The Three Keys to Happiness

  1. Something to Do. How many times have we felt unhappy with life because we simply had too much idle time? I know it has happened in my own life. When I get bored, I get down, and I only snap out of it when I start to get busy again. The thing is, we have to recognize this pattern and stay busy to keep our mood elevated. Find a hobby. Volunteer your free time. Learn to cook. Coach youth sports. There are endless possibilities for “something to do” if we take the time to look.
  2. Something to Love. Friends and family are such an important element to our ultimate happiness. During a traveling phase at my last job I spent a number of lonely nights hundreds of miles away in a hotel room on business. I was in foreign surroundings, working in a job I didn’t particularly like, in an industry I didn’t believe in (credit/financial services). The one source of inspiration to get through those nights was my family. Even though my career situation has since improved, I still think of my wife and kids when I get down and can’t help but smile. If you are single, you may have a best friend that always knows just how to pick you up, or make you laugh when you want to cry. Pets can even be an incredible source of companionship, there to greet you at the end of a long day. I’ve had pets most of my life and marvel at their willingness to love us unconditionally.
  3. Something to Hope For. Everyone should have something to hope for. Something that drives them towards a goal. It’s been said that if you aim for nothing, you’ll hit it every time. Have something to aim for; a dream that you hold close and never let completely out of sight. When people lose hope they get complacent, and complacency often leads to a poor attitude. This self-perpetuating cycle of negativity can lead to serious depression, and ultimately harm cherished relationships. I know, I’ve been in a rut myself and I lost sight of the dreams I once held close. But all hope is never lost, you just may have to work a little harder temporarily to catch up and see those dreams around the next corner again.

“The only difference in a rut and a grave is six feet.” If you find yourself in a rut, stop digging. Start moving in the direction of your dreams and things will begin to improve. If your goal is debt freedom, stop charging to your credit cards and start paying all you can pay on outstanding debts. Do not be overwhelmed by the distance to the finish line. If your goal is to lose weight, do not focus on how far you are from your goal weight. Instead, take it one day, one meal, one bite, one workout at a time and begin to move in the direction of your dreams.

The bottom line is we are responsible for our own happiness. Government programs, promises from elected officials, and pats on the back from bosses may offer temporary mood boosts, but ultimately happiness is a self-induced state of mind. Be responsible for your own happiness.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, June 19th, 2008 at 6:51 am and is filed under Happiness. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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14 responses about “The Three Keys to Happiness”

  1. Elly said:

    I’m not in a very good stage of my life right now. All you wrote seem so true.

  2. David Leonhardt happiness said:

    Actually, there is another difference between a rut and a graveyard. In a rut, you are not covered by earth, so you can choose to get out. Try doing that in a graveyard!

  3. javajeanelaine said:

    Most of your advice seems pretty elementary.

  4. HealthNut said:

    I was just discussing this with a few friends. Having something to do, love and hope for is essential. Without dreams, goals and interaction, life becomes a meaningless abyss. Sometimes the simplest advice is the stuff we forget most often and will make the biggest difference in our lives.

  5. Frank said:

    thanks for the free info Its true what u say about happiness n how u must control it in order for it to happen I am really going to try to reach that goal Only thing holding me back is trying to find a good job w a felony on my record Wish me luck

  6. hathor_amor said:

    I never thought I would be seeking self-help on the internet. I always thought of myself as a “pick yourself up by the bootstraps” type. But then my brother died and everything I thought I knew about myself changed. This information may be basic, but it is heaven sent for someone in my shoes, who has no clue how this happened to their life or how to even begin to fix it. Thank you so much for the free inspiration.

  7. Anthony Martina said:

    I also believe that always speaking the truth helps a lot. Having nothing to worry about in a sense.

  8. kimber said:

    What do you do when you get up every morning and just wait for night to fall so you can end that day and do it all again..You are at a place where you should just let go of things and move on and you just can’t..You wonder about the future yet its depressing to think about it.. You have more than most people will ever aquire but you seek the past more.. What to do???

  9. Debbie @ Happy Maker said:

    Boy you hit that one good: something to do, something to love and something to hope for.
    With those 3 things anyone can have a full life. and it will keep you out of a rut.

  10. Daniel said:

    I’ve read a lot of self help stuff through my life, I gave it up a while ago but have recently started to look at it again. Now I’m starting to remember why I gave it up in the first place. Most are just trying to sell you something and even those that don’t like this site start every article like it’s a commercial trying to trick you into something. Have you ever felt alone? Ever felt like you didn’t measure up? Well so have I, insert awesome advice and life story here. This is standard advertising technique for messing with your subconscious, make a statement the consumer agrees with before you make your pitch. Frankly it’s starting to get more than a little annoying, I’m getting sick of greed and self-interest controlling everything in the world around me. Where peoples misery becomes nothing more than another opportunity to be exploited for profit or popularity. Where every law and regulation is designed to keep the weak down and make the strong stronger. The world we live in is a sinking ship, unfortunately there is no way to get off. All you can do is hide in an illusion of happiness and contentment of your own making and refuse to ever look beyond it else it shatters.

  11. Dr Greg Cynamon said:

    A lot of valuable ideas are discussed here..thanks for this post..this is a new learning for me.

    My own way/standard for happiness includes:
    1. No enemies – just living life that is more friendly, loving, and with respect with other people and nature.

    2. Living live thinking that there are always good things ahead.

    Thanks for this post. I also like the works of Dr Greg Cynamon-Unlocking the Bible’s Secrets to Happiness'”

  12. bible happiness said:

    Many thanks for sharing these interesting tips and ideas about to find happiness.Bible secrets are a source of getting happiness.

  13. Kirstie hayes said:

    Hi I am going though a very bad point in my life. I don’t know who I am or what I want to be. Or even if every thing I have got I want. It’s been like this for a few years, but one day a few weeks again I was thinking about thing when I realised I’ve been living my life in a buble. I hate my job, I was in a loveless relationship and only I had the power to change it. When I found this Website it start to help me and make we realise what I wanted and how to change my life. I’m only at the start of trasforming my life but your wedsite is helpping so much. So thank you for helping me change my life

  14. Los 3 elementos básicos de la felicidad said:

    […] en: The Three Keys to Happiness, de […]

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