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Are you happy in your life? Maybe yes or maybe not, but this article “5 Secrets to Long Term Happiness in Life”, will surely help you to stay happy for most of your life.
Throughout this article, you’ll find quotes, definitions and methods which are related to long term and lasting happiness which will guide you towards a happy and healthy life.
Whenever you ask anyone what is their ultimate goal in life, that goal tends to be happiness. They don’t care what life brings them, they just want to be happy. Don’t we all just really want that? We all really want to be happy and we live in a world where we get our happiness from instant gratification. We strive for things that we want to obtain right here right now, quick and fast, and we think that will drive us to happiness. But it ends up being, we get whatever we want, and then we want more and more and more, and by the end, we don’t have that happiness.
Yes, we got the instant gratification, but the happiness kind of dies down once we obtain those external things that are out in the world which are materialistic rather than diving deeper and finding out what truly brings us happiness.
“Happiness is not something ready-made, It comes from your own actions.” – Dalai Lama
We create our own happiness, and it is not anything that we get or receive. So without further ado, let’s jump into the article, “5 Secrets to Long Term Happiness in Life”.
Secret 1: Relationships
So, the first one is relationships. Relationships could mean anything from your love life, your friendship, your family and etc. It’s the connection between the people that we have.
There is actually a really long study on Happiness during “The Great Depression” in the 1930’s done by Harvard University. (All the links for this research are down below)
They studied 268 people as well as some of their offspring. John F Kennedy was one of them. They studied both the physical and mental state of these people to see what drives the long-term happiness. These people came from all different walks of life, some of them eventually became doctors and lawyers, whereas some of them became alcoholics and schizophrenics.
They basically found out that the people with the happiest relationships were the happiest and overall healthiest of the group. Which basically correlates happiness to relationships and it’s not just the quantity of relationships that you have, it’s more so the value and the quality of the relationships that drive the long-term happiness. They also found that loneliness actually kills people. There’s actually a complete TED talk about this, and they actually related it to alcohol and smoking.
So, you wants to make sure that you are building these strong bond relationships with other people. We can kind of get into our daily routine, and it can be hard to find good relationships or start building new relationships, especially when we get older. But it’s essential to put aside time to nourish your relationships whether that’s going out or glass of wine or taking a walk with somebody. Even just making a simple phone call will do.
Also, something you could do if you are struggling to even connect with different people is maybe to join a group, like a running group or you can join a singles group. Instead of doing workouts at home, go take a workout class or go to a college and take a college course class. You can also reach out to your old friends and family too. There are many different ways that you can meet different people, and you have to make sure that you are nourishing your relationships just like you feed yourself.
Secret 2: Gratitude
So, the second secret to long term happiness in life is gratitude. There is a saying that “Gratitude is the right attitude.” It’s kind of a like a muscle and when you start making it a habit, like saying three things every day that you’re grateful for. Then you can bump it up to five, and you can do it throughout your whole day. Once you build up that gratitude muscle, it just becomes a daily habit.
It helps you become mentally happier, as well as physically. It also enhances your empathy, and when you show gratitude, you kind of emit that to other people, and in turn, you can form better bonds with people. This kind of correlates to the first secret. If you’re ever in doubt and you’re feeling down or feeling upset, just focus on the things that you’re grateful for. It can instantly shift your whole mindset. Make that a daily habit, and you will see your life flourish, and you’ll be extremely happy all the time.
Secret 3: Find Silver Lining in the Dark Cloud
So, the third secret out of the 5 secrets to long term happiness in life is to find happiness in every situation. You can shift your perspective of different things. If you have a particular situation happened to you, and someone else has that exact same experience, we can perceive it as two different situations. One of you could focus on the negative whereas the other can focus on the things that he or she got out of it and that whole experience can be shifted in an instant based on your thinking, your judgment towards it, your perspective of it and your reaction towards it.
Therefore, take life for what it is and realise that life is gonna happen no matter what and you’re gonna go through the situation you’re going through right now. You can either choose to complain and be negative and down, or you can understand that it’s happening and you can’t really change anything since it’s out of your control. You can make it into a pleasant and positive experience because you’re gonna go through it anyway and you might as well create a great experience for yourself.
So when those things do happen that are outside of your control, and you shift your perspective, you’re no longer stressing about things that you cannot physically change and then, in turn, you’ll be happier because you can take on whatever life throws at you. The things that you go through and the emotions that you’re feeling, take those as a lesson, and you take those as part of life’s journey, which reduces anxiety and stress, which causes unhappiness.
When you think about the future, you get anxious. When you think about the past, you get depressed. So, When you’re in the present moment, and you find the gratitude for the now, and you shift and focus on the happiness, and what you can get out of the present moment, that’s when stress and anxiety go in the back burner and in turn it creates long-term happiness.
