10 Habits of Truly Happy People

10 Habits of Truly Happy People

10 Habits of Truly Happy People

Happy people are highly intentional.

10 Habits of Truly Happy People
Source: Canva

What comes to mind when you think of happiness? A sunny day at the beach, the birth of your firstborn, your wedding day, a son’s graduation, or landing that business deal!

Happiness means different things to different people. I believe that happiness is not something you pursue but rather something that ensues from making life-affirming choices.

Psychologist Dr. Martin Seligman from the University of Pennsylvania interviewed hundreds of people on what brought them happiness. Based on this study, he came up with three categories of what people did to bring greater joy into their lives.

The Pleasant Life:

People who pursue pleasure as a means to achieving happiness. They make their pleasures last by savoring the moment.

The Engaged Life:

The Engaged Life describes people who found satisafaction by immersing themselves in their passions.

The Meaningful Life:

People in pursuit of happiness through a meaningful life are motivated by a desire to contribute to a cause bigger than themselves.

Energy Flows Where Focus Goes

Many studies have shown us that where you focus your attention has a significant impact on your happiness. Happy people are highly intentional.

Pursuers of the Engaged Life and the Meaningful Life were profoundly passionate and used their strengths to better themselves and their world.

If you want to allow more happiness learn to incorporate the following habits into your life:

  1. Create your happiness.

Do you believe you are the locus of control of what happens in your life? Or do you think life happens to you? Instead of waiting for happiness to fall into your lap, you can nurture your sense of well-being by doing things that make you feel happy. Focus on what you can control.

Happy people are not showered with more blessings than the rest of us. Happy people create their happiness.

Instead o dwelling on the things you can’t control, put effort into the things you can.

2. Surround yourself with the right people.

Never underestimate the influence of your friends and family on your life! Just as misery loves company. Happiness, too, is contagious. Surround yourself with happy people. Hanging around negative people is draining.

3. Get enough sleep.

It’s a fact that sleep improves your mood. Your brain recharges when you sleep by removing toxic proteins accumulated during the day that are byproducts of regular neuronal activity, allowing you to wake up alert and with a clear mind. Poor sleeping habits raise your stress hormone and affect your energy, focus, and memory.

If you want to increase the chances of feeling happier, get more sleep.

4. Be present.

Fully embrace your present reality — the good and the bad. Make peace with your past. Recognize that no amount of guilt can change your history. And accept the uncertainty of the future because no amount of worry can dictate your future.

5. Learn to love yourself.

Give yourself the love and attention you give to others. Learn to accept all of who you are- your strengths and weaknesses. Loving yourself leads you to make healthier choices and improves your mental health.

6. Be grateful.

Studies have shown that regularly practicing gratitude rewires your brain, reduces stress and improves mental and physical health. Practicing gratitude is not about ignoring the challenges you have to face in your life but about recognizing that there is still so much you can be grateful for despite the challenges.

Start each day by listing all the things you can be grateful for. Look for the silver lining,

7. Exercise.

By getting some form of exercise for as little as 10 minutes a day, your body releases GABA, a neurotransmitter that soothes your brain and keeps you in control of your impulses.

Happy people exercise regularly. Exercise improves your mood!

8. Forgive, but don’t forget.

My mother often reminded us of the adage, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” Holding on to past hurts only hurts you more.

Happy people forgive, but they never forget. Forgive, but don’t give the wrongdoer another chance to hurt you again.

9. Allow yourself to feel.

Repressing your emotions is unhealthy. Expressing your feelings improves your mood. One study found that people who lived to be at least 100 were significantly more emotionally expressive than the average person.

10. Have a growth mindset.

People’s approaches to life fall under one of two categories: a fixed mindset or a growth mindset.

A fixed mindset believes you are who you are becauase you were born that way. That a person’s talents, habits, and attitudes are unchangeable.

People with a growth mindset believe that their abilities, attitudes, and ideas can change. And this makes them happier because they are more flexible at handling difficulties. They view challenges as opportunities for growth.

Bringing It All Together

There are many studies about what makes people happy. They often arrive at a similar conclusion: you can adopt habits to increase your well-being. And that happiness is determined by your approach to life and all its challenges. What makes you happy? Please share in the comments section below.

