We all WANT to be happy, right?
I believe, we all have good intentions and that we try each day to find the path to our own individual happiness, whatever we think that is. The problem is that some of us are never quite able to either a) define what would make us happy or b) figure out how to achieve it even if we are able to define it. Sometimes we are own worst enemy and actually take ourselves further from our goal of happiness without even realizing it.
Are we doing it one purpose? Not necessarily. Sub-consciously? Maybe.
Certainly, circumstances outside of our control can make life very unhappy, but a big part of not finding joy in our every day lives comes from our very own thinking, during very ordinary, regular life events.
Let me be perfectly clear. It is natural to go through times of unhappiness. We all have our down moments. What we must be careful of is creating new thought patterns that set us up for continual unhappiness.
Here are 15 destructive and pervasive thoughts of habitually (seems like they are always), unhappy people.
1.”I hate my job.”
Yeah, so what. So does everyone. I will even step out on to a limb here and say that many seemingly fulfilling professions, like doctors or athletes, hate their jobs too some of the time.
So what is the solution? Either quit and find something else if it is that unbearable, or learn how to enhance other parts of your life so that you don’t focus on the work part. Your job can merely be a means to an end, a way to finance the life outside work.
2. “I hate this city, town, country.”
Feeling stuck in a physical place can have a profound affect on your happiness. It makes you feel like you have no choice and that you are trapped.
Examine why the place you live in does not fit into your happiness path. Keeping all other circumstances the same, (like finances) where would you love to live? Is it possible to get there? Remember, you are you no matter where you live. If you carry your bad thoughts to another location, you will still be unhappy, just in a nicer place.
3. “I had the best time in high school, college, etc.”
If you keep believing that the best times of your life are behind you, you will never find happiness in today. Of course you should fondly remember times in the past but when you are habitually day dreaming about your old life, it prevents you from taking the steps to ensure that you are making new happy memories.
4. “If only I had X, I would be happy.”
It’s always something isn’t it? While the previous point was about the past, this one is about the future. If or when. What terrible prisons those 2 words create. You will never be able to live and enjoy the present if you are constantly putting conditions on it.
5. “Bad things always happen to me.”
I’m sure that statistically speaking, a few good things had to have managed to happen to you. It is amazing how your attitude can shift if you learn how to focus on those few things. You may be surprised to find out that there are far more good things happening to you then you were previously willing to admit.
6. “I can’t get a break.”
You want a break, have a Kit Kat. Seriously though. If you can’t get a break, examine your decisions and make adjustments to create better opportunities in your future.
7. “Sue is so lucky. I wish I had her life.”
I bet you do. Did you know that Sue gets up at 5 every morning and works a 12 hour shift and then goes home to take care of her elderly mother. You don’t know Sue’s story. You only see the part you envy.
Very, very few people are lucky and live what you think is a charmed life without having achieved it through hard work and sacrifice. Don’t waste your time being jealous of a life you are not willing to work for.
8. “Yes, I did get that promotion but here’s a list of reasons why that’s a bad thing.”
Wow. Even when something good happens you find a way to burst the bubble.
9. “My life is boring.”
Your life is exactly what you make of it. Some people like boring. If you don’t, you have to change it. Take a course, try a new sport, meet some new friends, plan a vacation. You are only limited by your imagination and goal setting skills. Get to work.
10. “If I help Mark do that, then he will owe me one.”
People that go through life always thinking “What’s in it for me?”, will never experience true happiness. It is amazing how good helping someone else can feel. Putting a smile on someone else’s face always makes me instantly happy. Try being selfless.
11. “That’s not my fault.”
Of course not. Nothing ever is. That way you never have to make changes or make adjustments.
Sooner or later, you have to take responsibility for your life and what you make of it. When you do that, you take back control. That alone should make you happy.
12. “Why is everyone against me?”
Paranoid much? And maybe, the one against you the most, is you.
13. “No one wants me to be with me.”
First off, no one wants to attend a pity party. If you stop being negative all the time, you will attract more people instead of repel them.
And if you notice, negative people attract negative people. Happy people attract other happy people. Try it. You will see it is true.
14. “Your problems are minuscule. Mine are way worse.”
Misery is not a competition. You don’t win anything but more misery.
15. “Life sucks.”
Yes, sometimes it does. No one promised you a rose garden. And if they did, they forgot to tell you about the thorns.
We all go through times when the above thoughts creep into our heads. We wallow in the thoughts for a bit and then shake it off and move forward. These thoughts only become a problem when they become pervasive and long standing, and the longer you hang on to them, the harder it is to shake them. Try to stop them in their tracks by consciously practising gratitude and making good decisions.
Please note that if you are experiencing intense and/or extended periods of unhappiness, you should seek medical help.