negative emotions head on.
Interestingly, they use the emotions involved to change their behaviors. I.e., using anger to stick up for oneself. Or are motivated by guilt to change for the better.
Known as psychological flexibility, Columbia University psychologist George Bonanno found that being able to shift mental states in the aftermath of 9/11 for New Yorkers predicted being able to bounce back quicker. Those people were angry at times, but could also conceal those emotions when need be.
- I’ll try again tomorrow.
We don’t win ‘em all. No one does. I just had a setback this morning. My Wicked went Reserve. Which sounds all good and great but you don’t get points for Reserve! LOL. So we didn’t get skunked but we didn’t win. But you know what? We’ll get ‘em again tomorrow.
The thing is, by taking your licks and jumping back into the ring, you have as good of a chance as anyone else. But if you don’t try again, no way exists that you’re going to win.
As Denis Waitley said, “Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next. Spend your energies moving forward toward finding the answer.”
- This was a good day.
Happy people, at the end of the day and before retiring for bed, find the positive that occurred. That doesn’t mean there weren’t setbacks, but chances are, you’ve already re-hashed those!
I.e., part of our problem at the show today was a judge change—can’t predict that! But the good news is Wicked showed well and was still in the ribbons. Won her class and was Reserve Winners. And while I can’t control judging, I know I have my girl looking great, she’s wagging to beat the band, and was presented well.
In other words, we’ve done our part, and done it nicely. Good job!
By reinforcing the good that happened during the day, right before bedtime, you supply your subconscious with positivity to sleep on. And then wake up in the morning happy.
- Thank You.
Happy people are, simply put, grateful. And we all have a lot to be grateful for! I don’t care what negative is occurring, my goodness.
By taking time every day to say thank you, for your myriad of blessings, you stay in love rather than fear. We simply cannot feel gratitude and fear at the same time.
As Eckhart Tolle said, “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.” — A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose
What do you habitually say that brings you happiness?