For me, I think making x more than that seems like the best option I've found is that with more money comes a lot more stress in my life.
I'd refer to you by name, but for now it's best I don't.
Everyone I've met thus far in my life has played a part in my story. And while some have taken up chapters, most just scribbled notes in the margins.
You are the one I want to grace all of the pages I have yet to write.
I've made no secret of the misfortunes in my life.
You expect your mid-20s to be a time for starting your life as an adult. You start a career, settle down with the one you love, and look to build a beautiful family together.
I wanted that -- more than anyone. I dreamed of being a husband and eventually a father. Unfortunately, it just wasn't my time. So instead of starting my life, I had to pick up the shattered pieces to one that was once filled with so much promise -- alone.
There are no words to describe that type of pain. It just hurts... like hell. The sun doesn't shine as brightly, life moves a little bit slower, and your heart -- it just doesn't beat the same way anymore.
There's this numbness -- to everything.
And so for the longest time, I've ventured along this broken road in hopes I would find something that would give my heart every reason to beat normally again. Pain made me fear it wouldn't, but faith led me to believe it would.
Regardless, I've journeyed. Along the way, life has pulled me in different directions, introduced me to new people, and given me a completely new perspective.
As I began to open the doors to another potential relationship, I forced myself to be extremely selective. I'm no longer 20-something looking for a girlfriend. I'm a 30-year-old man looking for a woman to build my life with.
"Settling for mediocre love isn't something I am willing to do. Not in this life anyway."
Someone to complement me, and conquer everything with -- one who will stand by my side and love me no matter where this journey takes us.
Needless to say, what I'm looking for today is a lot different than ever before.
But I don't believe in using others as a Band-Aid to a cover up a wound, either.
Sure, I get lonely at times (a lot of times, actually). But you have to reserve that spot for someone special. If you give it away freely, it loses meaning, and you'll never fully appreciate the right person when they do come along.
Time is so damn important. It's precious and should never be wasted on someone who doesn't make your heart scream. So I'm hesitant in giving it just to anyone. I love a woman's companionship, but I'm not desperate for attention. While most men find value in making themselves available to any woman that gives them the time of day, I've made myself unavailable to most. Unorthodox, yes... but I value quality over quantity.
As for the ones who have gotten my time? Some have been kind, others not so much -- yet none have ever made my heart beat the way it once did.
I guess I expect to look at someone and just want every piece of them in my life. Their mind, body and soul... their hopes, dreams and fears.
I've thought at times, "Maybe it's me. Maybe I just don't have the emotional capacity to feel that strongly for someone again."
You start to believe that pain sort of scars you and that everything you're looking for is unrealistic, especially when you're part of a generation whose dating habits consist of swiping on a screen.
Do I find that disappointing? For sure.
But settling for mediocre love isn't something I am willing to do. Not in this life anyway.
So willingly, I've walked alone. In hopes that one day I'll take a glance at someone and feel that fire burn violently inside me once again. Someone whose hand I'll grab and march together with toward the moon.
As the years have passed, I've focused on bettering myself, building a strong career that will serve as the foundation for the life I wish to give my family, mastering my craft as a writer, but more importantly, rebuilding a part of myself that was once lost.
And I've lived, hoping one day, someday, something magnificent would happen; something that would make sense of everything I've been through.
Time has passed, but I've never lost faith.
And sure enough, I glanced up to notice something more magnificent than I could have ever dreamed.
I laid eyes on you, and nothing in my life has been the same since.
You were draped in this beautiful outfit that contoured your body like a glove. And your hair, it fell so elegantly on your shoulders. Everything around you was black and white, and you shined in color.
It was magical. In an instant, you changed my life.
That feeling I prayed about just sort of happened. It's that feeling we all get once in our life -- if we're lucky. And on that day, I guess luck was on my side.
You were this different kind of beautiful, unlike anything I had ever seen. When you smiled and looked my way -- I can't even explain what that did to me.
You made my heart beat in a crazy way, like never before.
It was like my eyes locked onto a soul that I waited years to find.
I felt something so deep within me, and I immediately knew that this broken road filled with pain and uncertainty led me to you.
And while I didn't know how or even why at that point, I knew I had to clear space in my mind for you to stay. In whichever capacity destiny had planned.
But I knew I would have to let you go until destiny allowed us to meet again.
