The question here is not to be happy or try to change the way we think. The question here is what we can actually adopt to be in the state of calm and happiness in most of the times of our life. This may include linking our self to the truth, being more futuristic , understanding our self in order to control our emotions etc.
What is a hard time?
It can be stress or anxiety or any kind of panic situation.
What happens in a panic situation?
To understand our happiness , we need to understand our sorrow, panic or sad emotions first. Let’s try to understand it in a biological way. When we panic, correspondingly the following activities happen automatically in our body. We do not instruct our brain or other body parts to do it.
- First of all, our pupil will become larger, allowing more light in. That gives us a better view of what’s happening around us.
- Our mouth will become dry as the glands stop secreting saliva.
- We start breathing harder because we need more oxygen.
- Our heart rate will beat faster as it needs to supply more oxygen into our blood and deliver it to our muscles.
- Liver releases sugar as sugar provides strength and energy to the muscles.
Why does our body react like above in panic?
Above activities are a part of our digestive system which in a panic situation is shutting down. Further the process of our body to get rid of waste also shuts down.
It’s because our brain gives importance to things which are at priority. During stress, anxiety or panic situation our brain will think ; first I need to come out of this situation or problem and after that I will think of digestion and my other routine activities like blood supply, converting food into nutrition etc.
Brain thinks that we have a bigger problem right now, I am very uncomfortable. I need to solve this first and rest of the processes in the body can slow down. This is a Human’s natural instinct.
Friends, this is the starting point, the main source when we start developing health problems.
In todays century our health problems have changed. Earlier problems like fever, typhoid , cataract, diabetes were considered big but now we have medication for all. We pop up a pill and go to work.
Nowadays we are suffering from brain strokes, BP, Paralysis, kidney failure etc. And the reason for these big problems is only one – Stress/ overthinking/ loneliness/ fear/ anxiety . Whatever you say, they all are the same.
And the solution is also one and that is to be happy.
We can’t control the problems but we can definitely control our reactions towards it.
“Happiness is not a situation or a reason , it is a choice”
How to stay happy ? How to feel strong in hard times?
As we say that happiness is a choice and a way of life, not an outcome of situation ; we need to change our lifestyle by instilling some good habits.
Following are some of the techniques and tips which I have tried on myself and have got extreme benefits in short and long run. If we are able to inculcate few of them slowly , then they will not only attain internal happiness but will make our self more aware of how we control our emotions & mind and finally lead a purposeful life.
1. Have proper 8 hour quality sleep – This means we take a proper 8 hour quality sleep and we wake up fresh. Have you ever noticed that when we don’t take quality sleep , we wake up in haste, feeling drowsy and not fresh. Then we may drive a little aggressively. We go to work and react more to situations. Quality sleep cleans the brain from extra thoughts, stress, anxiety. A fresh , rejuvenated brain is able to process feelings and emotions in better way, hence we are able to give more balanced responses. But this also does not mean that you should over sleep as that may lead to headaches, memory problems , bp etc. we need to have proper balance in our body.
2. Do breathing exercise in Yoga – exercise like brahamri, udgeet or simply said deep breathing helps to fill lungs with air , ultimately our lungs function better by supplying more oxygen to blood vessels and brain which indeed helps to reduce any stress or tension in body. It makes the organs of the body function better by improving digestion, blood flow, 5 sense organs, reproductive, respiratory system etc. . We become more aware and focused which makes us satisfied and happy.
3. Stay in present – When we are thinking , its either about the past or the future. When we are thinking about past, we are in judgmental mode, about people, our self, situation etc. We think – why that happened, it could have happened in a better way or we may feel good for a situation that gave us reward. Secondly when we think about future, we fear it, from the uncertain happenings that may happen. In both the situations we are not living in the present and are not enjoying. We are not open to what the universe is trying to tell us at that moment and we skip all the important messages. To have a feeling of achievement and feel happy we need to open our arms to the opportunities that we are getting from our environment.
4. Don’t be dependent on others – we should not seek approvals for small things from others or those who matter a lot to us because this means that we are giving the control of our life in their hands. Let’s say if that person is not available then your work will also be delayed and your emotions, feelings and needs will start depending on the other person. At the end you are responsible for your identity and the efforts you put to create one.
5. Don’t compare or copy others – we know everyone have their own particular talent. It is the purpose of every human being’s life to find his or her own particular talent and work on it, further to give benefit to the society. Every human is different and their purpose of life is different. It is good to have inspiration but every human should find their own strength and weakness.
6. Follow your passion and don’t quit – we feel successful and truly happy when we put efforts and experience the hardships we have faced to achieve our goals. We should not bother about others opinions or criticism so much, in fact we should take them as motivators to improve our work. Just think either we succeed or learn. We truly can fail only in 2 situations i.e. when we don’t try or quit in between.
7. Give special importance to Time – We say that time is money but we all waste our time. We give a lot of time to social media, play small games or just scroll on our phone. It may give temporary happiness but on a long run it does not give a good feeling because we realize that we have wasted a lot of time in unproductive things. Therefore we need to invest time daily towards our goals.
8. Have your own rules – It is not important to follow the rules of your inspiring model but it is very important to have your own rules for example few people go by routine, They repeat and do the same task everyday till they gain perfection. But if a routine makes you less creative then its not your way. You need to make your own model. If you want to be time specific I.e. you will give half an hour to some task daily or you want to be a task specific that you will be completing this task no matter whatever time it takes. We need to understand that everyone have their own success strategy therefore you should research various strategies to achieve success and apply those techniques which goes with your personality type.
9. Define your happiness correctly – On broad level there are two types of happiness:
- One is intrinsic, which comes from within and is not affected by the environment. Intrinsic happiness is long lasting and it builds our confidence like goal achievement, lifetime adventure, experiencing new things, having good knowledge.
- Second is extrinsic, which depends upon your situations, people around you and materialistic things. Extrinsic happiness is short lived and Temporary. It gives us confidence like appreciation from others, getting gifts or any materialistic wealth like wearing branded clothes. So we need to accept that the materialistic things will leave us and will never be the correct source of happiness. It will only be accomplished by the things which satisfies us from within.
10. Stay away from negatively influencing people – These are those people who will waste your time and will drive you away from the right direction in the most innocent way possible, which they themselves might not know. They can be from our relatives, friends, office or classmates. The company of people really influences our personality. There are few type of personalities from whom you should maintain a distance. For Example:
- Sad people who are always cribbing about how much less they have,
- Gossipers who try to engage you by telling and unproductive story about others,
- Aggressive people who take away your peace and try to make you believe something as per them,
- Confused people as the keep on changing and give you random thoughts,
- Jealous people who will try to find ways to tell you that you will not succeed or stop you in trying something new or simply try to distract you. The quality of your relationship is much more important than the quantity.
11. Make a list for life and complete it – you can make a list for yourself. Below is my personal list which I follow and it gives me a great sense of living my life to its fullest and gives me intrinsic happiness. The list is as follows:
- Do at least one adventure in an year
- Learn at least one musical instrument
- Perform on stage
- Learn something new every year
- Donate yearly
- Try to bring smile on people face
- Do some exercise daily travel to new place at least one year
- Have at least one friend for life and have full faith and trust in them
- Play games and try to have one favorite sport
- Do it yourself then be dependent on others
- Research more on self and understand what really makes me feel happy and do it
- These are few of the things on my list which gives me the feeling of self satisfaction and I have my own ways of doing them. Similarly you can make your own list which can be Yearly/ weekly or quarterly and can work on it accordingly