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Happiness and Optimism

Updated on December 17, 2012

Finding the Happiness Factor

Self Help and the search for Happiness.

“Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances.” — Benjamin Franklin

We all want to be happy, but then life happens. Between the news, the economy, the negative talk of others, our own regrets, the problems that confound us,our own anxieties, the daily grind, not having enough time to relax, ... well you get the idea.

The list is long and gets in the way of our smiles, and peace of mind, contentment, our abiitity to relax and to just feel happy. Some of us are just having a bad day, a bad week or a bad couple of years. So how do we change our tune and find the that happiness factor?

Happy Thoughts

Self Help Tips

Here are some self help tips and strategies that might help to make you more contented and satisfied.

All around us bad news in the world is on the front page. In our personal lives we have real life issues that trouble us, and overwhelm us. Trying to deal with financial stresses, illnesses, relationship issues, and a myriad of personal hardships that make life difficult and create feelings of helplessness and hopelessness add to the negativity we may be feeling. We have all been there and we will all be there again, because life smacks us around. But there are things you can do with the tools you have within you. There are ways we can transform our thoughts on a daily basis that help to change our attitude that will help us go the distance. You can change your internal messages just a bit to think, behave and react differently. Believe it or not, it is the littlest of differences that can make the biggest of changes.

So let’s start by making a list of a few things that you wouldn’t change for the world. People and pets who are important to you, your talents, and other intrinsic gifts you possess can be on this list. You can also include material possessions that you are just so happy you have. It can be a book you read, food you just ate, clothes you like, etc. It can be a day that is a very special part of your memory, it can be a dream you want to achieve, or something that makes you proud. The list can be small or large, they can be trivial or gigantic, they can be special or ordinary. It’s is not what is on the list that is important. The most important thing you can do with the list is look it over everyday and take the time to appreciate what you value most. You can add to it every day, if you want, or keep using your same list. Take these small and big pleasures and joys and make them a priority of your thoughts for as many times in the day as you can. It takes a purposefulness and an intention to stay positive. Try it and let me know in the comments below if you started to feel even a little more positive about things after you made this list.

The difference between people who are happy and those who are not is basically about perception. Happy people try to look at the brighter side of things, even when they don’t go right. Happy people are not looking for perfection in a day, they tend to take what is and make the best of it. The best of “the positive thinkers” try to look for the good opportunities even in the negative situations. This can be hard to do, but the best way to start this way of thinking is with hope.

Hope is a Circle that Leads to Positive Thoughts

What is hope? Hope is a virtue we can embody. Hope is the belief that there will be a better tomorrow. Hope is today, and it is the future. It knows no boundaries or limitations. Hope can be everywhere and anywhere at any time. Hope helps us feel that something better will come. Hope is life, it is the sun, it is a power that gives us strength to keep going. Hope can take away distress and inspire us to forge ahead. Hope is universal, it has no barriers or obstacles. Hope exists for anyone who opens their arms and hearts and mind to its acceptance. Hope helps us continue where we might otherwise give up. Hope exists across time and space, around the globe and in our hearts. Hope is inspiration, bravery and encouragement.

Where there is life, there is hope. Where there is hope, there is belief. Where there is belief there is faith. Where there is faith, there is trust. Where there is trust, there is security. Where there is security, there is strength. Where there is strength, there is a way. Where there is a way, there is hope. Hope is a circle, a continuation of life, a way to think positive and a belief that positive things will come. Start your circle of hope with all the things that are good in your life. Continue your circle with the hope that all other things can and will be better in time.

Sometimes we need to remind ourselves of the treasures we have today. You have the ability to realize the positives that you possess right now. This realization can empower you and help to change your thinking, your attitude, and beliefs. Think positive and your actions will inevitably follow your thoughts. This is power. Keep your power, and the happiness you seek will be yours.

Happiness Exists for Everyone Who Seeks It

Throughout the rest of our days, we will ave hdifficult and turbulent times. We will also have enjoyable and wonderful times. In between this mix, give yourself the gifts of the things you value, the gift of hope, the power of self realization, your ability to make good choices, resilience, your energy within, and the treasure of who you are and what you can really do. Intentional happiness is not elusive, it exists for everyone who seeks it and works at it.

People, who by nature, are more contented, tend also to be healthier. Try to avoid the “why me” feelings. Studies show people who do not view themselves as victims had a better immune system. Resilience, the ability to bounce back from adversity is a strong ally to have to attain happiness and a positive attitude.

“Happiness consists more in the small conveniences of pleasures that occur every day, than in great pieces of good fortune that happen but seldom to a man in the course of his life.” ~ Ben Franklin

Stay Away From Negative People

Try to avoid overwhelming yourself, and when this does happen seek help from a friend, a family member, or a professional counselor. Be aware of your fears and keep them at bay as best you can, so that you have room in your mind for good thoughts. Stay away from negative people. Life is too short to be around those who want to drag you down with them. Make good choices for yourself. Please yourself first, and don’t be afraid to say no!

Appreciate the Little Things

Try meditation. It will slow your thoughts down and turn your internal energy, back towards yourself. Meditation is believed to help change thought patterns and helps focus your attention where you need it most. People who meditate have showed in brain scans the same region of similarity to the brain scans of happy people. With meditation, people gain a better control over their mind, and this has shown a better ability to think positive. A simple way to start today is to, breathe rhythmically and deeply with a mantra, a simple word that you repeat to relieve your mind of those busy thoughts.