I drove home that evening with this overwhelming desire to learn everything about you.
I wasn't sure if or when I'd see you again, but I was determined to find a way.
Of course, life is never that simple. Circumstances have prevented me from expressing my true feelings for you. But life teaches us that the greatest things are worth waiting for, right?
"You were this different kind of beautiful, unlike anything I had ever seen. In an instant, you changed my life."
Somehow I knew that it would take time and patience; both of which I already knew you were worth. And both of which I was prepared to give.
So I waited.
I spent months uncovering bits and pieces of you, in an ever-so-subtle way. Naturally, you've shared. And slowly but surely, two people, strangers in the not-so-distant past, became connected in this crazy world.
You've occupied my thoughts, been inspiration behind my words, and have given me hope to believe that, one day, I'll love again -- deeper than I have ever loved before.
Even if fate has a different plan for us.
And I need you to understand how important that it is to me.
I think so highly of you. I admire your drive, your passion and your dedication to everything that you love. I adore your innocence and commend the respect you have for yourself. But what captures my attention more than anything else is your simplicity.
You're such a beautiful person.
Behind everything the eye can see, behind all the glitz and the glamour, is a woman with worries and fears. Someone who loves and desires to be loved in return.
So carefully I've listened to everything you've shared with me. And believe me, I've remembered it all.
And I believe so deeply in those dreams of yours. So much, in fact, that I dream even bigger for you.
You're something real. And I'm grateful that you've trusted me enough to give me even the smallest glimpse inside your world.
I'm attracted to everything you've exposed me to.
Those big, beautiful eyes; so captivating.
Your laugh; innocent enough to bring a smile to the angriest of people.
That walk; striking and canny.
Your voice; how it giggles when we speak.
Your intelligence; and how you try to impress me with all you know.
But what I adore the most, what draws me in more than anything else, is that incredible smile.
My God, you take my breath away.
I talk about you to everyone. Like you're poetry to a world still learning the alphabet. And if I had one wish, I'd allow you to see how beautiful you are through my eyes.
Hearing your name or seeing it pop up on my iPhone brings this excitement. A feeling I deliberately waited for; and at times, feared I would never feel again.
So I savor every moment of this feeling because I've learned in my life how quickly things can change.
But I've refrained from sharing any of this with you -- by design.
Sure, I'm certain you're aware of my interest, I've made it rather obvious. But what I actually feel for you I've kept a deep secret -- until now, of course.
Why did I decide to put this out there?
Because I wanted the entire world to know how amazing I think you are. Sure, there are countless men who I'm certain appreciate your obvious outer beauty. But I cannot imagine there being another man in this world who sees your inner beauty the way I do.
It pains me to see you be treated any less than amazing.
I can only hope you give your heart to the person who wants to watch you fly.
"You're poetry to a world still learning the alphabet. And if I had one wish, I'd allow you to see how beautiful you are through my eyes."
I'm aware of what stands in my way, so purposefully, I've kept a safe distance. I've listened and observed, as any man should. But I've refused to be just another who comes along saying you deserve better, telling you how beautiful you are, all while promising you the world.
Truthfully speaking, I don't have a world to promise you. Just my company to explore it with.
What I can give you, though, is a piece of your soul that you never knew was missing and every reason to never stop smiling.
I've allowed my actions to speak louder than any word could. All in hopes that it becomes clear to you there's a man out there who just wants one thing: to make you happy.
Believe me, there's no time too long that will keep me from showing you what you truly deserve... even if that's my only purpose in your life.
If you find interest in me, I'd be honored. And if you don't, that's OK, too.
I believe in energy. And I believe that we're gravitated toward those whose energies we're meant to share. Clearly, I feel yours. And I don't think I met you just to meet you.
That's always been reason enough for me to entertain the idea of there one day being a "you and me."
Maybe this story has more chapters -- or maybe this is the end. Either way, there's something you should know.
You've changed my life.
In an instant, you unknowingly touched my heart, grabbed a piece of my soul, directed it at you, and gave me every reason to never look back.
In perfect harmony, I've released the deepest of my emotions in the smallest of doses.
But this... this is me opening up in ways I never have before.
I wish I could explain how it all happened, but I can't.
It just happened, exactly the way they describe in books and movies. The only difference is that this is real.
Just you and me. And a beautiful story that's waiting to be written.
I wasn't looking for you; you kind of just appeared.
