THINK…BACKWARDS…

So often I hear people say, “I’m in such a bad mood and I don’t even know why” I must confess to having felt that way before.  This can be a rather perfect scenario for being happy.  Now you may be wondering if I have completely lost my mind.  While that has yet to be determined, at least let me explain my last statement.  When it comes to adding more joy to your life, as with any worthwhile goal, one of the greatest challenges lies in just knowing how.  Let’s face it, if there was a simple step by step plan to a happy life, wouldn’t we all follow it?  One of the greatest challenges I have had in both putting together both this website and my book is people are different.  What makes one person happy, well it may not work for the next person.  So how can we discover what truly makes us happy and develop a formula to continually accomplish that?  I have two suggestions and they are complete opposites and involve thinking backwards. Now before I loose everyone completely, let’s take a step back.  Here is the first method. Even in the darkest of lives there are moments if not days when things just seem to be going your way.  Think back have you ever had one of those days where you are just happy with the world?  Here is a suggestion, try retracing your steps.  What do I mean?  Simple, start from how you are feeling and work back through your day.  Perhaps you had completed a project you were working on?  Maybe you brought a smile to the face of a friend or even a complete stranger.  Maybe you just finished listening to one of your favorite songs on the radio, or working out.  It will be different for everyone, and there may be a few things in there that just seem kind of crazy, but if they lead you to happiness…who cares!  The point here is to look at what makes up a great day for you.  Perhaps write them down on a list, or in a person journal (more on that in later in the week).  Ok, so perhaps you haven’t had one of those days in a while? Maybe you can’t remember what made you so happy, or just want to enjoy the feeling without trying to figure it out. Fair enough.  Even if you find yourself having a miserable day, it is cause to get excited!  Why would feeling miserable be anything to be excited about you may ask.  This is why, it works the same way as being happy.  If you’re having a bad day, stop and think about all the things that transpired to bring you to that point.  Make a list of those things too.  Not only will you come up with a list of things you would do well to eliminate from your life, but if you look at the opposite of those things, you have the seeds for what will make you happy.  So even knowing what you dislike can be a very healthy thing.  If you were to say, I dislike all the negative people I run into.  You will know limiting your exposure to negative people might be something you wish to work on.  You may also phrase it as “adding more positive people to my life would make it better”.  So as this week continues, try thinking backwards and form a plan for your own happiness.  A plan that would be as unique as the person writing it!

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