I have always wondered, what makes some people happier than others, What helps them to find joy more easily in life, how can they rejoice with the little things and appreciate what they have on a constant basis, compared to those who have it all, but who seems empty and miserable inside?
What we do in life and our life experiences is often the result of the attitude we have towards things. Regardless of what we have or lack, the important is what we do with it. We have been gifted with free will, so that we can choose in any situation what we want, what suits our aspirations and desires. The choices we’re confronted with on a daily basis, from the food we eat and the clothes we wear, to the friends we have, our leisure activities and the work we perform, define the way we live life. Most of these choices are conscious, based on our inner beliefs and values, and they define who we are. But sometimes our choices are unconscious, influenced by social circumstances and social beliefs, role models, external triggers and even the need to please others.
A relatively new psychology, namely positive psychology developed by Martin Seligman, focuses on what makes life most worth living, stressing the importance of a positive, functioning and flourishing human. This approach focuses on building strength and making the lives of normal people more fulfilling. We are gifted with inner resources and when we learn how to use them properly, it makes a difference in the way we perceive and live life.
If we were to follow Seligman’s formula for life satisfaction, we would focus on combining engagement and meaning in our endeavors which would also bring us pleasure and so we would find a sense of fulfillment. For example, we could purposely design a beautiful day, imagine it happening and know exactly how it should feel in our body. Focusing on the positive sides and paying attention to body signals telling us how good it feels. Introducing more sports and movement in our daily routine also make us feel better connected to our bodies and to feel good about ourselves. Leisure activities, arts and crafts have been proven to slow down mental cognitive impairment, boost self-esteem and build on motoric skills. With all the possibilities people have nowadays, which can help to enrich their life’s experiences, I wonder how it is possible that so many people still get depressed, bored or just unhappy and unappreciative of life.
In the end it comes down to whether you want to live a happy joyful and fulfilling life or not. It is entirely up to YOU. Nobody can choose for you!