Thursday, May 15, 2014

What makes you happy?

I was having a little think earlier about what sort of things make me happy - procrastination of getting out of bed after my exams has sort of led to this. It seems to be a philosophy or feeling that I can't always seem to completely grasp in all its glory.

At first I was questioning what really defines the word "happy". Maybe it is that fuzzy feeling in your stomach when you see someone you like, maybe it's the endless laughter over a few drinks with friends, or maybe it's the feeling of delving so far into a book that you find it impossible to get out.

No matter what makes you happy, there is no denying that feeling content with life has no comparable feeling. Being able to sit back at the end of the day and just let out a sigh realising things might just be falling into place is no better end to a day.

Obviously this isn't always the case. Something you might be finding hard to deal with may be playing on your mind, there may be a lot of exam stress, or maybe someone in your life is just really getting you down.

It is at times like these where picking up a pen and a piece of paper and making a list of all the things that make you happy can work an absolute treat. Then embrace those things; bring more of them into your life, or even go and find something completely new that makes you happy.

I recently did this as part of an exercise I was recommended a few years ago. I discovered that I had three top things that make me really happy.

1. My friends
2. Writing
3. Seeing my family happy and proud

I have a fantastic set of friends who, no matter how long I have known them, have been there for me from day one. Writing is always a great outlet for any feeling I have, whether it be through here on my blog or through interpreting it into the novel I am writing. Making my family proud has always been my number one priority, even though I was a hellish teenager. So knowing that they are happy and proud of what I am doing can always put a smile on my face.

Figuring out how to balance my not-so-good days out with a helping of happiness was quite difficult at first. There are many things going on which are completely out of my control and I found that I felt helpless a lot of the time. So to balance that out I would pour my feelings into some writing, or go out to see a friend, or even just give my mum a quick call. 

It definitely takes some getting used to; I know how awful a down day can really be. But I have been using this little technique for a while now and even writing things down that make me happy can really have a positive effect.

When times get tough, come back to that list. Go through it and do a little bit of everything; even a little smile from a friend can brighten up any crappy day. 

So I want to know, what sort of things make you happy?