Happiness comes from peace. Peace comes from indifference.naval ravikant
One of my all time favorite songs is: Don’t Worry, Be Happy.
I listen to this song whenever I am down.
The term “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” was often used by Meher Baba.
Now, who doesn’t want to be happy
But whoever says they are happy, mean different things.
You may be happy because:
- You have enough money
- You have good relations
- You watched a comedy movie
- You heard a funny joke from your friend
- You have your family around
- You met a long lost friend
- Your colleague cracked a great joke
So many reasons. And rightly so.
Dalai Lama says that our end goal is to be happy. When you achieve happiness, no one can hurt you.
Here are my simple rules for a Happy Life:
#1. Worry Less
Happiness is not doing fun things. Happiness is doing meaningful things.Maxime Lagacé
I follow Stoicism
And one of the basic tenets of Stoicism is to think of the things you can and can not control and let go of things you can not control completely. This is so profound.
I believe one of the main reasons for all the stress in the world is that we often worry too much about facts and matters that are out of our reach. My question then is, why worry for things that are not in your control? Or things which have happened in the past?
We often think and worry about:
- News around the world
- Coronavirus (these days)
- Your past relations
- Your past jobs and why you lost your job!
- Your past life
95% of the things we worry about are out of our control. Then why worry about these?
Rather keep in mind about:
- Your relations
- Your friends
- How to better your relationships
- How to improve your life
- and so on
Steps to reduce Worry:
- Don’t watch daily news
- Don’t scroll through social media for more than 10 minutes a day (FB, IG, Twitter, etc)
- Talk your family and friends constantly
- Be in company with people you admire
- Keep yourself busy with online courses
- Read more books
- Watch a comedy movie
After following only 10% of what I have mentioned, I have seen my own levels of stress and worry have reduced significantly.
#2. Be Humble
One of the keys to happiness is a bad memory.Rita Mae Brown
It is easier said than done. I have tried this so many times. But have failed again and again. Humility is perhaps an underrated virtue.
Dictionary defines Humility as follows: “the quality of having a modest or low view of one’s importance.”
I am part of several voluntary organizations. I used to think that I was an important person in whichever company, organization I served. How wrong was I. I have come to realize that in a team, I am a member as equal or even lower qualified than most? Everyone together makes the team much stronger.
Ever since I have come to this realization, I have consciously tried to remain humble with regard to my contributions to the overall development. I must say, it is not easy.
You may think that in this age and world where it is so competitive, nobody seems humble. But I can give clear examples in great leaders who practiced humility and conquered the world: Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Princess Diana.
How to Practice Humility?
- Be a listener
- Respect other people’s perspectives
- Focus on the present
- Practice mindfulness
- Ask for help
- Let go of ego
- Send and Receive feedback
#3. Stay Positive
Cry. Forgive. Learn. Move on. Let your tears water the seeds of your future happiness.Steve Maraboli
Staying positive is to see goodness in every outcome of your life and happenings. One of the most positive personalities that I have met was my friend entrepreneur Michael D’Souza.
He has gone through a life full of challenges to arrive at a place now where he has reached now.
The year 2013 was a year that changed my entire course of life. I used to be anxious, had low self-esteem, was a negative person. Then I met a person named Junior (name changed) while on a trip to Brazil and his story completely changed my life.
Junior grew up in one of the favelas in Rio Di Janeiro without his parents by his side. You can just imagine how difficult it would have been growing up in such an environment.
But Junior did not give up. He beat the odds through sheer determination and positive thinking and is now a successful entrepreneur. One behavior of Junior came out very clear. He always thought about positive outcomes. His language, the words he used, the way he responded relayed positivity.
At that moment itself, I made up my mind that I will not delve further in negativity. I picked myself up from where I was and was able to completely turned around my life. The words you use to speak to yourself, the words you use in your thoughts make all the difference.
So instead of being negative, use following self-talk:
- I can do it.
- The more I practice, the better I get. I just need some help
- I am smart.
- I am a problem solver.
- I provide great solutions to tricky situations.
The words have the power to influence the outcome. Always use positive, energetic words. Do this and see the changes that will occur in your life.
#4. Keep Pushing Boundaries
He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe.marcus aurelius
One of my favorite thing that makes me happy is to push my own boundaries on self-improvement. For example with this blog: I made a commitment to write at least one article a day from the past couple of months. It was hard in the beginning and is now too. But I have not given up. I start writing when I have finished my daily work. And for continuously 2 hours I research and write.
Once I have completed an article, I get a boost of dopamine. I have accomplished so much, I say to myself. Same thing with my other areas of life like fitness, investments, etc.
Pushing boundaries to achieve positive results makes me happy! This is one of the ways I keep myself motivated.
To remain competent in life you have to push boundaries. This is how breakthroughs happen. If Thomas Edison had stopped at the 9999th time thinking he had failed inventing light bulb, things would be different these days.
Happiness is on the other side of growth. Each step you take towards your personal growth will increase your level of happiness tremendously.
#5. Be 1% Better Than Yesterday
If you want to be happy, be.Leo Tolstoy
In one of his masterpiece articles
It describes the importance of 1% improvement daily. And this is an awesome way to look at things. We often have unrealistic expectations about most of our outcomes and improvements. James Clear mentions that tiny gains trumps low or no gains.
Often we keep our expectations so high that we lose interest if we do not achieve them. This ultimately leads to a lot stress. James recommends to make tiny gains on a daily basis. Cumulatively over the year this makes up more than 37% gain compounded.
Isn’t this amazing?
Look for small gains in improvements in your life; be it learning, finances, investments. Don’t look to become rich overnight. Get Rich Slowly.
#6. Work Hard and Play Hard
You can only have bliss if you don’t chase it.Henepola Gunaratana
I have often seen people in two extreme spectrums. On one side I have seen people working extremely hard. On the other side, I have seen people playing too hard. Both of these scenarios are not recommended.
If you work too hard you will wear out sooner. You will lose enthusiasm and interest in your work. One of my earliest managers was a hard-working man with great abilities. He was young too. I admired him. But one of his weak points was that he put too much time into work and no play.
They don’t say, ‘all work and no play makes jack a dull boy’ without thinking.
At the same time, I had few friends who were all play and no work.
I believe in having a balanced way to enjoy life. Life is not all about work. You have to make time for your hobbies and personal development. I go out with my friends at least one time in two weeks to relax my mood and get new ideas. I try to play some group sport with my friends every week.
#7. Don’t Ignore the Small Stuff
Happiness is a gift and the trick is not to expect it but to delight in it when it comes.Charles Dickens
When was the last time you were grateful for the gifts you have in your life?
I have made gratitude journaling my daily practice. I have come to realize that the more thankful I am for the gifts in my life, the happier I am.
On a daily basis, I write about the things I have grateful for:
- Waking up in the morning
- Food I have on the table
- My family
- My kids
- My work
- My talents
- My curiosity
- The money I have
- My willingness to learn
- My willingness to grow
- My ‘don’t give up’ attitude
- Ideas that come to my mind
Being grateful is the best way to be happy. We could all delve in things we do not have. But when you see the things you do have, you will change your perspective. What you appreciate, appreciates.
If you look closely, the above points are so simple. Pat yourself on the back if you are already practicing these actively. If not, I ask you to take note of these simple yet effective steps and habits and follow them immediately. There is nothing in this world greater than being happy.
May you be well. May you be happy.
That’s your unlimited desires that are clouding your peace, your happiness.naval ravikant
Call to Action
If you want to increase your creativity and banish mediocrity, check out my FREE guide called: Ultimate Guide to Be More Creative.