A quick Internet search on becoming happier will lead to thousands of tips about how to increase happiness: try these power poses, avoid that food, sleep in this position, have at least five friends, and on, and on, and on. Of course, everyone wants to increase their happiness, but do these random tips really work?
Here come bad news talking this and that
Yeah, give me all you got, don’t hold back
Yeah, well I should probably warn you I’ll be just fine
Yeah, no offense to you don’t waste your time
Here’s why: Because I’m happy…
—“Happy” by Pharrell Williams
We all know people who do not seem to miss a beat—they are always happy, no matter what life throws at them. They may have a hard day here and there, but they always make a comeback. They always find their happiness again. How can some people be so full of joy no matter what they go through?
The good news is that happiness is not a fixed quantity. No, quite the opposite, happiness is like a muscle that anyone can strengthen with the right exercises. When people practice happiness, they often grow happier. More than that, happiness can come from within oneself, so external circumstances and other people cannot easily steal it.
If happiness is an emotion that can be cultivated, what actually increases happiness and what tips are just clickbait?
That is why Thriveworks Bristol, VA offers increased happiness counseling. Living a happy, fulfilling life is possible. Our counselors have helped many clients separate fact from fiction when pursuing their personal happiness.
Many (if not most) people point to forces outside of themselves that may be stealing their happiness and holding them back. Once they make more money, have that vacation, form a certain relationship, or fill-in-the-blank, they will be happy. Without a doubt, circumstances and other people play a part in happiness, but they are not the whole story. More importantly, people often cannot control certain circumstances or other people, but they can make their own choices.
Increasing happiness may begin by identifying one’s own actions that are keeping happiness at arm’s length. The following are a few, of many, that may be keeping people from experiencing more happiness in their lives:
- Comparison: Looking at what others have/do instead of what you have/do leads to feelings of resentment or superiority, not happiness.
- Entitlement: Happiness often comes from an active posture toward life, not a passive, entitled posture.
- Control: People often think, when this happens, I’ll be truly happy … unfortunately, they may have little to no control over whether that event occurs. Instead, there are many things people have control over that affect their happiness.
- Blame: Pointing the finger at people instead of the problem disempowers people. There are always options, choices, and actions that can be taken to increase happiness.
Many people are working with a mental health professional to pinpoint which changes may be most effective in their lives. For most people, they may need to counteract these negative habits, but more importantly, pursuing happiness may mean pursuing small, daily changes that make a big difference, such as…
- Practicing mindfulness – paying attention to the moment. Notice feelings, thoughts, sensations without judgment. Mark their presence.
- Changing one’s mindset – being open to new growth: learning new talents, skills, knowledge, habits, feelings, and more
- Promoting thankfulness – looking for what is good and right in one’s life, noting it, and focusing upon it.
- Striving toward a goal – being forward focused. Choosing goals well and proactively working toward them can lead to great happiness.
There is no silver bullet for happiness. There are no short-cuts or magic potions that allow people to feel happy instantaneously. However, cultivating happiness often does not take a herculean effort either. Small, consistent attitude or routine changes can make a big difference in a person’s overall enjoyment of life.
Increasing Happiness Counseling at Thriveworks Bristol, VA
Happiness is an emotion that anyone can capture and increase within their lives. When people learn how to create their own happiness, life’s circumstances can come and go, but their happiness will remain relatively steady. Achieving that level of joy takes intentional effort, but no one has to pursue happiness alone. The mental health professionals at Thriveworks Bristol offer counseling for increasing happiness.
If you are ready to work on being happier, Thriveworks Bristol is ready to support and guide you along the way. When you call our office, here are a few things that may be helpful to know:
- A person will answer your call (not a voicemail, not an automated response).
- Weekend and evening appointments are available.
- Most insurance plans are accepted.
- There are no waitlists.
- New clients often see their counselor within 24 hours of their first call.
Are you ready to prioritize your happiness? Call Thriveworks Bristol today.