Thursday, June 20, 2013

Come On Get Happy

It's almost Friday.  Does that make you happy? Or are you feeling bummed because it's only Thursday?  Are you a glass half full, or a glass half empty type of person?

According to an article in Psychology Today recently, the things that differentiate happy people from those of us who are gloomy, are not what you might think.

To summarize:

1. They take risks and push themselves beyond their comfort zone.
2. They are less analytical and detail-oriented.
3. They are buoyed, not threatened, by others' good fortune.
4. They don't deny or run away from negative emotions when they emerge.
5. They balance striving with pleasure.
6. They don't obsess about being happy.

Interestingly, the authors of the article point out that happiness is just one aspect of a well-lived life.  Others include: occasional sadness, sense of purpose, playfulness, psychological flexibility, autonomy, mastery and a sense of belonging.

Do you consider yourself to be happy?

Do any of these things describe you?  If not, can you see yourself successfully working on one of these areas?

I am getting much better at taking risks, I am too analytical, but sometimes not detail-oriented enough (I'm too busy being task-oriented and trying to get too many things done at the same time!), I am usually happy for other people's good fortune, although there are exceptions (oops!), I am extremely in touch with my negative emotions (ha!), I think I am pretty good at balancing striving with pleasure, although I need to work on completely relaxing (even when I'm doing things for pleasure, there is still usually lots of organizing and planning and analysing going on in my head), and I probably worry too much about being happy.  Given what an amazing blessed life I have, I am probably not as happy as I should be, because I worry too much.  I'm working on that!

"Happiness is nothing more than good health and a bad memory." - Albert Schweitzer

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