What is the Key to True Happiness?

What is the key to true happiness and how can we achieve it?

When we begin to speak about happiness, more questions than answers seem to arise. For example, what is happiness? Is it an emotion, a feeling or state of mind, is it an action? I believe that happiness can be all of the above and more. We have heard that we are responsible for our own happiness and no one else is responsible for it, not our partners, children, friends, pets, family, etc. They all can contribute or take away from a part of our happiness, but ultimately, the key to true happiness is dependent upon how we view ourselves, how we view others, how we view situations, the acceptance of all the aforementioned, and our openness to change.

How we view ourselves:

How we view ourselves is critical to our happiness. If we have core limiting beliefs, then no, we will not experience much, if any happiness because we are too busy focusing on what we cannot do, what we do not have, who we wish we were, and so forth. How we view ourselves, whether good or not so great, plays a huge part in our internalization of how we also view people and situations. Before any action is taken towards achieving happiness, we must first look at ourselves.

How we view others:

If we view people as mostly having ill intentions, then we will always act with extreme caution and in most cases, self-sabotage the relationships in which we engage. This could be intimate, working, platonic, or familial relationships, and so forth. On the other hand, if we view people as mostly “good” or having the best of intentions in most cases, then we will tend to be more empathetic, open, and forgiving towards others. Furthermore, if we are more community-minded or open to helping hands and working with others, versus being siloed or distant from others, this impacts our happiness as well.

How we view situations:

How we view our situations does not mean we have to be optimistic about everything, but rather this is addressing how we respond to certain stimuli or events. Are we avoiding confrontation, being confrontational, or thinking about the best way forward within each situation? Many people tend to be consumed by their emotions; this in turn creates tunnel vision. You can no longer see the world past what you are feeling and this creates a cycle of negativity, meaning that how you respond to others and situations becomes based off hurt, anger, and feelings alike. Instead of being consumed by what we perceive as wrongdoings against us in life, we should instead shift our focus and efforts to what we can control and take hold of.

Acceptance of the reality of how we view ourselves, people, and situations:

Acceptance of the reality of how we view ourselves, people, and situations, means that we can view these things from a perspective of truth. By accepting the reality of people, situations, and even ourselves, we can then make decisions accordingly based on actuality and not how we think things should be or go.

Our openness to change and willingness to grow:

Openness to change will only be possible if we can accept the reality of our lives and the world around us. We can then take that information and make changes where needed and possible. Just because we are open to change does not mean that we will suddenly feel happy and content, but we will be in a place of growth and that may be challenging and difficult at times. If we are open, we can better navigate through the situations that will require change and grow ourselves as a result.

Happiness can be subjective, but what is not subjective is if we have inner peace or not–that is the key to true happiness and where joy dwells. If we are bogged down with negative views and beliefs all the time, inner peace and happiness is almost non-existent. We must take hold of ourselves, our thoughts, and our actions, decide what serves us and what does not, and rid ourselves of those core limiting beliefs to truly experience happiness.

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