And I don't know if it makes me believe in coincidence, fate or sheer blind luck, but it definitely makes me believe in something.
You've made me feel what pain and heartache once threatened to take away. So for that, I'm thankful. And that has always been reason enough to pursue you in ways I have never pursued a woman: with deliberate care and a subtle persistence.
And while I may have the attention of people from all over the world, it's only yours that I want.
So for now, I'll watch you from a distance and continue to be your biggest fan.
But trust me, I'll come for you, when the time is right, to uncover everything.
Your hopes, your dreams, your biggest fears. What makes you laugh and what makes you cry.
And I'll leave more than flowers on your doorstep or kisses on your forehead. I'll leave my fingerprints on your soul and pull you close enough to touch your heart.
All so I can wipe away your tears and wash away the insecurities that have been left by those who have failed to love you correctly.
Because like a crisp, blue summer sky, you're the beautiful sight I want to get lost in day after day after day.
It's the feeling of truly enjoying your life, and the desire to make the very best of it. Happiness is the "secret sauce" that can help us be and do our best.
It seems hard to believe, but we've been together for almost six months now. That's not very long in the grand scheme of things, but it's long enough for me to know how much I love you. I remember (but only vaguely now!) how my life was before I met you and I never want to go back to that dreary existence again. That was when I had nothing much to look forward to except a pizza delivery and a rented movie on Saturday night, nothing much to get up for in the morning except a day at work. Having had my heart broken twice already, I was becoming something of a hermit; sure I never wanted to get involved with anyone again. I was to the point where I believed that the "happily ever after" kind of love was only found in fiction and in fairy tales--but then I met you.
Thank goodness the substitute mailman (or is it "letter carrier" now?) got our apartment numbers mixed up and I got a chance to play Mr. Speedy Delivery. The mutual attraction we felt for each other that day has changed my life forever. It was almost too much to hope for (because I have such strong opinions about everything), but we even have the same views on the war and the economy. We're never at a loss for words or things to talk about--that is, when our lips are free to speak! Now I believe in love again, because I believe in you. And I function at warp speed now because--it thrills me to say it--you actually believe in me!
Leah, you've brought me so much happiness and joy that I can scarcely contain it all. I'm sure beams of light radiate from me wherever I go. I noticed a few raised eyebrows at work when I started coming in bright and early (on time, every time!), smiling and energized, humming some love song I heard on the radio while driving in. A couple of the guys wanted to know what's up with me, but they don't understand I am filled with secrets that cannot be shared or even expressed in words. So I just told them that I'm seeing someone and it's the real thing this time.
It's very strange because, even when we're apart, I feel that I'm still with you. I remember what it's like to hold you, to kiss you, to make love to you, as those delicious sensations never really leave me. We respond to each other so naturally and completely I believe the gods must have created us to complete each other's existence. Ours is a union that reaches beyond the mere physical into mystical planes that take my breath away. You are part of my very being now and I could never be complete or whole without you. Tell me I will never again have to return to that mundane existence I knew before I met you!
This morning I woke at dawn, still wrapped in the memory of last night, repeating over and over that line from that old Hollies' song: "Sometimes, all I need is the air that I breathe and to love you." I know what that means now because I know how that feels now. Leah, tell me we can always be together! Tell me all we need is one apartment key!
I love you.
Do you remember the first day that we met? I was rushing to calculus, and I dropped my calculator. When I got to class and realized that it was gone, I was devastated. Though I had written my name and number on the inside, I didn't really think anyone would return it. When you called later that day, I was pleasantly surprised. That was the beginning of a beautiful friendship, and of so much more. That same honesty, that same candid nature that I felt in you from the very beginning has made getting to know you the best thing that has ever happened to me. At that time, I was at a point in my life where my faith in humanity was pretty low. You helped me to see the goodness that can still be found in people, and I will be forever grateful for your influence in my life.
You have such a great attitude, Jenn--your world is full of rainbows and sunbursts. You're gentle and kind. I love the awe and reverence that you feel for nature--like it's a part of you, and you're a part of it. You have such an appreciation for little things that most people wouldn't even notice--butterfly wings and ladybug spots, the scent of myriad wildflowers, the morning dew on tiny blades of mountain grass.
