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It’s easy to agree on the fact that we all want happiness in our lives. It’s more difficult to agree on what exactly it is and how to get it. This is something that could be holding your very own happiness back.

You know you want to be happy and you know it’s important for your wellbeing. However, you’re confused and unclear about how to actually get to happiness. This isn’t surprising as there are so many myths and messages being shouted from the rooftops. It’s difficult to know which ones are the right ones to listen to, especially when a lot of the messages conflict each other.

That’s why I like to rely on positive psychology, the science of happiness and human performance, to tell me what works. Learning about the field and transitioning into it myself changed my life. I went from being a natural pessimist to a trained optimist. I started seeing the glass half full rather than half empty. I started to believe in myself and enjoy every step of my life journey.

There were many learnings that made this transformation possible, but there were six that really stood out. These were the ones that pushed me over the edge and into my happiness bubble. Now, I want to share them with you so you can make the same transformation yourself.

1. Learn the science of happiness.
Stop listening to random people giving you random happiness advice. Listen to the science of it instead. It is the science of positive psychology that will tell you what research has shown is the most effective path to happiness. All it takes is one book, one online course, or one conversation with an expert to get some facts straight.

2. Find out what makes you happy.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to happiness which is why you need to better connect with yourself to find out what fuels your unique happiness. Understand what your values are and live your life in alignment with them. Connect with your best strengths and use them every single day. Realise what your purpose in life is and lead a life that fuels this purpose.

3. Choose a positive perspective.
You can make a heaven out of hell and a hell out of heaven. It’s all to do with your perspective. You can choose to see your challenges as opportunities to grow. You can choose to see setbacks as learnings. You can choose to focus on what is good in your life. All of these things influence your happiness hugely.

4. Nurture your relationships.
As a human being, you are a social creature. You not only need each other to survive but also to thrive. This doesn’t mean you need to be extroverted and hang out with people 24 hours a day seven days a week. On the contrary, it means that you should develop deep, meaningful relationships with a handful (or two) of people in your life.

5. Treat your body with love.
Move it, nourish it, and give it the rest it needs. Without those basics, you won’t feel physically well which makes it even more difficult to feel mentally well. Have dedicated daily exercise slots and keep moving throughout your day. Use your body gestures, such as smiling, hugging, and laughing, to boost your happiness levels from the physical front.

6. Be still.
Happiness will have a hard time catching up with you if you’re too busy to notice it. Stop dashing from one thing to the next, from one thought to the next. Learn to slow down and take the time to reflect. This is how you connect to your intuitive voice which will further guide you to your happiness.

Basically, there are a lot of things you can do to make happiness stick, and none of them have to be difficult. Sure, changing your perspective to a positive one might take some time and effort, but with consistent practice and a compassionate heart, the journey to it will be a good one.

Remember that you are a human being, not a human doing. When you learn to slow down, you will realise that your contentment is already here.

Gaia by the Med Retreats and PTSD Coaching specialises in non-invasive, brain-based techniques that help clients alleviate the symptoms of PTSD, trauma and anxiety. These techniques are simple and easy to use and can be self administered once the client learns how to apply them, resulting in a powerful and beneficial long term impact.

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