What is happiness? Some would argue that having access to food, drink, companionship is what makes someone happy. Some are happy by virtue of having access to wealth which makes the aforementioned readily available. Some gain happiness from being successful in whatever endeavors they undertake, irrespective of whatever their motivation. In essence, everyone has their own basis for defining happiness. Who are we to even begin a judgment on whether they are right or not. Bottom line is being happy.
But, I think it’s a bit more than that. Happiness is also about making sure your surroundings are happy. Sure, you can isolate yourself from all that mess, but sooner or later you will see that there’s only so far you can run before the reality of living in a social, well-connected, interdependent world bites you. But, I digress. So, then what is happiness? Is it dependent on others appearing happy? Is it just wealth? Is it just success? Being content?
I don’t know. But, that admitted, I can now say that there is one underlying factor I see in all people who are happy – they live, and I mean really live life without regrets. It’s really not easier said than done. We make mistakes all the time, but only the weak let themselves fall behind and repent all their life instead of picking up and making sure the mistake(s) of their life work for them in the long term. So that’s it – live life like you have no regrets and everything that makes you happy will casually follow.
Here’s how I keep myself happy, and everyone knows I am always cheerful and optimistic –
1. Be dreamy; imagine the good that has yet to come in your life.
2. Stop worrying and just do it. If something worries me a lot, be it whether injustice towards me or someone else, I try my best to take action at the right time.
3. Never say no to yourself.
4. Do unto others the way you would have them do to you. This is not just a biblical verse. It’s one of the first step towards being human. Is your selfish behavior making life worse for someone else? You will never be happy because guilt is subliminal and goes with you.
5. Keep yourself enlightened; Never stop learning. I could learn something new everyday and still know only so much about this wonderful world.
6. Don’t let negative energies or thoughts build up. This one is really hard to adhere to, and I fail often. Maybe that’s why it’s so hard to be 100% happy! And no, this doesn’t fully conflict with being optimistic. You could be largely optimistic and still have negative ideas about something in your life.
7. Don’t let others rule over your life. The only person in control of your life should be you and a very very small group of really close family members. Everyone else doesn’t matter.
8. Be loyal to people you care about.
9. Don’t lie. This is easier done than said, actually.
10. Do whatever it takes to keep the important people in your life happy. If they’re unhappy, you’ll never be happy.
11. Money is immaterial. It’s all about your mind. If you are smart, money will come, if not now, then very soon.
12. Always always think about changing the world for the better with your actions. Everyone is capable of doing so. Just smiling at that person in the train could make their day better and lead them to do something nice for someone else.
13. Be largely immune to selfish thoughts. Avoid jealousy. If you’re happy you’d be more worried about making sure that other jealous people don’t infect you with negative vibes.
14. Travel whenever you get the chance. Embrace change in surroundings.
I think this is it. This is how I stay happy and continue loving my life.
You can, too!
PS: Plato was a genius. If you’re really interested in understanding humans around you on a more philosophical level, you owe it to yourself to read the Republic. I will do so soon, too.