You're so smart--even if you don't like calculus. The world is an infinite puzzle that you delight in trying to solve. I've never met anyone that I could talk to so easily, about anything and everything. I trust you with things I've never shared with another soul, and I know that you keep them close to your heart.
Before I met you, I couldn't imagine living my life with just one person. Now, I can't imagine my life without you--the idea of one day without you is painful to think about! Before I knew you, "forever" was something I had heard about, but something I couldn't fathom. Now I know that we're supposed to be together, and no matter where I am, as long as I'm with you, that's where I want to be. You are my life, my heart, my soul. Because of you in my world, in my arms, I have everything, and I can't imagine what I'd do without you." I promise you that I will spend the rest of my life devoted to making you happy, committed to the eternal joy we will find together.
I love you and I need you. You complete me. You're a part of every fiber of my being, and you're constantly on my mind. You must be exhausted, always running through my thoughts by day and in my dreams by night.
I've just been sitting here recalling what my life was like before I met you. Life! That's a joke. Eight months ago life meant going through the motions, monotonous movements, no joy, no sadness, no ups, and no downs--just one long stream of tedium. Then Bill invited me to a party (my stomach turns over when I remember how I almost said no!). And there you were--beautiful, happy, intelligent and incredible. Suddenly, I came alive--and I've been alive ever since.
It happened that very first night--I fell in love with you. How do I know? Because the feeling never left me and it has grown ever since. I think it always will. The lights went on. Instantly, life was exciting; colors seemed brighter; songs crisper; tastes more enjoyable. I ceased walking and began leaping. I realized that there is a whole wonderful world ready to explore--with the right person.
With you, I am at ease. I don't have to try so hard to talk about movies or music or politics or sports--or our favorite subjects: horseback riding and chess (who would have thought I could find someone with those interests in common?). I love being with you when we split a caramel sundae, stroll the park hand-in-hand without having to force a conversation, and cuddle up in front of the TV. Simple pleasures. I'm content and happy when I am with you.
I love you. From the depths of my heart, I love you to an extent that I never thought possible, and I know I always will. I cannot imagine life without you now. I want my life to be your life. I want to spend every minute of every day with you. I want to experience all that life has to offer--the good and the bad--with you at my side. I want to grow up and grow old with you. I want to hold you in my arms and never let you go. I want to feel the warmth of your kiss and whisper words of love into your ear. You are all that is good and beautiful; you satisfy all the longing that was in me--body and soul. Tell me I will never again be relegated to a colorless, mundane world.
As I sit here in the quiet of my room trying to compose this letter and express feelings that poets have struggled to say, I am reminded of lyrics that might say it best: "Who knows how long I've loved you? You know I love you still. Will I wait a lonely lifetime? If you promise to, I will."
My sweetie, please don't make me wait a lonely lifetime. If you promise to, I will.
I love you.
My Sweet Emily,
Remember that day I went to the supermarket to buy pickles? But pickles were nowhere to be found. So I asked this really cute cashier if she knew where the pickles might be hiding, and she began to lead the way. She was intriguing: open and yet, somehow, mysterious. Somewhere between the frozen foods and the baby kosher dills, I fell in love. A year has passed since you led me through the grocery aisles, and I haven't given pickles a second thought since then.
My whole world has changed for the better now that you love me. When I think of you, I can't help smiling from ear to ear. (What must people be thinking when they look at me?) Because of your example, I find that I am much kinder to people. I'm happy. I'm so full of love that it is reflected in everything I do. I treat my co-workers with more thoughtfulness. I've even become a considerate driver!
I love the time we spend together. Each Sunday afternoon, I look forward to our one-on-one basketball game in the driveway--even though you win every time! I never feel more at peace than when we simply hold hands, watch the sunset, and whisper how we feel. I love listening to your voice.
I want you to know you can always depend upon my love. It is alive and true, and grows stronger each day. I promise I will always love you. I want to spend the rest of my life with you.
We are perfect for each other: our zest for life, our stubborn determination, and our looking at the world with a cockeyed sense of humor. Aren't we glad that we both enjoy onion rings with mustard, the front-row in roller-coasters, and "short" Monopoly? Then, of course, there are my peanut butter and banana sandwiches--I think you're actually starting to develop a taste for them now! Most importantly, we share love. We're good for each other in so many ways, and we always find ways to lift and encourage each other.
Cole Porter couldn't have said it any better...
