What is happiness anyway? That was the topic of the Explore Life Lesson for June. Life Coach Patti Phillips did a great job walking us through what happiness is and what makes us happy? In a society that tends to base so much happiness on material items, it’s refreshing to hear that happiness is a choice, unique to all of us and 40% of it is under our control.

Happiness is not determined by the car you drive or the size of your home so permission granted to stop trying to “keep up with the Jones.” Let’s focus on what truly makes you happy. Make choices based on your true authentic self and use some of the techniques proven by science that can increase your happiness.

Positive psychology is the study of happiness. While traditional psychology focuses on moving someone from mental illness to just ok or average as good enough, Positive psychology focuses on moving someone from average to thriving. I like that idea.

Do you remember the old Alka-seltzer commercial? Plop plop fizz fizz oh what a relief it is! It was a pill you could take for instant relief from an upset stomach and indigestion. Did it work? In the short term likely yes, but then you would go back to popping that same pill to find a quick fix or to mask the problem. What we really need to do is focus on preventing the problem first.

This reminded me of how we tend to try to find the quick fix to happiness by buying our way to happiness. Bad day? Treat yourself to some new shoes, that will make you feel better (plop) have a glass of wine when you get home (plop) treat yourself to some ice-cream (fizz) and have another glass of wine (fizz.) You get the picture. We cover up our trouble and sadness with things, instead of focusing on choices everyday that add up to true happiness.

There are various tools and techniques that can shift our mental health from just ok to thriving. You need to choose the ones that work for you. HMC focuses on many of these options through our membership, events and messages sent out weekly. I invite you to take advantage of what we have to offer and live your life thriving.

Top 5 tips to living a happy life

1.  Journal daily by writing down three things you are grateful for
2.  Meditate daily, even if it is only for a minute, taking time to be mindful is powerful
3.  Be active by choosing activities that are true to your authentic self
4.  Give back to others by consciously doing random acts of kindness or volunteering
5.  Stay connected to others through groups like HMC

It’s your choice!
I choose happiness

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