Secret 4: Detachment
So, the fourth secret to long-term happiness in life is detaching and letting go. Attachment stems from insecurity and fear. When we attach to something, whether that’s the past, whether that’s something that we really want or something that’s bothering us, it comes from fear and anxiety of that situation. If you hold on to it which is kind of like a cloud that’s over your head that’s going with you everywhere you go, it’s just gonna bring you down.
When we’re attached to something, we tend to repeat it over and over in our heads and the more we repeat that the stronger the emotions are connected with it and the more of your focus and energy goes on it. You will not be able to live a happy life because it’s just stuck on you. This can really be detrimental to your health both physically and mentally because you’re attaching this emotional trauma to the situation that you have no control over and is not happening right now.
So instead of attaching to your thoughts or your emotions and thinking that you are them and you define yourself by them, you need to learn to look at it more as a flow. You have feelings, you’re gonna go through times, and you’re gonna have different experiences in life, but they’re all temporary. Learn to let the cloud flow and release it and let go of anything that’s coming from that situation that moves the cloud over and let the Sun Shine on you. If it is something that you are harping on your past, a quote from Oprah Winfrey’s book might help you
“Worrying and stressing about the past is like praying and wanting to change the past, you cannot do that.”
There is absolutely no point in worrying and stressing and attaching to the past and blaming your past on certain situations that are happening right now because you can’t change that. The fact that you’re harping on it and worrying about it is just a waste of time, and you’re totally not even being present. Your life is flowing past you. So, detach yourself from those things.
Secret 5: Limit Media
So, the fifth and final secret of long-term happiness is to limit negative mainstream media. The media plays a significant role in our day-to-day lives. We continually being thrown press, whether it’s through advertisement, TV or social media. Whatever it is, we are frequently being thrown emotions. When we watch these things, and we relate to them, we start thinking thoughts about them and then, in turn, create an emotional reaction to it.
Most of the time, media is made to draw your attention and create a reaction so that you focus on it or buy the product. When you create that emotional attachment to it in those thoughts, you get really connected to these media outlets, and it can totally reflect your attitude and your life. Whether that’s through games like playing violent games or watching violent TV shows like fighting, going on social media and reading about all the celebrity drama and all the negative news.
Also, when you turn on the news, literally it’s all negative, and the reason behind that is because it gets a reaction out of people. People are interested in it because it creates this “Whoa!” feeling in you. Then you relate that to yourself, and it’s not even happening in your situation. So it’s essential to limit media. Yes, it’s crucial to get news obviously. If there’s a hurricane or something like that and to get involved in things that really make a difference in the world. But to sit there and harp on something like politics or news or articles that are making you upset, there’s no point in doing that so.
Also, limiting your mainstream media and learning not to let it affect you and get emotionally involved in it, is extremely important to long-term happiness. Because the more you sit and harp on these media outlets, the more it’s gonna be engraved in your brain.
You’re gonna repeat it over and over, create emotional attachments to it, and in turn, you’re going to start drawing that attention and vibration to yourself, and sometimes it can go through the way you act and the behaviour that you have.
So, it’s essential to focus on yourself, focus on your benefit and to watch these things aren’t really doing anything for yourself, and you’re not doing anything for it as well. So what’s the point of doing it? Therefore, expose yourself to more positive sources. For example, if you are watching shows maybe skip through the commercials or limit them, don’t go to bed with the TV on and little things like that can definitely make a huge difference in your long-term happiness.
What Does the Research Say?
Finally, there was a UCLA neuroscientist, who studied the correlation between happiness and your brain, and he found that you end up getting emotions that stem from your thoughts, which then affect your brain. For a certain extent, this article 5 secrets to long term happiness in life, is based on some of his works too. He did some research and found a few things and below is a summary of his findings. His name is Alex Corp by the way.
So he said,
“Everything is interconnected. Gratitude improves your sleep, sleep reduces your pain, reducing your pain improves your mood, improved mood reduces your anxiety, which then enhances your focus and planning, your focus and planning help with decision-making, decision-making further reduces stress and improves enjoyment, enjoyment gives you more to be grateful for which keeps that loop of the upward spiral going. Enjoyment makes it more likely you’ll exercise and be social, which in turn makes you happier. So everything stems, from gratitude everything’s interconnected, which ends up being the social aspect of happiness and in turn reflects your brain, which, in turn, makes you happier.”
It’s pretty remarkable how you can create happiness on yourself from these simple little secrets.
So, that was all about the “5 Secrets to Long Term Happiness in Life” and if you enjoyed reading this article, don’t forget to share it with your friends as well. Also, feel free to check out our other articles on health and lifestyle.
Have a nice day!
- Internal: Other Articles on Lifestyle | My Daily Life Lessons
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