You're the Nile! You're the Tow'r of Pisa,
You're the smile of the Mona Lisa!
I'm a worthless check, a total wreck, a flop!
But if baby I'm the bottom,
You're the top!
From the first moment that I saw you standing in the comedy aisle at Blockbuster, I knew that we would be together. I don't know how; I don't usually believe in that sort of thing, but somehow I knew. Maybe it was the fact that you were holding an Adam Sandler DVD in your hand (I love his movies!). Maybe it was the fact that you were wearing shorts in December. Maybe it was the way you looked at me as I walked by. I'll probably never know exactly what caused it, but I just knew that you were the one.
Ever since that day, I have been happy. I never imagined that someone could be this happy all the time and it's all because of you. You are the reason that I find myself singing those old '80s love songs in the shower. You are the reason that I sometimes get the urge to run down the street laughing. And you are the reason that I smile so often now. All I have to do is picture your face and think of our last meeting.
I enjoy so many of the things that we do together. I love talking with you, discussing current events, or just our normal days. I love taking walks with you in the mountains, having picnics, and enjoying the beauty around us. But simply watching TV together makes me content. I don't need anything except to be with you. I love you. That will never change. I am committed to us. I am committed to our future together.
I truly believe that we were meant to be together. I look forward to spending the rest of my life with you.
1.Make your own happiness a priority.
Your happiness matters. We tend to put other people's happiness before our own and make excuses for the reasons why we neglect our needs - we are too busy, too skint, too stressed out. If you don't value your own happiness then no one else will. It is entirely possible to look out for your own needs and still care about your friends and family. If you are happy, you are more likely to spread happiness and care for those around you.
Think about what makes you happy. Now what would make me delirious would be to wake late, eat cake, drink wine and spend the day sunbathing somewhere on a hot and beautiful beach. That's not realistic at this point in my life as I think my kids would have something to say about it!
But what does make me happy is writing, fresh linen, watching a good film, open fires, sauvignon blanc, walking in the woods with the dog, my chickens, a good meal with awesome friends, a lie in with my husband, dancing...
There are a LOT of things that make me happy that cost little or nothing and those things I make time for. It's easy to neglect your own desires but so important that you don't.
2. Spend time with people who make you happy
Who are the people that you enjoy spending time with? Who makes you happy, who loves, respects and appreciates you and who makes you want to be a better person? If you surround yourself with negative people then your life will be filled with negativity, and the opposite is true also, being around positive, happy people make you aspire to be positive and happy.
Sometimes we can't help whom we have to spend time with, we may have work colleagues or family members who are Debbie Downers and we have to hang out with them at times. But in our social lives it is so important to keep awesome and positive people around us, the ones who make us laugh, who are joyous to be around. Some of the people who make me happy are filthy minded, raucous and quite dark! But they are interesting and make me feel good about myself.
3. Take responsibility for your own life
This is a biggy for me, the trait I hate the most in people is refusing to take responsibility for their own lives. People who have constant excuses for their bad behaviour, who think it is always someone or something else's fault. People who say "its alright for you because..."
Own your life. Own your mistakes. Live, learn and move on. The world doesn't owe you anything; you make your own path through this world. Everyone faces hardships throughout their life and you can choose to be a martyr to your tough times or own the shit out of them and move forward as a stronger person.
4. Be yourself. Everyone else is taken
Be the best version of yourself that you can be. Be true to yourself and be proud of the person you are. It's easy to compare ourselves to others, and the fact is, there will always be someone thinner, smarter and prettier - but honestly, who cares?
Whatever part of yourself you admire the most, be *that* more. The parts you dislike about yourself, be *that* less. Be proud of your quirks and weirdness, stand tall and proud and applaud your inner awesomeness!
5. Create your own happiness
No one can change your life and make you truly happy except you. Choose positivity over negativity and smile because you can. Choose to be happy with who you are right now and allow your joy to shape your present and your future. Do the things that make you happy more often, spend time with those who bring out your smile and create your own happiness.
If you are waiting for someone else to make you happy, you may be waiting a long time.
6. Find the silver lining
When you are going through a tough time it is easy to slip into feeling defeated and that life is just too hard. We go through things in life that we think will break us. Illness, bereavement, job loss, money troubles, and it can feel like there is no way to get through these times. The truth is we are stronger than we think.
