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having a bad day
true happiness
dominant hand
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baby steps
common thread
step at a time
impossibility
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two steps
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How To Be Happy
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How To Be Happy

I have spent many years researching the principles of success and have found that the common thread with all paths is, first, to be happy. True happiness is an internal process and an extremely difficult state to achieve at will. When we are depressed or even just down in the dumps feeling happier seems an impossibility. Now, obviously, if you are clinically depressed you should seek help from a qualified professional. The professional will help break the cycle of sadness and start you on the road to recovery. Below are some exercises on how to be happy on your own.

If you are down and having a bad day, the first step to happiness is to work at being grateful and thankful for all you do have. If you're not hungry, if you have a roof over your head, if you're not sick be grateful and thankful. Look around and start noticing all the good things in your life no matter how small. As you train yourself to be grateful you will start noticing more and more to make you thankful. Look hard, (sometimes real hard,) for the good in all things. It's there if you just look.

Take baby steps on your road to happiness. You can't make the leap from sad to happy in one giant step. You can usually only make one or two steps up at a time from where you are. If your depressed you might try to be angry instead. Anger is not a positive emotion but it is much more positive than depression. Always strive for just a bit more happiness than you have at the moment and keep climbing from there. Listen to upbeat music, take a walk outside, exercise, read a positive article. Whatever your path just keep moving up towards happiness one step at a time.

Finally, practice the concept of Anchoring. Simply put, anchoring is the ability to capture a positive emotion and save it for later. You do this by linking your happy state or experience to a trigger that you devise. When you repeat the trigger at a later time you re-experience the positive emotion. My favorite trigger is just squeezing your non dominant hand into a fist. When you are experiencing an intense, positive moment or memory, (make sure your state is intense and not just so-so.) make a fist (not too tight) with your non dominant hand and hold it for about 10 seconds while experiencing the intense state or memory. Do this as many times as you can during the day to keep your "bank" full. Later, when you are feeling low, squeeze your fist for about a minute. The positive, happy feelings will return for you when you need them. Remember to keep your bank full so it's there for you when you need it. I find this procedure especially useful when my brain wakes me up in the middle of the night with negative thoughts.

In conclusion, Keep taking those baby steps towards happiness and try not to be discouraged. Remember, the better you feel the better your experiences. The better your experiences, the greater your successes.


Street Talk

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