We all want to be happy because happiness is a wonderful emotion. However, we seldom find happiness because we constantly do things that steal our happiness. Some people are conscious of these things, while most of us aren’t.
This article strives to increase your happiness levels by listing the seven major things we must stop doing if we want to be happier.
1.Living Up to the Society’s Expectations
We love living up to the society’s expectations, and we thus become unhappy when we are in a position that prevents us from aligning with what the society wants. Besides, living up to the society’s expectations makes us unhappy because it prevents us from being authentic.
2.Overanalyzing the Future
Overanalyzing the future by trying to pinpoint all possibilities steals our happiness because it results in anxiety. It makes us constantly worry about the things that can go wrong, even when they are beyond our control.
3.Wanting What Others Have
Most of us are addicted to wanting what celebrities, politicians and our Facebook friends have. We think we’ll live happier lives if we obtain what these folks have. Little do we know that wanting what others have causes unhappiness because it results in envy and makes us feel inadequate.
4.Watching the News
The News makes us over-focus on the negative part of life by showing us how other people are suffering, and it usually results in us worrying about things that are beyond our circle of influence.
5.Forcing People to Behave the Way We Want
We become frustrated when we force people to behave the way we want because we can’t control their environment, thoughts, and everything that affects their behavior. I stopped forcing my friends and siblings to behave the way I want, and I strived to accept their behavior after realizing that my efforts often resulted in anger and disappointment, which eventually made me unhappy.
6.Identifying With Our Material Possessions
Identifying our worth with our material possessions leads to sadness when we lose them. Moreover, it results in us constantly worrying about losing our possessions and how we’ll replace them.
‘Anger, resentment, and hatred are poisons that you drink, and you expect somebody else to die.’ –Sadhguru, Indian Mystic
Holding a grudge against someone makes us unhappy because it leads to negative emotions such as anger, hate, jealousy, and resentment. Furthermore, it makes us dwell on bad feelings or the events that led to the grudge. Also, it prevents us from enjoying the present moment by making us focus on how we’ll get back at those who wronged us.
The universe provided us with everything we need to be happy. However, we sabotage our happiness by doing the above things. We must, therefore, stop doing them if we want to be happy.
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Modern Society: Its Obsession with the Future & the Problems with This Obsession
Recently, while thinking about life, I discovered the greatest error of modern society: our obsession with the future.
We are trained to focus on the future from a young age. When we start school, it trains us to focus on passing our exams so that we have a great future. And when we grow up, our friends and relatives urge us to focus on getting a good job that will ensure a successful future. After getting the job, our colleagues tell us that life will only get better when we get promoted.
For this reason, almost everyone is future-obsessed. We wake up thinking about the future, spend the day thinking about the future, and sleep thinking about it. Everything we do is concerned with the future, and we are seldom in the present moment. We are so obsessed with the future that we sometimes succumb to depression because we can’t predict whether our future will be bright.
It’s time we stop obsessing about the future because this obsession has several disadvantages. For instance, it has blinded us from seeing what’s happening to our world. Most of us are unaware that greed is causing the extinction of our forests, water sources, and animals because we are busy planning for the future. We are unaware that there’s no future without the natural environment.
Furthermore, over-focusing on the future has prevented us from seeing the beauty of the present moment. We can’t take a break and take a walk in nature, or watch the beautiful sky at night and other amazing views that surround us because we are busy thinking about the future.
Moreover, we can’t find time to think about our relationship with Infinite Intelligence/God, and we seldom allocate time for prayer and meditation because such activities will waste our time. The time we need to obsess about the future.
As well, most of us can’t connect with the radiant light of Infinite Intelligence because our minds are always in the future. Infinite intelligence exists in the present moment, and therefore, obsessing about the future cuts our connection to it.
Instead of over-focusing on the future, we must strive to focus on the present moment because of its immense benefits. The present moment connects us to a powerful and unlimited intelligence and increases our chances of having peak experiences. Besides this, focusing on the present moment enables us to notice what’s happening around us.
Lastly, this focus ensures that we align our actions, decisions, and thoughts with the type of future we want, and it also opens our eyes to the infinite opportunities around us that we seldom notice because we are busy thinking about the future.
PEACE BE WITH YOU.
N/B – Some readers might think this article wants them to avoid thinking about the future completely. However, this article supports thinking and planning for the future. It only discourages overthinking or obsessing about it. Its main message is, ‘you are free to plan and think about the future but don’t obsess about it.’
Check out this post for more benefits of living in the present moment.
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The Most Effective Gratitude Formula
I embraced gratitude after reading that gratitude is beneficial for one’s mental and spiritual health. However, I never experienced the benefits of gratitude even after practicing it for a while.
It then dawned on me that I used the wrong gratitude formula after reading Joe Vitale’s book, The Secret Prayer. In the book, Joe Vitale provides an amazing gratitude formula that enabled me to experience all the benefits of gratitude.
According to Joe Vitale, we must practice gratitude by being thankful for all the small things in our lives. He thus provided the following example of a gratitude prayer for a small pottery bowl:
‘Thank you, bowl, for being in my life and for being present in this corner of my desk to brighten and beautify this corner of my life. I am so deeply appreciative of your rich red, which reminds me of manifestation and the root chakra. I appreciate your red color, beautiful little pottery bowl. Thank you for reminding me how connected to the earth we are as I think about the clay, which the potter utilized to mold and shape you, beautiful pottery bowl (Joe Vitale, The Secret Prayer).’
This gratitude prayer reminded me about the many small things that I took for granted even though they helped me in my daily life. For this reason, I created gratitude prayers for my laptop, spoon, chair, table, cup, shoes, bed, mattress, and every small thing I had.
For instance, I thanked my laptop for enabling me to conduct internet research and post articles. Primarily, I thanked it for enabling me to make money from home. Besides this, I thanked my mattress for enabling me to sleep comfortably, and for reminding me that some people sleep on a cold floor.
The gratitude prayers for my laptop, mattress and all other small things made me realize that I always take my blessings for granted. I realized how foolish I was not to notice that I am blessed with the little things I need to live a comfortable life.
You must also try this gratitude formula and you’ll be amazed by how it will make you a positive and happy person. Create a gratitude prayer for everything that makes you happy or comfortable. By doing this, you’ll realize that you are always blessed even in hard times because you never lack the small but important things. You seldom lack food to eat, clothes to wear, a bed to sleep, a phone to communicate with your loved ones, and many other things.
Peace be with you.
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