It is important to look for the silver lining even if that is only the tiniest sliver of hope. If there is no silver lining in your situation, for example the death of a loved one, then try to count your blessings and be grateful of the good things in your life.
When things are hard, and you feel down, take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that you can and will grow stronger from these hard times. Remain conscious of your blessings and victories, of all the things in your life that are right. Focus on what you have, not on what you haven’t.
7. Be kind
Be a kind person, one who is caring and thoughtful, who thinks of others and treats people with respect. Kindness breeds kindness. Its a simple one but so important.
8. Be open
Be open; share your thoughts and feelings with the people closest to you. If you are hurting then accept the hurt and allow yourself time to heal, let your loved ones in and be honest with them. A problem shared is a problem halved, the act of speaking your troubles out loud can be of as much help as any advice you may receive. Becoming a more open person can lead to real happiness.
9. Let go of the past
Our pasts define who we are and we can learn lessons from the things we have gone through, but when your past is keeping you from moving forward it becomes a problem. We have all had tough experiences but if you are reliving the pain of this experience again and again and it is affecting your present then it is time to let go.
Letting go doesn't mean forgetting what has happened or pretending it didn't happen, it means letting go of the pain and resentment that is holding you back. This is easier in some situations than others, but be honest with yourself and if something from your past is affecting your present then it may be time to talk through those issues either with a trusted friend or family member or a trained therapist.
10. Take a chance
Two years ago my husband and I took a leap of faith, we sold our home and rented a 15th century mill to push our photography business forward. It was a risk, but a calculated risk. I knew that if there was a motto to live by (other than 'If you can't sing well, sing LOUD') it was 'I'd rather regret the things I did, than the things I didn't do.' We plotted and planned, did the sums a million times and then decided to take a chance. And it was the best thing we ever did, don't get me wrong there have been some very tough times but I knew we had made the right decision.
Life is not about getting a chance; it is about taking a chance. If there is something you have always dreamed of doing, then try to make it happen. If it works you will have achieved a goal, if it doesn't you know you at least tried it and you WILL learn a lesson from it.
11. Be mindful
Live in the present, in the here and now. It is so easy to let busy lives, technology and procrastination take over our lives, but being mindful of the things around you can bring peace and happiness into your life. Take time to notice the things that are important in your life right now, experience life as it happens. Don't dwell on the past or imagine how great things could be in the future. This moment is the only thing guaranteed to you in life, we never know what the future holds so enjoy today.
12. Concentrate on the things you can control, not the things you can't
Worry and stress is a normal part of life but when your day is taken up with worrying about the things in life you cannot control it is a sign that things need to change. Worrying about things that are beyond your control is such a waste of your time and emotional energy.
Worry affects you, not the person or situation you are worrying about. If it is important to you and you can control the outcome and positively help a problem then great, if not then let it go. You have enough genuine problems to face in life without upsetting yourself with things beyond your control.
13. Face your problems and make a positive change
There's no point in burying your head in the sand, if you have a problem, you need to face it head on and make a positive change as no one is going to do it for you. The problem will not just disappear on it's own without action from you and no problem is too big to overcome. It takes acceptance from you and then a plan, no matter how small the steps, you need to do little and often and move it forward.
Some problems you will be able to overcome alone with a good old-fashioned list and a bit of hard work. Others are bigger and need support from others. There is no shame in asking for help, whether it is the help of friends, family or a professional.
14. Appreciate the things you have
Perspective. There will always be someone better off than you and someone worse off than you. Learn to appreciate the things you have, rather than worrying about the things you don't. I'm not saying we shouldn't aspire to be greater than we are now, but don't be so busy in thinking of the things that you don't have that you forget to appreciate all you do.
15. Love those around you
Appreciate and love those around you, bring joy to the people who mean the most by telling them how much they mean to you. Since my sister moved to Australia I end all our conversations with "love you" I didn't do this before she left but her moving half way around the world brought out something in me that makes me want her to know how much she means to me.
This isn't about huge grand gestures, it is about personal, meaningful acts that let your friends and family know how awesome they are. A text message, sending a photo that you think they'll find funny, a hug, a few words.
Be happy folks!
Love Sam xx
I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. There are so many things in life that make you sad, you have to be happy. You don't have to spend your time and energy trying to cheer up someone who has already.
Here’s the thing, I believe that if you are not happy you need to make some adjustments in your life. We only have one life, so we might as well be happy. Life is too short to be anything but happy.
