Happiness can be interpreted in different ways by all of us, and is it possible to measure it? We have a good idea when we are happy as the chemicals in our brain release the endorphins, however do we ensure that it is happening regularly.
The first step is to recognise what does make you happy.
Dr Steve Peters the author of the Chimp Paradox gives a really easy way to look at:-
- Immediate happiness
- Delayed happiness
Make a list of everything that immediately makes you happy:-
- Cup of coffee
- Glass of red wine
- Long walk (with or without the dog)
- Watching your favourite TV show
- Reading a good book
Everyone will have a list unique to them, and worth taking time to reflect on what does give you immediate happiness. The joy is that you can adjust your quickly, and the fact you have it on the list is that psychologically you recognise it is an activity that you enjoy. At the end of the day how many times have you rewarded yourself with immediate happiness.
Delayed happiness is events that you plan, so might look something like this
- Meeting up with some mates for coffee
- Walking with a friend
- Game of tennis/golf/squash
- Cinema (outdoor currently)
The delay creates anticipation and often the wait makes it all the more enjoyable. It is good to create your own delayed happiness not just the planning of others that you buy into.
Start to be action orientated around making yourself happy, as no-one will do it for you.
Tracking each day as to what has made you happy will reinforce the behaviour. Start by journalling the days events this may well give you new items to add to your list.
Make yourself happy and measure it constantly…
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