“Just in case you ever feel its absence…know happiness always returns.”
In my new book, Choosing the Life You Were Born to Live, I talk about the path to finding joy in your life. The Ancient Egyptians believed that when we die and are at the gates of heaven, we are asked two questions:
Have you found joy in your life?
Has your life brought joy to others?
I am a firm advocate in the belief that you cannot give what you do not have. If you are not happy (joyful) how can you possibly bring joy to others? If the gas tank on your car is empty, your car cannot take you anywhere, right? The same is true for you. If you are “empty,” you have nothing to give. So how do you “fill your tank?”
Stephen Covey has a great list of “12 things happy people do differently” that has been circulating on Facebook recently. I thought I would share it with you today as a reminder of some action steps you can take to be in a state of joy. (I embellished these a little with my own thoughts.)
1. Express gratitude – be thankful for what you have in your life instead of always focusing on what you do not have.
2. Cultivate optimism – your perception is your reality. Think optimistically and your world will follow.
3. Avoid comparing yourself to others – when you compare yourself to others, the nature of the human mind is that you will always be sure to come up short. The only person who you should be comparing yourself to is yourself in the past. Are you moving forward?
4. Practice random acts of kindness – help someone anonymously today.
5. Nurture social relationships – the nature of your relationships with others tells you a lot about the relationship you currently have with yourself. Our relationships are the things that matter most to us in the end. Make them worth it.
6. Develop strategies for coping – know what you need to do to stay centered. What are those things you do that make you feel better when your external world is in chaos?
7. Learn to forgive – open your heart and forgive others and yourself. Forgiveness is admitting that we are all alike in some way, shape and form.
8. Increase flow experiences – in other words, know your strengths. Do those things that “flow” and come easiest to you.
9. Savor life’s joys – stay in the present moment. Life is about the journey, not the end point.
10. Commit to your intentions – know what you want and commit to getting it. Direct your life in the direction YOU want instead of your life and external circumstances directing you.
11. Practice spirituality – recognize that life is bigger than you are and that there is a higher plan. Get in touch with your higher self and the potential that is deep inside. You know your gifts…practice them!
12. Take care of your body – your body houses the soul. It is your temple. Care for it, honor it and respect it.
Your happiness is your responsibility…no one else’s.
“Happiness depends upon ourselves.” ~Aristotle
Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc. You can learn more about her at www.ChrisSopa.com. Find her at Facebook.com/ChrisSopaInternational, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and Google+.
“Choosing the Life You Were Born to Live: How Changing Your Thoughts Will Change Your Life” by Chris Sopa published by Balboa Press.