Do you feel unhappy, but you’re not sure why? But then when you look at your life you wonder… “why don’t I feel happier?” You seem to “have it all” and yet you find yourself feeling empty, sad, hopeless. If this sounds like you, here are 3 reasons why you’re unhappy PLUS what you can do to fix it and feel happier, every day!
I used to “have it all” – a seemingly happy relationship, a stable government job, a healthy body, and all my basic needs were being met. And yet, I was unhappy. On paper, it seemed like I had all the pieces that anyone would need to feel happy. And yet, I was not happy at all.
Every morning felt like a drag. It was a hard to get out of bed. I hated my job. I felt like a hamster on a wheel, going through the motions and not really living life fully.
Through the years, I’ve done a lot of inner work to understand happiness, success, fulfillment, purpose…and understand what the building blocks are form to live a happier life.
In this post, I wanted to share with you some of the elements that I have come to understand are stopping us from living a happier life. It’s not about the stuff and the career and the relationship.
Happiness is about the state of your “inner world” – your mind and your heart.
So here are 3 reasons why you might be unhappy in your life right now, and at the end of the post, I share with you some fixes – things you can do to feel happier!
But I really want you to first through the 3 reasons why you’re unhappy so that you can understand which one(s) relate the most to you so that if you can understand the source of the problem, then it will become easier to fix it.
- Related: ARE YOU AFRAID TO BE HAPPY?
REASON # 1 | You don’t know happiness means to you
When’s the last time you thought about happiness? And I mean…reallllly thought about it?
If we don’t take the time to think about what we want, then how can we expect to create it in our lives?
We also live in a world that bases happiness on the wrong things. We see happiness as looking a certain, having a certain amount of money, having a particular career, buying more stuff. But in reality, those are just a fleeting happiness. It’s not real happiness.
So what IS happiness? And how do you find it.
Well, that’s why you’re here, aren’t you? That’s why you clicked on this blog post or follow my content: because you want to live a happier life, but you don’t know how.
And it all starts by asking yourself these questions and continuously reflecting on them:
- What is happiness?
- What does it look like on a daily basis?
- When have I experienced happiness before? What was going on? What was it about the situation that was making me happy?
This must become a constant reflection that you have so that you can deepen your understanding of happiness, what it means, and it looks like in your day-to-day life. Because you’ll realize that happiness is about the small moments.
- Related: The Secret to Living a Happier Life
REASON # 2 | You don’t have the right habits in place
Understanding what happiness means to you is the first step. But then you also have to create the habits to support and cultivate happiness on a daily basis.
Let me be more specific. For example, if you know that having a slow morning is what makes you feel happy, then you have to incorporate the following habits to make that happen:
- Go to bed at a certain time so that you can wake up early enough to have a slow morning
- Create an inspiring morning routine that makes you feel energized
- Be disciplined with your morning routine so that it can become incorporated in your daily schedule
Based on your reflection and understanding of happiness, you were able to figure out that one element that contributes to feeling happier is to have a slow morning. From there, you have to then cultivate the habits around giving yourself a slow morning so that with time, you create more and more happiness for yourself, on a daily basis.
Does that make sense?
So I want you to think about the small habits that make you feel better – a weekly pampering session; quiet time; reading a book; moving your body; spending time in nature; learning something new; spending time with friends.
And from there, you can figure out the changes you need to make in your daily habits to make space for those “happiness” habits.
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REASON # 3 | You focus on the wrong thing
As mentioned before, our society puts too much emphasis on the wrong things : buying more material things, defining “success” in a very narrow way (get married, have kids, have a career, buy a home) and that has skewed our understanding of happiness and how we assess it in our lives.
Take a moment and think about what you’re focusing on in your life right now. What are the things that you have been actively pursuing and trying to accomplish.
Perhaps you’ve been hyper focused on your career and now that you have your career, you still feel unhappy.
Or perhaps you feel unhappy because you can’t buy all the purses and shoes that you want.
Maybe you feel as though you’re not successful in the “traditional” sense of the term – you’re not married and you don’t have a clear career path… and this makes you feel unhappy.
What if our understanding and perception of happiness was wrong. What if it was all a lie (here’s a secret – what the media tells us about happiness is, in fact, a lie).
What if we shifted our perception of happiness and focused on something different? What if we focused on building memories with loved ones or with ourselves; what if we were happy and content with the status quo and found happiness with what we already have.
What if… we chose to be happy, in this moment, right now? How about THAT as a new way of living?
I’ve already enumerated what you can do to gain a better understanding of how to cultivate happiness in your life, but let me break it down for you.
If you’re unhappy, here’s how to “fix” it:
- Spend some time reflecting on happiness. Leave a section in your journal where you can constantly add your thoughts and reflections whenever they come up. Actively become curious to understand how YOU define happiness, independent of what you learned growing up, what your friends and family think, and what society and the media project.
- Become intentional with your daily habits and don’t underestimate the power of habits like journaling and meditating and moving your body. Those small habits have a cumulative and positive impact on how you will feel on a daily basis. So keep doing them, every day, even if you don’t feel like it and even if you think that it’s not having an impact. Trust that it is and keep at it.
- Work on improving your mindset. And this goes back to the first point which is to understand what happiness is, and from there, you will have to consciously choose happiness. Find the things in your life and in your self that make you feel happy. Amplify them. Experience them more fully. And be grateful for them. Once you realize that you already have some (or all) the elements in that you need in your life to feel happy, then you can start living more freely and more fully.