In Positive Psychology the path to happiness is clear: let go and enjoy life now. Don’t procrastinate. Cause the most dangerous risk of all is the risk of spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later.
But people tend to put off their dreams. ‘I’ll start doing that amazing thing that I’ve always wanted to do, tomorrow.’ ‘If only my financial situation would change, I could…’ ‘When I will be in this and that situation I will go after my dream!’ Sound familiar? But what if you will spend your life waiting for the perfect moment? What if one day you will realize that you’ve waited for too long and you’re old and tired?
So what do you want, in life? Take a moment to think about it. And then go a step further – not what do you want but how do you want that thing to make you feel? How do you want to feel?
Happy? Strong? Confident? Rich? Beautiful? Choose. A simple exercise of gratitude can get you there! And getting there means being happier as a side effect. So what’s this magical exercise about?
- Put that feeling that you really want into your mind.
Satisfied. Loved. Respected. Filthy rich. Whatever.
- In your minds eye, picture what you already have that might give you that feeling.
For example, if you want to feel loved, think for example about the people you already have in your life. The people who care about you, who ask you how you are, you love and appreciate you in their lives. And then ask yourself what it would be like if you didn’t have that. What would you have instead? Realize how lucky and fortunate you already are.
- Take the time and enjoy this feeling of fortune. And smile. Recognize how loved, happy and affluent you already are.
The acknowledgement of where you already are will allow you to enjoy the feeling that you are desiring! You will feel confident, strong, rich, and thus happier.
But there is a twist. This exercise is only effective if it is an ongoing practice. So I highly recommend you keep a gratitude journal. 3 minutes a day, listing all the gratitude you can think of. You will feel the difference!