How To Leave A Legacy – Compelling Life Series

How To Leave A Legacy – Compelling Life Series

Your Legacy

Your time on earth is limited. But leaving a legacy is not something most of us consciously consider. And those who do, think of it as a financial gift. Such as leaving the family cottage to their kids or leaving assets to a university upon their death. But what about leaving a nonfinancial legacy?

Can you recall someone who made a life-changing impression on your life? Such as a teacher that recognized your potential, your grandparent who loved you unconditionally, a kind boss who gave you an unexpected promotion.

Or maybe it’s someone you see daily, such as a colleague who consistently sees the good in others. Or an assistant that bends over backward for your clients.

And what about that classmate at university? The one who passionately fights the small injustice in the system to change the rules for the better? That is legacy!

We’re Leaving One Whether We Know It or Not

When individuals imprint their deeds in the hearts and minds of those around them, they leave behind a legacy. What do people recall when they think of you right now? Maybe folks around you don‟t recall you at all. How would you like them to remember you?

What could you do now to leave an imprint on someone’s life? We’re not all called to open a girls’ school in South Africa, like Oprah Winfrey. Nor are we all compelled to find a home for orphans in Calcutta as Mother Theresa did.

But whether we like it or not, we’re all making impressions on those around us; however, brief our interaction — the cheerful barista at Starbucks who adds more to your day than providing you your morning coffee.

My Dad

My dad left a lasting legacy on me. He gave me a love and understanding of economics. And it was the one subject I was passionate about and excelled at in school. It provided me with a stepping stone to a fulfilling career in finance.

The legacy we leave is not just in our possessions but in the quality of our lives. Each day is an opportunity to add something to someone’s life.

Consider doing one thing each day, however insignificant it may seem. Who knows, you may be leaving a lasting legacy without even knowing it.

Nurturing Your Often Neglected Relationship

Nurturing Your Often Neglected Relationship

Here’s The Deal

Almost half of all marriages in North America end up in divorce. One of the most significant sources of conflict is over the topic of money. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, by the end of 2021, total household debt in the US exceeded a staggering $15 trillion.

Young people are starting their lives with a noose around their neck. Student loan debt in 2020 reached $1.56 trillion.

Across the globe, money is a significant cause of stress. And financial anxiety is not restricted to those without money!

All this comes as no surprise. I suspect most people would feel more comfortable baring their bodies on a first date than getting naked with their finances.

Yet money touches all aspects of our lives; our health and significant relationships, careers, and even our relationship with ourselves. Our relationship with money affects our general well-being.

The Root of The Problem

How we manage our finances begins with the relationship we have with money. It affects how we handle other aspects of our lives!

There is still a pervasive idea that money is the root of all evil. And rich folk are corrupt, selfish, entitled %$#!!!

Money is not the root of all evil. The heart of our money issues starts with the beliefs we inherited in our childhood. Many of us were raised in homes where the subject of money was either taboo or rarely discussed openly. If we did hear our parents talk about money, it was probably to say, “we can’t afford it.”

study conducted by Merrill Lynch and Age Wave showed that 61% of women surveyed said they would rather discuss their death than discuss the subject of money. And why not?

Let’s Talk About Money

Below are eight tips to help you nurture a healthier relationship with money.

1. Be Honest With Yourself

Take an honest look at where you stand right now by looking at your net worth statement — do you owe more than you own?

If you owe more than you own, what can you do right now to change that? Double up on your debt payments or double up on your contributions to your savings?

2. Know Where It’s Going!

Do you spend more than you earn? Keep good records of your expenses, savings, and investments –where is your money going? Check bank and credit card statements to ensure no mistakes or evidence of fraud. There are countless apps to track your spending and your saving.

3. Create a Budget With Your Values and Future Goals in Mind.

What portion of your income do you save? Cut down on compulsive shopping. Before you spend, ask yourself, “Does this get me closer to the life I want?” Find ways to save in each area of your budget.

If you have never budgeted before, it will take patience and practice sticking to it. Based on your current expenses, what percentage is going towards your goals?

