10 Steps to a Happier Life
Our modern lives are littered with stress. By retuning your approach to it, you can create a pure, lasting inner peace in place of modern worries. Here are some suggestions to help guide you towards lifelong happiness.
Live every moment. Be totally invested in life right now — not in the past or future. Many people are so busy worrying about last week and detailing tomorrow, that they forget to live today. Put more effort in “the now” and stop worrying — it just makes you older. That being said…
Don’t get old. Getting old means abandoning your creative instincts. It means stressing more. It means being serious all the time. But, there are many ninety-year-olds with who certainly don’t act “old.” Being young and creative is a state of mind, regardless of age. And creativity is the fuel of happiness. So, go lie in the grass and pick out shapes in the clouds. Roll around if you want to. It is perfectly alright, regardless of what society has lead you to believe.
Have experiences. Good or bad. Open yourself up. Be a vessel for new ideas, cultures, foods. Don’t pass judgement on people, things, or places that you haven’t yet experienced. Forge deep, human connections. That’s what life is all about.
Banish negative thinking from your life. It serves no purpose for anyone, and only makes life more toilsome. Stop it.
Tread lightly upon the Earth. Living lightly feels more purposeful and brings you closer to the planet. As hikers practice “Leave No Trace”, do so with your own life. When you are gone, how much of your imprint will be left here on the planet? Will you have left thousands of pounds of trash? How many non-renewable resources did you yourself consume? If you desperately need to be remembered when you’re gone, maybe you should commission a statue or portrait of yourself (supporting the arts at the same time!). Don’t leave future generations with piles of your waste to clean up.
“Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen…” (Thoreau). Stop stressing about everything and frantically multitasking. Do a few things, and do them well. “Our life is frittered away by detail…” Stop wasting your precious seconds halfheartedly doing twelve things at once. Do one thing at a time — wholeheartedly and passionately. Simplify your life, possessions, thoughts, and you’ll find yourself much more at peace.
Get out of your comfort zone. Try everything once, even if you are weary. You’ll be glad you did. See “Have experiences.”
Use your mind. Don’t squander it. Stop relying on technology to do your thinking for you. Your brain is unique and brilliant in its own way. Use it more and you’ll be amazed at your increase in creativity and overall satisfaction.
Treat your body with respect. Practice yoga, play tennis, go swimming. Eat natural foods. Have some chocolate, drink a beer. To put it simply: get exercise, eat well, indulge in moderation. Love your body and it will continue to serve you. As soon as you start disrespecting your body, it will start wasting away.
Reconnect with nature. There is no separation between humankind and nature; we are simply an extension of it. Be outside. Breathe in fresh air. Let the sun warm your soul. From a scientific standpoint, being outdoors boasts numerous benefits. From a human standpoint, it just feels right. Isn’t that all that matters? Go enjoy it.