There are many thoughts that might come to mind when you think of the word “happiness”. One might be naivety. Another could be I don’t know, xyz. But the fact of the matter is that those who have found it, and those who have committed their lives to find it know there’s a lot of fake news circulating about happiness. It’s a work. An ongoing work that involves tuning and retuning, altering, sifting, and sorting of all kinds. Which leads me to this list of hard things happy people do.
1. Happy people consistently audit their lives.
What this means is taking a closer look at the things that bring you happiness, and the things that make you clam up.
For me, I had to look at what could be done to change my situation. I was living with my mom and siblings with my twins – grateful for the support, while also losing my mind. Though I’ve had to make hard choices in transitioning out, and do things that I said I wouldn’t do (like move back to the South), it is for my (and my family’s) ULTIMATE benefit.
Think about the long-term outcome as opposed to being short-sighted. Ask yourself how this person will fit into where you are going, what you want out of life. Ask yourself if you need to sacrifice right now for what you want to see in your future.
2. Happy people have decided on their principles and fight tooth and nail for em.
I can’t help but think about the BLM fight right now when it comes to this point. Granted, you can’t foresee every single situation that will come your way. It’s impossible.
But you can try. You can try to decide what you’ll do in whatever tough situation based on your values and your strong belief system. If you don’t have that, it could really pose a problem.
One of the biggest problems for these charged police officers now is having to wrestle with the fact that they stood by while a man was murdered. And didn’t do as much as they could have to stop it.
Don’t be that guy. Decide on your principles. Stand firm by what you believe – no matter what. It’s a challenge for me, for sure. But I do think the world would be a better place if we were to put more thought and consideration into these types of things.
3. Happy people learn lessons in just about any damn thing.
I think about my entrepreneur friend who is killing the game right now. When we talk on the phone, I could say something that to me is like the simplest thing. But she finds deeper meanings and truths that I wouldn’t even be able to spot.
And because she is curious and wonders at things, she’s happy – even after having suffered a tragic loss. She strapped on her boots, and got to work, learning as much as she could as she went. Applying those lessons to go even higher.
Happy people learn and soak up knowledge and apply that knowledge to grow.
4. Happy people have learned to radically love themselves and therefore don’t need to hate on nobody else.
And this is huge. Like, if you find yourself having to criticize the way someone else chooses to do things, or the way some stranger lives their own life, it’s time to turn the mirror back on yourself.
In the Bible, it’s the story of removing the plank out of your own eye instead of harping on the splinter in someone else’s.
We all have faults. We are all trying to live this life in the best way we can. Happy people recognize this, and stay in their lane, happily doing the things that they can to find the most joy while they are still here.
5. Happy people know where they’ve come from, and know where they’re going.
Our past shapes us. There’s no denying it – it just does. More than likely, there is some pain or trauma in that said past. And it has the ability to keep us in a certain place if we let it. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We can choose to address the past, become acquainted with that pain, which enables us to move forward.
There’s power in your testimony. Finding healing creates so much opportunity for happiness and for finding meaning every day in this life.
Aside from finding your purpose, there’s the bit about actually living that purpose out. It’s one thing to know what you want to do (or at least have a great idea about it). It’s another thing to go and do whatever it takes to see it happen in your life.
So, goals is where I’m going with this. One of my big goals was to be able to work from home, doing something I’m passionate about. I don’t know a lot about manifesting, but I think I manifested that thing!
I got a text out of the clear blue sky, and now I’m going to be helping students find clarity and go after what they want in life 100% REMOTE! Crazy stuff out here, folks.
Make the goal. Make it plain. Say it out loud. Make a list, a vision board. Have an accountability partner. Whatever gets you there. But get there.
6. Happy people are brutally honest with themselves and others about mistakes.
Yooooo! When I say people are so so prideful? Lord have MERCY, y’all. But holding on to that pride will absolutely never ever give you a life of happiness. Being vulnerable will open you up to a joy that you’ll be waking up every day to experience more of.
So, if you’re in a feud with somebody, or whatever, let that crap go. Go and seek that person out (if they matter to you). Make it right. Don’t let something horrible happen to lead you into regret, you know? Because that ain’t happiness, either.
Pick up this book about vulnerability, while you’re at it.
7. Happy people give of themselves again and again in spite of their fear of vulnerability and pain.
My dear friend Heather Mae gave and gave and gave until her last moments on this earth.
Did she have it rough? Absolutely. Did she feel like giving up from time to time? I’m sure of it. But she had this quality about her that told her to keep trying, to keep giving, to keep opening herself up. And she did. And it’s what made her the most beautiful person I think I’ve ever met. I believe its what kept her going, having faith that the beauty she believed in would come to her.
Push through the dark moments. Just like Big Mama said in Soul Food, “If you let bad things stop you, you won’t be here for the good things.”
8. Happy people have hope when there is none.
There’s so much happening in this world that we could get really down and out about. The pandemic has stolen graduations, birthdays, various other milestone celebrations. It’s made us lonely. It’s taken jobs and health. To a lot of our chagrin, it’s made us sit down and think.
Adding fuel to the fire, there’s been a reigniting of global anger after the racially charged murder of George Floyd.
The world we once knew is gone. We will forever be changed after these events. How? We don’t really know. But what we can do is hold on to the happiness we have in our lives. We can look for the tiny specks that present themselves (because it’s absolutely never ever ALL bad). We can choose to live in a hopeful state and have faith that it is all working for our good.
Where do you stand in happiness? Is it a choice that you’ve made, that you’ll be happy regardless of the circumstance?
Make your happiness agreement here. And…
Always be happy,