Happiness is a recurring theme in people’s daily lives. Many think that one should look for it by finding new places and new people, and they may invest a lot of time in doing so…

The questions we should ask ourselves would be Where is happiness really? Where should I direct my life to find it? Perhaps it is closer than we think, where we least imagine it.

In this article we will see some useful indications to stop looking elsewhere for what is in ourselves. In fact, we’ll talk about how to be happy with yourself .

What is happiness?

Happiness can be understood in several ways; it is a subjective matter, and it depends to a great extent on each one of us, on the way we understand the concept of happiness.

So, how do you be happy with yourself? We can agree that happiness comes when we perform activities that generate a sense of gratification , or when we get some reward (material or not).

Sharing moments with our loved ones, practicing our favorite sport, listening to a symphony, are things that can generate an indescribable feeling of happiness. This is because these actions make our brain secrete some substances in charge of giving us these sensations, the so-called happiness hormones (endorphin, serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin).

When we experience the happiness generated by such activities our reward system is activated so that we seek more of that happiness through the same activities . Thus, it becomes clear that happiness depends to a great extent on each person’s particular reward system, on how we have “configured” it.

Tips for being happy with yourself

Let us now look at some recommendations for living a full and happy life, without the need to be surrounded by material things or to be the most popular of the group (elements that are beyond our control).

1. Know what motivates you

When we recognize what our true desires are, we are less likely to engage in seeking happiness in the wrong places. It is important to take time to meditate on what we really want to invest our time in .

2. Set your goals with ease

This means that you should be careful about the anxiety of reaching your goals too quickly. Remember that good things don’t always come quickly , and you’d better learn to enjoy the road. That way you will be much happier as you do things.

3. Love Yourself

Affection is a natural source of happiness, and sometimes we spend too much time looking for it in other people. The sooner we realize that we are important in our lives, the closer we come to being happy. Therefore we must cultivate good self-esteem .

You don’t need to receive praise and affection from many people when you know what you are worth and learn to appreciate yourself for it.

4. Find happiness in yourself

As we have already mentioned, you don’t have to look for happiness elsewhere. If you organize your life in the right way, you will manage to make it there, inside you; you just have to focus on seeing it. Many times it is harder for us to see the things in front of our eyes, or in this case behind them…

Our happiness lies in ourselves, in the things we like, in the enjoying the good moments focused on the here and now , avoiding the anxiety of thinking about the future or the melancholy of thinking about the past.

Let’s be happy living in the present and avoid generating irrational obsessions. If you control your thoughts, you will control your happiness.

5. Find your dreams

There’s a saying that goes, “Tie your life to a dream, and you’ll be happy. Dreams are projects that depend largely on ourselves and our desire to fulfill them.

The more we focus on the things we can do on our own and avoid placing our happiness in the hands of others, the more we will enjoy ourselves. Ideally, your happiness depends primarily on you , so it’s important to be clear about that.

6. Let the last thought of the day be positive

Before you go to sleep, every night, make sure you think of at least three positive things about your day. This habit will help us configure our mind and make it tend to give relevance to good things over bad.

At first you will do this voluntarily, but later seeing things from the positive will become an intrinsic part of your personality.

7. Make sure your goals are achievable

This point is of great importance to our happiness; if we set goals that are unattainable, then we are signing a sentence for a life of stress and anguish.

Ideally we should always make an objective assessment of the feasibility of our goals before defining them , so that we are more likely to achieve them and less likely to be frustrated.

Bibliographic references:

  • Bono, J. E.; Judge, T. A. (2003). Core self-evaluations: A review of the trait and its role in job satisfaction and job performance. European Journal of Personality. 17 (Suppl1): S5 – S18.
  • Johnson, E.A.; O’Brien, K.A. (2013). Self-compassion soothes the savage ego-threat system: Effects on negative affect, shame, rumination, & depressive symptoms. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology. 32 (9): 939 – 963.