They say money is everything, and some people get very tied up in making money. This is fine as long as you find a way to use your money to do things that make you happy. Even if you have millions of dollars, I think you are unsuccessful if you are unhappy.
Excess is ok, if it makes you happy. And also simplicity is ok, if it makes you happy. Do whatever you have to do to be happy; just don’t hurt other people in the process. We are put in this world to help others and to help ourselves; we help ourselves by being happy, by having moments of fun and connecting with others.
Ask yourself this question: Do I like the way my life is going? If your answer is no, this minute is the time to look for the things you don’t like, and fix them. Go to great lengths to fix them, as you will be happier. Life is too short to be anything but happy.
Ask yourself this other question: When was the last time I laughed out loud? If you don’t remember, Houston we have a problem. If you do, who were you with? Try to associate yourself with people that make you laugh and feel good about yourself. Why would you hang out with someone that makes you feel bad? Don’t waste your time. It is up to you to put yourself in situations where you get to laugh. Laughter is food for our soul.
Rules that have thankfully/luckily worked for me for being happy:
Like yourself. If you look in the mirror and don’t like what you see, it is up to you to change that, and change it today. You don’t like your nose? Fine, if it’s really going to bother you, go to the plastic surgeon and fit it. Wish you ran every morning? Don’t give it much thought, just get up tomorrow and run a few blocks. Try hard to fix things that you don’t like about yourself, look for help, do whatever you have to do, so that you can look in the mirror and smile from now on.
Exercise. Exercise at least five times per week, cardio for the body and spirit is almost as important as water. Even if it’s 15 minutes a day, set time aside to exercise. If you have an awesome job that does not allow time for you to exercise daily, then it’s not worth anything. Run, bike, use a treadmill, kayak, do anything cardio related, and you really will feel happier for doing so.
Treat others with respect. Nothing to add here, you know what to do and if you do it, it will make you happy. Don’ think about why or how, it’s just true.
Be grateful for existing. We are all privileged to be alive, many people don’t get the chance to live or their lives are cut short. Enjoy the ride, and know that pressure is a privilege. Feeling pressure in your job? At least you have one. Feeling pressure at home? At least you have a home. Your parents pressuring you? At least you have parents. Pressure is a privilege of a few lucky ones, you are lucky.
I believe that although having money can create stability and comfort in our lives, truly the best things in life are free. A new Ferrari is nice, but does it make you truly happy? If it does, perfect. If it does not, try looking into things that you don’t have to pay for, like a few hours in a nature area, going out of your way to help someone else. Plenty of free things to do and places to visit that will make you happy.
Get out of the big city. Cities offer a great way of life and culture, but too much time in a big city is not good for happiness. I think we really lose touch with the wonder that it is that we are all actually here and alive. Make sure you take time to get out of there once in a while, running all the time is not good; you need to slow things down and enjoy the ride.
Moderation. Life in moderation is good. Excess is ok, but know that you will have a higher price to pay for excess later on. Balance is key, not too little, not too much.
Smile. Kill people with kindness, a smile goes a long way. An honest smile and handshake, and the will to do good things are the best negotiation tools you will ever have, in any situation. Sometimes it’s easy to be wary of others and assume they are at odds with what we want. Let them know you are on their side and people really are willing to work with you to make you both get what you need.
Don’t do drugs. This may sound like juvenile or obvious advice, but drugs dampen your senses, and true senses are the windows to happiness. An occasional beer, wine, cigar, cigarette is fine, but be sure it’s for fun. The moment you need that to escape reality, you are getting in trouble.
Work hard to make enough money to live comfortably. Debt and economic anguish is a happiness killer.
Love your job. If you don’t, change jobs. Do you really want to be doing something you don’t like 40+ hours per week? That is not living, that is surviving, and that is crazy. Of course sometimes we feel we don’t have a choice, and we do need to make some sacrifices for the future. But just remember that no one knows what will happen in the future, pad yourself with some happiness in the present.
Getting stuck in traffic often is a waste of time and a happiness killer. Fix this and the quality of your life will be better. Again, sometimes we need to see things as a means to an end, but just find a way to avoid this when possible.
Connect, but not too much. Technology is great, but don’t depend on it or live your entire life through it. It’s much more invigorating and real to connect with people face to face than through a computer or iPhone. You can’t make a computer happy.
