Most of our clients tell us they want to be happy. That they work hard on their business so they can support their families, travel around the world, and spend more time with their friends and family. Ultimately, then, when they come to us, they are looking to find the answer to one of the most difficult questions in the world: HOW TO BE HAPPY.
How to be happy used to be a lot easier to answer when we were younger. A trip to Disney World. A new pair of shoes. A chocolate bar. Spending all day at the pool. However, as we get older, and maybe wiser, too, the answer to how to be happy tends to move closer to dollar signs…given the fact that, as adults, we’ve learned that MONEY can buy a lot of things, and indeed, all those things will, eventually, bring us closer to that sought-out happiness.
If you’ve googled HOW TO BE HAPPY enough times (I’ve had!), you’ll soon see there’s a great deal of debate out there.
Is happiness chance or a choice? And, conversely, can success, the success of your business and entrepreneurial journey, happen by chance or choice?
Gretchen Rubin, author of “The Happiness Project” and “Better Than Before” writes about how to be happy. Her main secret? Keep reading.
How to be happy: Training your body and your brain, every day, through “happy” habit formation
Building new habits is a tall order. No doubt about that. However, we soon found out that if we focused on one single goal or habit at a time, and then we moved to the next one, the feeling of accomplishment, of being in control of our own happiness and success to some extent, was not only rewarding, but also satisfying. And, soon, each habit on this list, day after day, became a lot easier to accomplish. We’re not going to lie…”Eating Well” (habit #1) was a lot of work and not that much fun at all…. but we lost almost 5 pounds while on it! So, you can imagine, how motivated we were to quickly jump to #2 and #3! And you can, too.
And, ultimately, what we also found out was that, success came a lot easier when we were HAPPY. We’re not sure why or how those two are related, but it happened. And we’re so excited for you to give it a try, too.
The following list of seven habits was “casually” developed by us, borrowing pieces and bits from things we heard, things we read, and things we knew we needed on our daily routines. Feel free to build your own list, or give this one a try.
How to be happy: #1 Eating Well
We didn’t work on a diet. And we didn’t even focused on losing weight, to be honest. Our main goal for eating well was just to actually eat and think about what we were eating. We had really bad habits from our older jobs, such as working non-stop of hours and then realizing it was 5pm and we have skipped lunch! Or working till 8p and then just “drink” our dinners because we were too tired to even think about what to fix for ourselves. We focused on simple, natural ingredients, fruits, vegetables, great proteins. WE WENT SO BASIC, yet, it worked. We started eating six meals a day, lost five pounds, and never looked back.
How to be happy: #2 Regular Physical Activity
Andrea focused on long walks with her dog in the morning, which were around 30 minutes when we started. Even though she had a full membership to one of those really fancy gyms, she knew she had to start small, and so she did! Then, she slowly added swimming, yoga and even gave spinning a second chance. But the key was to start somewhere! What can you do in 30 minutes? Or maybe 15? Anything counts. Remember, you’re not doing this to lose weight, but to get in touch with nature, relax, and slowly build happiness around small, daily and attainable habits. What a relief, right?
How to be happy: #3 Sleep
We were also terrible at sleeping. Working till 1am, and then setting the alarm at 5:45am because we were going to go for an early run (it only happened once, by the way). We had to realize that this kind of schedule was not a long-term gig, and, therefore, there was no point in working on it. Instead, we focused on getting eight hours of sleep and deleting all the alarms that just woke up us but didn’t do much for us. As we came to this habit after eating well, and also reaching our 30 minutes of walking, it was a lot easier to plan our days around the full eight hours of sleep. Mostly because we felt we have already accomplished so much!
How to be happy: #4 Daily Mindful Time
You’ve probably already read about meditating – it’s one of the go-to habits listed on Entrepreneur or Inc every time they feature a new start-up founder. We are the kind of people who likes to sit still, so we typically turned our heads the other way at any advice that had to do with “meditating.” However, we made it work for us. The daily walks count towards this goal, as do the lunches NOT IN FRONT OF THE COMPUTER, and turning off the phones after 10pm. Find something small that you can comfortably do every day, and you’ll see how easy it could be to grow it, if you want to!
How to be happy: #5 Connect in Real Time
Our main goal in life was to work from home. And when this happened, it was not everything we wanted it to be. This was a struggle for us as we were the first ones to celebrate Amazon Prime Now, Uber and any other app that brought us something WITHOUT any human interaction. But, guess what? It turns out people do need that human interaction. And the research we did about fostering connections in real-time, meaning NOT ONLINE, backed this up. If you work from home like we do, then, we encourage you to see at least one human being outside your household every day. It’s a tiny challenge but can really fire you up! Amanda and Andrea try to have lunch together at least once a week, for example, or we schedule coffee dates and happy hours with friends. We also travel a lot, which helps us disconnect and forces us to meet people out of our comfort zone.
How to be happy: #6 Mandatory Fun Time
Ah! We know. “Mandatory” can’t be good. We used to make fun of people who have “scheduled” fun time, sometimes even a month in advance. But, they did seem to be more outgoing and get to more places than we ever did! So, we stopped judging! Here, you can also use your 30-minute walk or happy hours or coffee dates from other habits you built above. However, challenge yourself and add an extra one…just for fun. A few ideas? Painting classes, cooking classes, ice skating, a road trip, you name it. So much to do!
How to be happy: #7 Say Thanks
Not to us! But in general. We also learned that one of the fastest ways to increase happiness (and success) is through expressing gratitude. This is kind of shortcut to allow you to acknowledge the good things in your life, and, if you believe in the law of attraction (why not?), saying thanks will also allow you to attract more great things to be thankful for. We started sending Thank You cards, which is something we get super lazy about, but we are still trying hard to work on. You had dinner with a friend? Send a thank you card. You had a good time at a baby shower? Send a thank you card. Someone bought you lunch because you forgot your wallet? Send a thank you card. It’s super silly, even the thought of buying stamps!, but for some reason, it does… it actually does make you happy!
Do you have any questions? Insights? Leave your comment below or reply, and let’s chat!
PS: We also a free email class for you … GROW YOUR INSTAGRAM IN YOUR SLEEP. Click here to join.
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