It’s one of the most heard pieces of advice. “Do what makes you happy”. Any yet, most of truly don’t follow this.
Oh yes, we’re fully aware that there are SO many constraints as to why we think we can’t do this:
- I can’t afford to live AND to do what I truly love
- Doing what I love is beyond my capabilities
- My career is profitable and promising and throwing that away seems really silly
The list can go on for quite a while really. But here’s a snag for you. If someone where to truly ask you, “What would you do in your dream scenario?” Could you actually provide a complete answer?
Your job – a lot of us find satisfaction in our jobs, enjoyment even. A lot of us also treat a job as a means to an end to enable us to do the things we enjoy and to exist. A very select few of us, LOVE what we do. A common conundrum is that money buys happiness. Now whilst yes, in today’s society we do require a certain level of income to meet our own personal standards of living, once the bare necessities are met, the question then raises itself again. If you are unhappy at work, but earn enough money to finance your happiness outside of it – does that match up against being constantly happy even whilst doing “work” if it means taking a pay cut? An interesting question.
This TED TALK by Scott Dinsmore is a great watch when you’ve got 17 mins to spare one morning having breakfast.
Even though you may not have a clear vision for your career, you are probably curious about things which may or may not be obvious to you. It’s important to follow your curiosity and uncover your less obvious interests. Those random likes, interests that you may not even realise yourself – they hold hidden elements to unlocking your desires. I, for example, have a very strange liking and passion for Treasure Chests. Weird – I know right!……The lock box, old school type with huge lock that requires an epic key to open. So I chose to examine this more closely and I believe that it ties in with my love for adventuring, of thrill-seeking. The chest is a promise of unknown reward that requires an adventurous undertaking to achieve. The more challenging the quest, the more ornate the chest – the greater the reward. Take the time to examine these signs for yourself.
One of the greatest pieces of wisdom I’ve heard on the topic – some advice on this advice, if you will – is this:
The first is not believing that you are capable of achieving your dream. Let’s get something really clear, right now. Every single person is more than capable of doing what they want. What it boils down to, is the level of sacrifice you are prepared to put in to get that goal. THAT’s the hard bit. If you break it down into small goals, any task is achievable. I absolutely believe that if you want something badly enough – you can achieve it.
The second is that people set ceilings as a safety barrier. I’ve seen people put the word “Junior” or similar words in front of their email signature and titles as a way of limiting the amount of perceived responsibility that they have to deal with. If this is self imposed and you are content with your current state, then fair enough. BUT, if you are wishing for something more, and have put a self-enforced barrier in the way? Time to break out the Battering Ram my friends. You can actively change your own perceptions and expectations of yourself and others. Have a read back to September 24 and our A Challenge to You, Possibler – How We Can Positively Influence Expectation & Perception post.
So How Do We Find Happiness?
Here’s 3 simple things that take 5 minutes for you to do, and will really get you on your way.
- What does Happiness Mean to you?
Like we mentioned before – examine all the little things that interest you, that make you smile. What links them? Are there common themes? Write them down – see what comes up.
- What Triggers Positive & Negative Emotions In Yourself?
Negativity is such a killer of motivation and it’s a difficult hurdle to overcome because its easier to dwell in than to raise the energy to push through and rephrase the situation positively. And I choose that phrasing carefully – because that is exactly what you CAN do. Maybe rainy days make your feel down. A potential turn-around is that, yes it is raining – but the plant sure could use it and its going to make it all look sensational tomorrow. Seriously. We’re asking to you go around singing joy to everyone, but internally, do everything you can to boost yourself. Why not? Even if it sounds silly, you can laugh at the way you sound internally.
- Set Meaningful Goals For Yourself
Think about who and what you represent now – and then about the person you want to become. What do you need to do to become the person you value?
Be realistic. Acknowledge your situation and abilities when you’re planning.
Keep your goals action-oriented. Don’t focus on things or on what you have or don’t have. Focus on what you can do.
Frame your goals in a positive light. You’re more likely to achieve your goals if you see them as something you’re working toward, not something you’re working against.
The key point I think – Is that Happiness can be a choice. There are things that MAKE you happy, but they don’t occur 100% of every day. So MAKE yourself happy. Choose to do the things to enable you to be like this. What’s great about the whole situation? Is that this modern world – enables us to have the choice. Help out those who need it – if you are in that great place, help other to be the same. Share the Happy. Give the Happy freely.
Assume It’s Possible – I love our Tag Line (chose it for a reason!)