Over the past few years I’ve seen a huge increase in my happiness; the duration and frequency. These days it’s easier to pinpoint the times that I’m not happy. And I’m talking truly happy folks, not just content or comfortable. Everyone has different things in their lives that bring them joy and happiness, but many of us also have things that we think make us happy. Some of these things are the ideas that if we have more money we will be happier, and that spending money and buying things will also bring us more happiness. There’s some research that has disproved both of those ideas, but that’s a topic for a different day.
I want to share quick what I’ve figured out is my own personal recipe for happiness. I made a big career move a few years ago when I left a good, secure job with the military for a civilian career. The type of job I left was coveted in the military so people thought I was a little out of my mind for giving it up. I was in a position in life where I was able to take a little risk so I tuned out the opinions and went for it. That was a turning point for me. That was the first time I truly tuned out the opinions of those around me and listened to my own voice. My voice was telling me that I’d rather be happy than comfortable, and that with my education I could likely find a job of equal pay and possibly comparable benefits. And I was fortunate enough that it worked out that way.
Since then I’ve been paying close attention to what truly brings me happiness and what makes me unhappy, my triggers in a way. This extra inward attention has meant that I’ve had to stop listening to those around me, mostly society in general. (I do value the opinions of close friends and family) Here’s an example: I’m pretty introverted and am not really into late nights and the bar scene, but for a while there was something in my head saying, “You’re single and in your 20’s, you should be out on a Friday night and having fun!” But that type of Friday night isn’t fun for me. I’d rather have a low-key Friday night at a friend’s house. Or I’m even content to relax alone at my house on a Friday night. I am perfectly ok doing nothing on a Friday. At some point I allowed myself to just do what makes me happy, regardless of what society thinks I should do.
This focus on what makes me happy has got me to the point where I’ve really embraced my nerdy self. Since I no longer feel the need to fill my time in a way that the general population thinks I “should,” I have more time to do the things I actually enjoy, such as volunteering, working on this blog, reading, and so on. All of this has made me a lot more comfortable in my own skin.
To sum this up, here’s my recipe: Pay attention to what makes you happy and unhappy. Do more of what makes you happy. Do less of what makes you unhappy (within reason-we should still do things such as go to work, brush our teeth, and wash our clothes.) Tune out the world’s expectation of what you “should” be doing.
Now for the Simply Save tie-in. I’ve realized that the things that bring me the most happiness have little or nothing to do with money. And actually involve spending a lot less than when I was doing what I felt like I “should” do.Pay attention to your triggers & do more of what makes you happy & less of what doesn't. Click To Tweet
This is just my story and what worked for me. Maybe it’s just part of growing up. But if you haven’t already figured out the key to your happiness, I encourage you to pay attention to your triggers and do more of what makes you happy and less of what doesn’t. It’s worth it.