4. Pay Yourself First

Put aside at least 10% of your income towards your goals. This practice is a form of self-care. How you allocate your money depends on your goals and when you hope to achieve them. If you lose sight of them along the way, keep going back to what your values are. They are like the North Star, keeping you aligned.

5. Deal with Debt

Pay off all credit card balances, especially those with the highest interest. Reduce the number of credit cards you carry. If your credit is terrible, repair it. Seek the services of a debt counselor if you’re overwhelmed by your debt.

6. Build an Emergency Fund

Save an equivalent of about 3 to 6 months’ income to deal with emergencies like car repairs, job loss, or short-term illness.

7. Become Aware of Your Emotional Triggers

Money means different things to different people. And we all respond differently to money. For some, it is a cause of distress and fear. For others, money is a source of power. What emotions are stirred up for you when dealing with money?

Become mindful about your existing relationship with money. Is money like the lover that’s here only for a good time and not a long time? Or is money for you like an emotionally unavailable partner?

Maybe, you are one of the lucky ones — where money showed up more akin to a committed spouse, who’s got your back.

What does money mean for you? Know your emotional triggers around money. How do you feel each time you have to make a financial decision. Are you aware of your money personality type?

8. Get Acquainted with Your Money Personality Type

There are five money personality types. Spender, Saver, Accumulator, Avoider, and Money Averse. Which one are you?

Do you see money as the source of all the problems in this world? Or are you an avoider, preferring to keep your head in the sand when it comes to your finances? Educate yourself about all things related to money! Knowledge is power. Become a badass at money!

Bringing It All Together

Your relationship with money and your money personality type essentially make up your money blueprint. Become well-acquainted with your money blueprint and make the necessary changes to nurture a healthier relationship with money. It will positively impact other areas of your life.

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Recommended Reading

Who Will You Be In 2022? 12 Strategies To Making It Happen.

Who Will You Be In 2022? 12 Strategies To Making It Happen.

1. Start With The Vision

2. Pick One or Two Things You Want to Achieve in 2022

3. What’s Worked In The Past?

4. Be Clear About What Lights You Up

5. What Would It Feel Like?

6. Who Would You Be? Align Your Identity To Your Goal(s)

7. Daily Envision Life As If You’ve Achieved Your Goal

8. Create A Step By Step Written Plan

9. Create Daily Micro-Habits To Support Your Goal (s)

10. Surround Yourself With The Right People

11. Be Grateful.


Bringing It All Together

Marrying For Money

Marrying For Money

Lately, I have had some interesting conversations with a group of women on the issues of love and money. In this day and age of female emancipation and equality, I was surprised that many of the women I spoke to still wanted to “be taken care of.”

I, for one, have never been motivated to marry someone with the idea that they “will take care of me.” I have selected partners based on their level of integrity, depth of conversations, chemistry, intellect, and healthy physique rather than their income or net worth.

So, I probed these women on what “being taken care of” entailed. I discovered it was not about a partner who would do the dishes, the laundry and give you tender loving care when you were ill. This woman wanted a partner who would take care of them financially! They wanted someone who was financially well off!

We choose partners for a variety of reasons. But, research shows that many women still marry for money. According to a report published in 2015 from the London School of Economics, “women are now more determined than ever to find a partner who will improve their financial prospects.”

And is there anything inherently wrong with that? We hold many romantic ideas about love. Does this more pragmatic approach to selecting a mate who can “take care of you financially?” rob us of some of our idealist values around love?

Instead of roses, chocolates, and poetry, is there something less than ideal to seek a partner who can provide a beautiful home, healthy pension, and golden nest egg while also giving you roses, expensive chocolates, and poetry?

What do you look for in a partner? Kindness, tenderness, and great sex? How much would these cost you? In other words, would you trade compassion, good listening skills, and empathy for ten million dollars? Would you trade them for the options a large sum of money can buy?

While you may not marry for money, would you drop someone because they had a massive amount of debt? Would your idea about a date change if they came by to pick you up in a Porche?

I suspect, amongst other things, a person’s financial state does have a bearing on whether we choose to marry them or not. What about you?

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