Have you ever made a list of things that make you happy? Have you ever looked at this list, sighed and said “ only if ……would happen then I would be so happy”? Have you ever seen a genuine happy person and thought to yourself how could they be happy all the time and called them lucky? If you answered yes, then good news you don’t have to wait any more for happiness to knock on your door. Happiness is all around you, you just need a teeny, tiny tool to see it. That tool is called reflection.
The definition of reflection is serious thought or consideration.
How will reflection help you to find happiness?
If you are one of those people, who considers themselves as not so lucky, or think that happiness is only for few fortunate individuals, then you will find this tool or step toward happiness very helpful.
All you need is few minutes during your day. It is best to do it at the end of each day, but you can practice it any time during that day that you have a spare moment. You would also need a way to jaw down some notes. You can use a pen and paper, or get fancy and use google docs or notes on your iphone whatever works for you.
- Make notes of things that made you happy during the day.
- Make notes of things that made you angry or sad.
- Here is where things get more interesting. Start a paragraph with each event that made you mad or sad and under it list what would make that event even more unpleasant and what you could do to prevent this happening in the future. Here is an example:
What has made me mad today:
- This morning my boss humiliated me in front of my coworkers by telling everyone about my poor performance.
What would be worse than this:
- He could fire me
- He could point out my poor performance in front of senior management
- He could cut my pay due to my poor performance
What can I do to make sure this does not happen again:
- Work harder and try to improve my performance
- Talk to my boss and tell him how I felt
Repeat this for every single event that made you mad during the course of the day. When you are done, read through each individual event and you will not only become happy that the worst did not happen and call yourself lucky, but also you will learn how to deal with the situation when it happens and don’t let it to make you mad or sad at the first place.
Don’t get me wrong, there are events that are the absolute worst and nothing worse than that, could happen, like losing a close family or friend, but luckily those don’t happen every day.
You don’t have to be lucky to be happy, you just need to learn to be happy. Step one in this learning journey is the ability to see good things in every situation by reflecting on that situation.
Next time when you get mad of your spouse for nags all day, list what could be even worse, like having a sick spouse, who you had to take care of, or losing your spouse suddenly. Then reflect on how you could prevent this from happening like helping them more often.
To learn and properly use the reflection tool toward your happiness, like any other tool will take time. You got the manual, now you have to use it every day and eventually you won’t need the manual anymore. Before you know it, your list of things that you wish to have to be happy will disappear and you will be that person who everyone around you will wonder how you can be so happy and will call you lucky, then you can share your tool and manual with them.
Stay happy and healthy