The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.
- Benjamin Franklin
According to science, happiness is just a state of mind. But I believe that what we do in our daily lives, our daily habits, our perspectives have a way of influencing our happiness or sadness. I find that unhappiness, like smoking, or any contagious disease has a way to spread among the people you live with. For example, in a family, when a mother goes through a rough patch in her life, her sadness and gloominess don't really give out positive vibes to her husband and children.
For that last two years, I have been reading up and talking to some people and have noticed a certain pattern and very similar behaviour traits among unhappy people. I have most certainly realised that unhappy people have particular habits and develop a certain nature over time which makes them have that particular outlook in life and situations which only makes them unhappier. Some of these habits lead to unhappiness more than others do. Below I have listed some habits that unhappy people have:
1. Procrastinating Happiness
People wait for good things to happen to be happy about certain situations. But the thing is, like other human demands, the standard set for happiness is also endless. Waiting for something to happen just to be happy tomorrow is a bad habit which is very easy to do. Telling yourself “I’ll be happy tomorrow when this happens.” puts emphasis on certain situations which may or may not happen tomorrow. So if the thing doesn’t happen does that mean that you won’t be happy? Instead of postponing your happiness live in the ‘now’ and be happy with what you have.
2. Hoarding Material Happiness
Like I said previously, the human demands are endless. Some people have the habit of hoarding materials and money in the name of happiness. They feel that having monetary possession and materialistic demand can give them happiness. But there is no end to human wants and there is no end to the money that you can demand. Buy what you need, use what you have and do not inculcate materialistic love in your life. Because happiness is a feeling that only real things like love for your family, your friends can provide. Not money.
This comes from a personal experience. For around two years of my life, I faced extreme sadness because of some of my behaviour, and some other problems. What I did was I kept it to myself, didn’t share it with anyone thinking that no one can understand my pain and sadness. Big mistake. Sharing your thoughts and problems with others most certainly help. Especially sharing it with your elders who have the experience and wisdom to help you out with your problems which can eventually lead to happiness.
Human beings tend to expect certain things from certain situations and when the results aren’t at par with their expectations, it triggers off unhappiness. The only thing to do here is to give your best and leave the rest. Healthy expectations are encouraged as when you perform you are eligible to expect certain things. It is very important to manage your expectations and not let it get the better of you.
Having a negative outlook in your life can do you only more harm. It is how you think that influences what you do. Think positively and get a better perspective on life. Even in the worst situations, a wee bit of optimism always helps.
6. Not Letting go of the Past
People have a tendency to keep thinking about the mistakes made in the past and not letting go. This only increases the unhappiness and gives your morale a hit. Instead, it is better to let go of the past but not exactly forgetting about it. Keep it in the back of your mind so that you don’t repeat again but don’t let it get the better of you so much so that you are unable to focus on the ‘now.’
7. Comparison and Jealousy
This habit of comparing yourself with others and harbouring jealousy can be found in people of all ages. Parents compare themselves with their colleagues, their children with other children. But the thing about life is that everyone has their own. Every person is different from the other and faces situations different from the other. Instead of comparing ourselves with others to get ahead, it is better to compare ourselves with our old selves. Improvement is key. Learn from your past and improve yourself to reach to the top.
Situations and conditions in your life are somethings that you cannot control. But habits and perspectives you can. Have a better and optimistic outlook in life. There is no use in holding grudges as no one benefits from it. Make happiness a practice. Life is too short to be unhappy.
Written by Anand JC
Reader. Writer. Teacher. Preacher. Occasional Exerciser. Master Procrastinator ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)