Try not to live your life alone. People need people, we are social beings and we all need interactions. Join a group with common interests, talk to your neighbors, strike up a conversation with the person behind you in line at Starbucks … do anything you want, but don’t live life alone; hard to be happy if you are always alone.
Help others. Helping others is actually helping yourself. Do good and you will immediately feel a sense of happiness.
Hug often. Hug your family and friends, hug people that you love. Not sure what it is, but a hug always feels good.
Look at your watch less frequently. When we always need to be somewhere at a certain time, life goes by too fast. I think the most important people are the ones that can be anywhere, anytime, without rushing. Although, if you set a time to meet someone, be on time, it is disrespectful to make people wait too long.
Earn things. You feel better when you earn something than when it’s given to you. Sacrifice is rewarded with more happiness in the end.
Get along with your family. Family is everything, even if they have wronged you. Try to live close to your family; that will increase the chances of spending more time with them.
Don’t hold grudges. With anyone, period. Grudges and sentiments of vengeance are happiness killers. And they really do end up hurting you more than the person they’re targeted at.
Live life with no regrets. We all mess up, and do so many times. What’s the point in regretting something that has already happened? Better to focus your energy in the future, and doing things better next time. Try to remember only the good moments from the past, leave the bad moments locked in a sealed box. Learn from them what you can, then move on. It’s a waste of time to relive past bad moments in your head.
Be a child. Have endless joy when you accomplish a goal, and bounce back from sadness easily. Keep remembering to admire and enjoy the little things in life!
Wake up in the morning wanting to live the day. If you don’t, ask yourself why not, and fix whatever is bothering you.
Find a hobby. For me, it’s tennis and golf. I can’t wait to get out on the tennis court or golf course, it makes me happy. Find activities that make you have fun, things you do that make time fly by and leave you wanting more. This is fuel for happiness.
Keep things in perspective. Next time you are in a conference room stressing and arguing with others about a number on a spreadsheet, think about millions of people that don’t have food, water or shelter. It might make the spreadsheet stress seem stupid and a waste of time. Make the best decision then let it go. Walk away from situations that stress you. Stress is a happiness killer. Say to yourself, is this matter really worth stressing for? In most cases I bet the answer will be no.
Stay away from laziness. Being active gives you energy, and energy is a catalyst for happiness. Take time to sit around in the couch, but don’t do it all the time, every day.
Don’t keep things that bother you inside. When you don’t like something, communicate it. Talk about it with the other person, or a friend, saying things helps the healing process and let you move on. Keeping them inside will either make you angry or sad, or make you explode like an atomic bomb when you finally get it all out at once.
Get out of the house. Being in the house all the time is not good, get outside, see and interact with other people, see activity, get some fresh air.
In my humble experience, I think a big factor for happiness is working in something you like. The vast majority of people I know do not like their jobs. The turning point in my life was leaving a job I did not like. That day marks the scariest day of my life, but also one of the best. I now do something that I love, something that I am passionate about, something that inspires me; and that has made a huge difference in my life. I did not know what happiness was really all about until I did something that I liked to do. Before, I had moments of happiness, mostly during week nights and weekends, but I realized that not being inspired by what I did was really holding me back from so much fulfillment. I’m glad I took the risk, thankful that it has paid off so far, and very thankful for the life that I now have, and wonderful people in my life.
I urge you to look out for your own happiness, do it now, before 30 years pass by and you realize that you only had moments of happiness, and that the rest of the time you “grinded it out and survived”. No one can do this for you, you are responsible for putting yourself in a position, and doing things to make yourself happy. Life is too short to be anything but happy.
In having said all this, I am aware that I have been a pretty lucky guy in life, I have a great family and awesome friends, and have been given good opportunities to succeed, so being happy has been relatively easy for me. I am also aware that not all people have been as lucky as I have been, but I sure hope that some of these thoughts can help others out. It is not my intention to offend anyone.
My final thought is this, time takes care of everything. No matter how bad things get, there’s always calm after the storm. Celebrate your achievements, no matter how small they are, and stay balanced during the lows in your life, as they will pass.
Life is too short to be anything but happy.
– Jorge Morera
Think exercise is something you don't have time for? when they clocked in tended to affect how they felt the rest of the day. Vaillant's response: "That the only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people." So spending money on other people makes us happier than buying stuff.