Common Habits of Happy People, by Erin A. Alexander, LPC

So, when we refer to the term “happiness” or “happy”, is this just a definition? Is it a state of being? Is it all relative?

Synonyms for happiness are words like: pleasure, contentment, satisfaction, joyfulness, merriment, delight, well-being, and enjoyment. Other definitions include, “the freedom from suffering”.

Regardless of the dictionary definitions, the term still seems rather subjective, leaving scientists to determine if happiness can be studied and measured scientifically. What scientists have been able to do is gather information based on self-reporting; after all, what matters is what our own perception of happiness is.

So what are some common habits of happy people?

  • Happy people are able to accept the fact that they (and others) have limitations.
  • Happy people have self-awareness regarding their basic emotions, such as compassion, empathy, and gratitude.
  • Happy people are able to have fun! They can stop and smell the roses…often.
  • Happy people are able to live fulfilling lives through their professions, creativity, and values. They feel like they have a purpose in life.
  • Happy people are generally able to resolve conflicts in a positive way.
  • Happy people are able to forgive themselves and others.
  • They engage in calming practices, such as meditation.
  • Happy people have a good sense of humor.
  • They are able to assertively communicate so that meaningful changes occur when needed.
  • Happy people frequently express their gratitude to those who have contributed to their lives.
  • They enjoy relaxing and energizing activities (a good balance between the two).
  • Happy people tend to focus on the positive.

What are some ways to facilitate long-term happiness?

  • Eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Enjoy your meals. Find activities that you enjoy.
  • Engage in some forms of meditative activities to help calm the mind, like mindful-based stress meditation and yoga.
  • Associate with uplifting people.
  • Engage in hobbies regularly. Schedule “me-time” regularly.
  • Laugh often!
  • Learn to say NO.
  • Decide what is your purpose in life and go for it!
  • Remember that your happiness is not dependent on anyone else, and that you cannot make anyone else happy. We are all responsible for our own.
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