Another good exercise is to stop and take a few moments everyday to appreciate the everyday things you take for granted. Smell a flower, notice a picture, admire a person. Marvel at architecture, find the new in something old, and the old in something new. Be awed by nature. Get your mind thinking in a different way. Enjoy the company of someone special, watch a child, spend time with a pet. Help those thoughts that de-energize you, to re-energize you. And while you are at it, take the time to appreciate something very valuable … YOU!


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    • profile image

      Julia 4 years ago

      Hi this is so true I been hearing negtive voices saying mean things about me but Im going to make that list u told everyone to make and try to make my self more happier in life :)

    • amillar profile image

      amillar 6 years ago from Scotland, UK

      Up, awesome and useful. Health and happiness are the greatest possessions of all.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 6 years ago from Sunny Florida

      toknowinfo, excellent advice and tips. It is so important to stay positive. Voted up and beautiful. I am sure this will help someone out there who is wavering on that wall between positive and negative.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 6 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      I like this philosophy. It makes us responsible for our own state of mind. "We become what we think about". Very uplifting.

    • heart4theword profile image

      heart4theword 7 years ago from hub

      Some positively, encouraging words!

    • onceuponatime66 profile image

      Jackie Paulson 7 years ago from USA IL

      I really like this hub-I hate this "getting older" thing. I am in my 40's now and my body just is not liking it. LOL

    • zionsphere profile image

      zionsphere 7 years ago from Oregon

      Love this hub! Thanks for sharing!

    • frogyfish profile image

      frogyfish 7 years ago from Central United States of America

      "give yourself the gifts of the things you value"...that wraps it all up so beautifully! Thank you!

    • profile image

      Justsilvie 7 years ago

      Thanks for a wonderful Hub, Just what the doctor ordered for today! *smile*

    • Vladimir Uhri profile image

      Vladimir Uhri 7 years ago from HubPages, FB

      Thank you. Being positive is the key.

    • pmccray profile image

      pmccray 7 years ago from Utah

      Too many forget that we're all responsible for our own happiness. I make a concerted effort every morning to start thanking God that I awake every morning. Your list suggestion is spot on if we appreciate the small things the rest is easy. Excellent subject matter, voted up, marked useful, awesome and shared.

    • profile image

      i4u 7 years ago

      Clearly seeks out the good tips!

      Good writing as well.

      Wonderful approach towards life from this hub indeed.

    • Scarlett My Dear profile image

      Scarlett My Dear 7 years ago from Missouri

      ~Happy people are not looking for perfection in a day, they tend to take what is and make the best of it.~

      So true. Love your ideas about creating more happiness and positive thinking in your life! The act of putting pen to paper in a gratitude journal or something like it, is an excellent way to remind yourself of those things you are thankful for.

      I've kept a journal for each of my kids for years. They helped me keep things in perspective when times were rough, reminded me why I was there in the first place, helped me work out those negative feelings that we all experience and made me happier with my decisions.

    • pennyofheaven profile image

      pennyofheaven 7 years ago from New Zealand

      Awesome! Thanks!

    • Str8up Hookups profile image

      Str8up Hookups 7 years ago

      Hub Up!!

      Well written hub with very useful info.


    • fucsia profile image

      fucsia 7 years ago

      I am totally agree.

      It is not from a long time that I realized that happiness is our responsibility. I love to read Hub as this: they help me to be happy!



    • DavePrice profile image

      DavePrice 7 years ago from Sugar Grove, Ill

      Seems some people are just determined to be miserable, and just as determined to bring us down with them. We can never have enough encouragement to be positive, and I thank you for yours.

    • rotl profile image

      rotl 7 years ago from Florida

      Just what I needed... I've been a bit negative lately so this was very timely. While there is a lot of good stuff in your hub to chew on, I certainly agree with staying away from negative people!

    • NCBIer profile image

      NCBIer 7 years ago

      Great hub! The power of positive thinking really knows no bounds, yet always seems to get lost in the daily grind. Thank you for the reminder.

    • kashmir56 profile image

      Thomas Silvia 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      A Awesome beautiful hub! A very positive written hub with great self help advice to put more positive thinking in your life which will reward you with a much happier life.

      Thumbs up and i have bookmark this hub!!!

    • carrie450 profile image

      carrie450 7 years ago from Winnipeg, Canada

      I am a firm believer in positive thinking and being Grateful for everything I have. A beautifully written hub toknowinfo, thanks

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 7 years ago

      Terrific piece of writing that I honestly feel I want to re-read and study. Rated up and awesome.

    • clark farley profile image

      clark farley 7 years ago

      Totally agree.

      Whats that old saying, "the world is a feeling, you are responsible for how you feel" ?

      All great points, I will get a little more radical and suggest that not only should you not tolerate negative people who would feed off your energy, but stay away from all negative sources.

      My favorite of these "avoidables" is all TV/internet news and current events. The main goal of the way these shows are packaged is to get you to react. Good, bad, they don't care as long as you watch.

      Why expose yourself to something that is taking your energy, not helping you re-new it.

      Good hubation.