The Secrets to Happiness

A short while ago I had a bit of a clear out and I came across a list in a particularly old notebook which was titled ’15 ways to be happy’. Ever since studying philosophy at College, Buddhist practice has always fascinated me so I assume this list was created my 17-year-old self, trying to emulate Buddhist tradition of inner peace and happiness. However pretentious I may have been as a hipster 17-year-old with a ridiculous fashion sense, I was impressed with the list and thought I’d share it.

Despite most of it appearing as common sense, it often gets lost within the busyness that is our lives. Lord knows with everything that is happening around the world right now, it can be overwhelming sombre and seem out of our control, but it is our reactions to situations that we can control.

So here are some wise words collected from around the internet as well as some of my friends and family, to serve as a reminder that happiness is a choice, not a result.

  1. Give up the need to always be right
  2. Live with energy, enthusiasm and empathy
  3. Read as much as possible
  4. Give up the need to impress others
  5. Get more sleep
  6. Try to make three people smile a day
  7. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up
  8. Let go of what you cannot change
  9. Envy is a waste of time
  10. In a week – will it matter?
  11. Stop worrying, if it is supposed to happen it will
  12. Allow yourself to be a beginner. No-one starts off excellent
  13. You always have a choice
  14. Enjoy the journey, there is no destination
  15. Keep perspective. From a distance, even a bumpy road looks smooth.

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