How to be truly happy?
Isn‘t that a question we have asked ourselves time and time again?
Even if some of us haven‘t directly asked ourselves this tiny and yet huge question, we all have tried to act according to its answer.
Still, it doesn‘t always work. Sometimes, health is not enough, stability and safety are not enough. Sometimes we appear to have it all and yet don‘t feel the joyful spark, the kind laugh of happiness inside.
With this article, I won‘t tell you what you can DO to be happy. I want to talk about a CHANGE OF MIND.
Because happiness is based on perception. Not situation.
Watch my video about the happiness formula
The 5 Pillars of Happiness
I pinpointed this subject to five primordial pillars.
The pillars can be strengthened through popular practices such as journaling, yoga, meditation, health, but those things are not the bases of happiness, they are simply optional tools, within many, which can help to build the five pillars of happiness.
First Pillar: Choice
Happiness is a choice. You do not need to be, have or achieve anything to allow yourself to be happy now.
Situations and happiness don‘t need to correlate.
Take the decision to be happy right now. You are worthy and deserving right now.
This doesn‘t need to mean that you will suddenly feel good, but it will free you of the belief that certain achievements are necessary for you to even consider having the right and possibility to enjoy your life already.
I recommend looking up „Claire Wineland“ on the Internet for inspiration.
Once you have realized that happiness is a decision you can make today, we can move to pillar number two.
Second Pillar: Self-responsibility
No one can make me angry. No one can make me sad.
Surely, someone can do something or say something that triggers a feeling of anger in me.
It is my interpretation of a situation, which is based on my belief system, that triggers anger in me. It is always within my power to choose the interpretation I want to believe.
A good question to ask ourselves in any situation where we assume something about someone else‘s actions is: „Is this true?“
There are many situations in life where we choose an interpretation that denigrates our worth or where we decide to victimize ourselves by giving others the power to make us feel a certain way.
So take back your power, go out of the victim mode and know that no one can make you feel a certain way if you don‘t let them. You are responsible for your own emotions, which also mean that others are responsible for their emotions.
It is not anyone‘s job to make you happy, nor is it your job to make someone else happy.
This doesn‘t mean that you should use your mind to reinterpret and excuse inappropriate behaviors, be they your own or other‘s. If someone is acting in an inappropriate way towards you, you can however use your discernment to understand that if this person is acting like you are worthless, it doesn‘t mean that you are worthless. Even in abusive situations, understanding the second pillar is very important. In this way you can take back your power and find the strength to stand up for yourself, speak up and if necessary leave relationships and situations that are not in alignment with your highest good.
Third Pillar: Forgiveness
First step to forgiveness is forgiving yourself. And that can be tough. In certain cultures, we learn very early to feel ashamed of ourselves.
Especially if you have integrated the second pillar and are now less able to blame others for your emotions, you might find yourself pointing the finger at yourself even more.
Looking at ourselves to create the improvement we want in our lives is a good approach.
But this change doesn‘t need to arise out of shame. It can arise out of love, compassion and a wish to grow.
We are all human beings, doing the best we can with what we have learned in life so far. There is no shame in that.
In the same way, everyone else is also acting based on beliefs they have learned to integrate through their experience of life so far. Knowing that can make forgiving others easier.
Especially once you realize how much energy it takes to blame someone else over and over again.
Fourth Pillar: Fearlessness
I don‘t mean: have no fears ever. Fear is a natural mechanism that helps us to survive. There are some truly dangerous things we could do in life like jumping from the top of a building, where fear can play an important role. Even though one could argue that in such a situation clear discernment without fear would be enough to survive.
Extreme situations aside, we tend to feel fear in the safest moments. Fear of talking in front of the class, fear of starting to write a novel, fear of pursuing a side hustle or of getting emotionally hurt in a relationship.
This kind of fear can really inhibit us from living the life we truly want.
Therefore, be fearless.
Or better said: the fear can be there; it will probably always be there to some degree. Still allow yourself to make decisions out of trust and courage instead of fear.
Oftentimes we tend to be afraid of exactly that which is important to us.
Something that can help when you feel fear arising is telling yourself „oh, I feel EXCITEMENT“.
Fifth Pillar: Presence
What would be any writing about happiness if it didn‘t include presence? To me, it would not be complete.
True, fully embodied happiness happens in the now. Even when you are looking forward to something, the feeling you have is in your body right now.
Some of the most powerful practices to instantly lift your mood and feel happy, are practices in which one connects fully with the present moment, where anything prior to the now and anything coming up later falls into the back and lets the vibrant strength and potency of the now come forth.
Singing, music, movement, meditation, breath, laughing… So the best thing you can do to experience more happiness is to drop into your body, as it is anchored in the now.
I hope you found this article helpful!
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Much much love,