8 Ways to Achieve Happiness in the New Year
Whether or not you set a New Year’s resolution, achieving happiness is always a goal to keep in mind. But with busy schedules and distractions, it can be difficult to make that the main focus. Now, with a fresh start in 2019, it’s time to prioritize your happiness. And here’s 8 ways to get you started.
Give yourself some self-compassion
When life isn’t going your way, it’s easy to get down on yourself. We ask ourselves what we did wrong and what we could’ve done better, but does beating yourself up get you anywhere? There’s a direct link between self-compassion and success. When you come down on yourself after a setback, you actually have less of a chance of bouncing back. However, when you show yourself some self-compassion, it can push you closer to your goals. Give yourself a pep talk or an affirmation. Although it’s helpful to have a shoulder to cry on, sometimes it’s best to self-soothe, as you are stronger than you think.
Even if you consider yourself to be a positive person, we all have negative thoughts. These thoughts prepare us for the worst. They’re our brain’s way of protecting ourselves. But when these negative thoughts becoming consuming, they’re no longer serving as a form of protection. They limit your ability to see possibilities and prevent you from believing in yourself. When you can underestimate threats and overestimate your ability to overcome them (instead of the other way around), this optimism can make a real difference. To do so, make a conscious effort to not blow things out of proportion. Always try to see the upside of every situation. Even if it seems like it’s the worst thing that could happen, know that there’s always something to take away and learn from every situation. Try finding the opportunity in every challenge. And take chances instead of letting fear rule you.
Take care of yourself (and don’t be afraid to indulge!)
Self-care really seemed to be the hot topic of conversation in 2018. Historically, it’s been drilled in our minds that we have to keep pushing ourselves no matter what, putting others first. Now that we’ve seen the negative effects that can have on our health, we just can’t stop talking about self-care. This is taking care of yourself physically, mentally and emotionally. This can be through diet, exercise, meditation, therapy, etc. When you take care of yourself, you’re more energized to take on whatever life throws at you. And don’t be afraid to indulge! Take a bath, get a massage, or whatever you like to do just for you.
When your stress is at an all-time high, remember this acronym – Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired. If one or more of those feelings are present, this is a reminder to pause and slow down. Take a few deep breaths. Act intentionally and give your body what it needs – eat if you’re hungry, let out your anger in a constructive way, call a friend if you’re lonely and rest if you’re tired.
Similarly to addressing conflict, think about how you handle stress as individuals as well as a couple. How are you each when something stressful happens at work? Or you haven’t had enough sleep? Or are in the process of moving? Early on in the relationship, we tend to hide our signs of distress. Now this can only go on for so long. Many stressors show up during the course of a relationship. When the pressure is on, do you shut down and isolate or resolve the issue as a team?
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Say goodbye to self-doubt
Self-doubt can get in the way of so many things. It keeps you from taking the necessary risks you need in order to grow. Everyone has self-doubt. It’s only natural. But don’t let it take up space in your head. If your doubts are blocking your success, try replacing them with a positive outlook. Take the right steps to make your success a reality. Say goodbye to self-doubt and hello to self-confidence.
Cultivate a “winning” frame of mind
When you have a “winning” frame of mind or a growth mindset, you know that success and rejection are a package deal. You accept them equally knowing that you can learn and grow from both successes and failures. Know the setbacks happen for you, not to you. Really understanding that will help you overcome those setbacks and move forward even stronger than before. When you truly live in this growth mindset, you know that the strength within you is greater than the challenges you face.
Stop minimizing your accomplishments
Just as we are naturally full of self-doubt, we are also quick to judge ourselves and minimize our accomplishments. Take a step back and observe these judgments from afar. Start to recognize when the self-sabotage starts to kick in. Don’t believe the voice that tells you that you can’t do it or you’re not good enough. Don’t let this kind of thinking fuel your decisions. When you can separate these thoughts, they have less meaning. As a result, you’ll be able to accomplish more and achieve your goals.
Whether it’s helping a friend in need or volunteering at a local shelter, it feels good to contribute to something greater than yourself. Yes, we are all about self-care and that is still important, but it’s also important to do good for others. Doing so gives you a sense of purpose and connects you to others in a more meaningful way. By taking care of others, you’re actually taking care of yourself too.
Wishing you a Happy New Year from all of us at Empowered Therapy!
If you’re looking for even more ways to achieve happiness this year, schedule an appointment with one of our counselors today.
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Are you ready to make happiness a priority this year? But not sure where to start? Schedule an appointment with one of our counselors today.