I know I’ve been guilty of it. We’ve all made comments like, “I can’t wait for the weekend,” “I can’t wait for finals to end,” or “I’ll be happy as soon as this is over with.” We often put off our happiness, instead of enjoying it in the present moment. But I believe that we have the opportunity to be happy every moment of every day; no matter what our external circumstances are. There will always be another test, another illness, or another unfortunate situation. But why should our happiness have to come in spurts? I think true happiness is finding the resilience and the determination to be optimistic no matter what situation you’re in.
With a new school year starting, I’ve already seen some Facebook statuses saying, “Only 175 days to go…” Why count away your life like that? Those 175 days will be filled with amazing adventures and they will lead to stronger friendships–maybe even a new, loving relationship. Sure, there will be challenging essays to write and math tests to pass, but but don’t let a calculus equation or A Tale of Two Cities steal your happiness. Don’t see them as simply hoops to jump through, either. Instead, think about how many great things happened to you this past year and how many wonderful things will happen to you this year; “these are the days that we must savor” as Van Morrison sang. So here are five ways to be happy right here, right now.
5 Ways to Enjoy Your Life Today:
1. Don’t count : Try to not count the months, days, or hours. This will only make you dread your circumstances even more and doing this prevents you from being “in the moment.” I’ll be the first to admit that this is hard for me (especially since I love statistics) but make an honest effort to “be here.”
2. Write your 5 Daily Gratitudes: Even in the most dire of situations there is always something to be thankful for. Latch on to that; it will help you get through a tough time.
3. Put it in perspective: Look around you and ask the age-old question, “Would I want to trade lives with anyone else?” Most people’s answers to that question is a blatant NO. I’ll bet that there is something absolutely remarkable about your life that you wouldn’t trade for the world.
4. Connect with people: Make an honest effort to get to know the people who are in the same situation as you. There can be great camaraderie when you are sharing a life experience with someone.
5. Celebrate your past: Even if you had a painful childhood or a rough adolescence, appreciate how the experience made you a better, stronger person. Every life experience has something to offer us; all we have to do is ask ourselves, “What did I learn from this?”