Ten Keys To Happiness

Happiness is living in the moment

“We all have the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.” Anne Frank

What is happiness?

“Happiness is a way of life—an overriding outlook composed of qualities such as optimism, courage, love, and fulfillment. It’s not just tiptoeing through the tulips of la-la land, and it’s not something that changes every time your situation changes. It is nothing less than cherishing every day.” (Dr. Dan Baker, You’re Only Six Steps Away from Happiness: What happy people know)

Yet, also according to Dan Baker and Cathy Greenberg, “The world is full of women who are living lives defined by negatives—defined, that is, by what they believe they cannot do and what they do not have. (What Happy Women Know: How New Findings in Positive Psychology Can Change Women’s Lives for the Better)

To change your life for the better, here are ‘Ten Keys to Happiness’ that work for me and have stood the test of time:

  1. Find your life’s purpose and follow wherever it leads.
  2. Live in present time—in the now—where past embittering memories and the wistful fantasies to escape them in the future, no longer exist.
  3. Learn to love and respect yourself, be your own best friend, and develop the courage to face your fears.  That way you will learn to love and respect others and your relationships will become more harmonious.
  4. Walk within nature every day if possible.  At weekends enjoy a picnic in the bush and listen to the sounds of the wind and birds in the trees. Or go to the beach where the soothing rhythm of waves upon the shore can silence the cacophony of noise inside your head.
  5. Do something creative: make a garden, paint, draw, redesign your kitchen, write a poem, story, song, or book.
  6. Discover what each negative or upsetting experience has to teach you and it will lift you free of heartache.
  7. Find compassion in your heart for those who have hurt you by letting go of judgment. Instead, seek to understand. You may be surprised at what you learn.
  8. Find a way to share with others your gifts and talents and what you’ve learned from this experience called life.
  9. Give to others through random acts of kindness or anonymous gifts. Sometimes just listening respectfully to what someone needs to say can be the most priceless gift of all.
  10. Learn to appreciate what you have in the present moment, your experiences and the hidden gifts within them, and say a silent ‘thank you’ to the people who come into your life to reveal to you a greater knowledge of who you are, what works against you, and what your greatest potential might be.

Yet, often we know how to be happy as children, and ‘forget’ when we become adults. The following words of wisdom come from a song my son, Troy, wrote when he was just thirteen years old as his way of dealing with his father’s depressed and angry moods:

Look I know sad times are ahead of us,
but you mustn’t give up you must always trust,
that good times come as well as the bad, so live…

This is just a little message to say…
If you’re having a bad day…
Just live, yeah, just live…
C’mon it’ll pass, in the meantime live your life…
Oh yeah, live your life.

If you’ve had a bad day, it just doesn’t pay…
To get all uptight an’ take it out on somebody else…
‘Cause you’ll give them your troubles, your bad day…
You should stop your…your own dismay…
An’ let all the people around you, including yourself…
Live…yeah, just live.

If something bad crops up…It’s okay to be sad, but…
You can’t live a proper life bein’ sad or mad…
YOU KNOW WHAT I’M GONNA SAY NOW!
Just live… Yeah, just live.

Now with this little helping hand…
Every day of the year should be great or grand…
You shouldn’t have to worry, be upset, or mad…
Just live…Just live…


You might also like to read:

Making Dreams Come True
How to Escape the Victim Trap
Jimmy Buffett: An Ispiration to Share Your Talents
The Importance of Loving Yourself Unconditionally

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