3 Things I Learned About How to be Happy

This year, I learned and practiced some new ways of seeing the world that really made a difference in my life, so I thought I’d share them in case I can help someone in some way 🙂 Before I tell you what these things are, I’d like to highlight two points to bear in mind when reading the rest of the post:

  1. I strongly believe that our own happiness is our own responsibility, but in addition, we can contribute to make people feel happy, for example, showing kindness and love. However, it’s very difficult to truly love someone if we don’t love ourselves first.
  2. Changing the way we feel starts by changing the way we think. If we have been thinking the same way for years, changing that pattern and those automatic thoughts can be difficult but it’s possible. The process is similar to trying to get fit after years without having practiced exercise. You can learn more about how our brain creates thoughts in this article. A great tool to learn how to control our thoughts is Mindfulness because it helps us to be aware and change our thoughts.

Cognitive Triangle via Ellen's OCD Blog

Cognitive Triangle via Ellen’s OCD Blog

I’ve being reading and discussing with specialists about these topics a lot, so if you want me to develop any of those specific topics, I’ll be glad to do it, let me know in the comments, please! 😀

Now that the introduction to the topic is done, I will share the 3 eye-opener concepts that I learnt this year and changed my life:

1. The Truth about Fear

Feeling fear when there is a real danger in front of us is useful to prepare our body and mind to protect us and escape. However, feeling nervous and stressed on a daily basis means that our mind is creating subjective “dangerous” situations. For example, fear to speak in public, fear to fail a test, fear to not be accepted in a group of friends…this can lead to feel anxiety and, as you know, it’s a disease and it needs treatment. These subjective fears can be caused by different reasons depending on the person, but a very common one is a low self-esteem and the thoughts that come with it. Now, when you feel stressed or anxious about anything, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Am I going to be a victim or a fighter?
  2. Why am I choosing to feel bad about myself?
  3. Is it honest to choose to be weak instead of strong or is it just the easiest option?

 strength

 

2. External Opinions

We can’t control what other think but I really believe that we do need to control what we think. Sometimes we don’t realize that our own thoughts have being imposed by someone else and we have accept them as absolute truths without questioning them, even when these thoughts are not convenient for us. A very popular example is: someone taught us that a beautiful woman wears a size 6… fortunately, nowadays we know that that’s not true, so when you have a thought that you doesn’t make you feel very comfortable, you may ask yourself who put that thought in your mind, and then, you can judge it and make your own opinion according to your values.

change

3. Control

As I mentioned earlier, I think being in control of our own thoughts is fundamental. However, I believe that being in control of everything that happens to us is impossible. Actually, I see it as the easiest option: if we’d have control of all the situations in our lives, there won’t be surprises or challenges. I think the question to ask to ourselves when we feel stressed about trying to control everything is: am I not able to deal with uncertainty? Am I not prepared? Am I not strong enough to deal with unexpected situations? How boring would life be if I know everything that is going to happen? 🙂

control

I really hope you like this post but I’ll be glad to know if you think differently, so we can have a nice discussion in the comments or through email, and we may learn something new 😀

What did you learn in 2016 that changed your perception of the world?

courage

I wish you a Merry Christmas!

Lots of love,

Natalia.

These are the heels that I’m wearing:

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