Did you know as a society overall, we are getting richer but not happier? If anything, we have actually been getting richer but unhappier. Is this because our consumer society is failing to deliver lives that give our passion and purpose?
Tim Jackson said “we are being persuaded to spend money we don’t have, on things we don’t need, to create impressions that won’t last, on people we don’t care about.” What do you think of that? Is Tim accurate for you or not? If not for you, think about people you know. Could this perhaps apply to them? Is our environment failing to deliver fulfilling lives?
How can we take back control? I am assuming that you would like a happier life? So what can you do to be happier? Because ultimately it is up to you, isn’t it? You are the director of your life. You are the person that should take responsibility and control over your destiny.
So how do we do this? What are some things we can do to create a happier life for ourselves? On the Action for Happiness website they say “people and organisations need to behave in a way that improves well being (for their own and others).”
Each of us can help in small ways. It is the small things that make big things happen. David Cameron said before he was the Prime Minister of the UK, “It’s time we admitted that there is more to life than money, and it’s time we focused not just on the GDP but on GWB – general well-being.
Well-being can’t be measured by money or traded in markets. It’s about the quality of our culture, the beauty of our surroundings and, above all, the strength of our relationships.”
So perhaps if you can answer these questions:
- Overall, how satisfied are you with your life?
- Overall, how happy did you feel yesterday?
- Overall, how anxious did you feel yesterday?
- Overall, to what extent are the things you do in your life are worthwhile?
What can we do as people, organisations not just to create happiness in ourselves but spread happiness?
We can focus on being happy. As Groucho Marx said “I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”
So perhaps the cause of happiness is our view of the world, our view of our environment, our view of what is happening. So maybe, just maybe, the trick is not to wait to be happy, not to wait for someone to make you happy, not to wait for something to happen to be happy, just be happy. Perhaps it could be that easy. So close your eyes now, keep them closed for about 30 seconds, no peeking, and when you open your eyes, you have a new view, a new outlook and a new attitude. That is you have now chosen to be happy just because you can.
“Be an inspiration to yourself and
you will be an inspiration to others.”