Days of Happiness: Day Seventeen

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Days of Happiness: Day Seventeen

The 30 days of Happy Thoughts series is inspired by the International Day of Happiness (March 20th, 2017).

 

Today’s Motivational Video

Today’s Happy Thought



 

National Nutrition Month® Tidbits

March is also National Nutrition Month®! Eating healthy is important to your happiness too!

Check out this week’s game here.

Check out this week’s NNM video here.

Day of Happiness Celebrations: Q&A


Happiness means different things to different people, what does Happiness mean to you?

For the most part, I think happiness is a state of mind. It means finding joy and contentment in everyday life. Sometimes that’s easier said than done, but really trying to see the positive side of everything is helpful.

 

Even when I struggle to find the positive, I know the struggles are impermanent. I like the Buddhist saying, “10,000 joys, 10,000 sorrows”. Life isn’t always going to be rainbows and roses – and we shouldn’t expect it to be. But, the bad times do pass with time and there is more joy to come. Hope provides the strength to weather the storms.

 

Also, what makes me happy won’t necessarily make someone else happy. Happiness is unique to each individual and everyone defines it differently. Even the things that make me happy today may not make me happy tomorrow. 10 years from now, my definition of happiness will look different.

 

Do you believe happiness is an emotion or more of a state of mind?

Great question! I believe long-term happiness is more a state of mind. And I think this type of lasting happiness stems from being positive, recognizing what’s meaningful in our lives, and living our lives according to our own values and beliefs (not what’s prescribed by society).

 

However, I do think happiness is expressed as an emotion, but this is more of a short term feeling. Roller coasters and zip lines bring me an abundance of this type of happiness. 🙂

 

Do you consider being happy important to you? Why?

Being happy is very important to me, but I also don’t expect to be in a constant state of happiness.  I think that we all strive for maximum happiness – it’s part of the human condition. Experiencing the simple pleasures in my everyday life and recognizing everything I have to be grateful for are great sources of happiness for me.

 

What do you consider a fundamental barrier to Happiness in your life?

Myself. Sure, there are some unpleasant circumstances beyond my control, but I have a great degree of control over my thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Whenever I’m unhappy, I try to look inside – for the thoughts that are causing me the unhappiness. The interesting thing is – most of the time these thoughts are of the future – thoughts and feelings that take the form of fear and uncertainty. I do my best to bring myself back to the present.

 

How important is wealth and money to your own happiness?

As much as I want to deny it, it does plays a role. Paying off all of our consumer debt and building a nest egg provides my family with more choices. We have less stress and more freedom. So, in that respect, it has definitely contributed to happiness.

 

On the other hand, having more money wouldn’t bring me more happiness. Living a frugal life has helped me recognize this. I find great joy in things that don’t cost money –  mostly related to how I spend my time. Those simple pleasures – sipping my morning coffee while watching the sun rise, reading a great book by the fire, hiking on a beautiful day, digging in my garden, spending an hour talking to my family – those are the things that fill me up and bring me the greatest happiness.

 

How important is health and wellness to happiness?

I think health and wellness are very important to happiness. Being healthy and fit allows me to do so many of the things that bring me joy – hiking, biking, rock wall climbing, taekwondo, gardening and keeping up with my teenagers.

 

But, too often, we take our health for granted – that is, until it’s negatively affecting us. This one hits a little too close to home right now – and I’ve recently realized just how important it is. Though I don’t know exactly what my health issue is at this point, what I do know is I have multiple cysts in one of my legs. My fear is that I will have limited mobility in the future due to treatment and/or progression, but that’s just the evil fear monster creeping in and robbing me of my happiness today. I’ve tried to kill that monster and focus on taking control. One way or another, I’ll find ways to push forward and still be able to do what I like to do. I’m pretty stubborn, so whatever happens, I won’t let it stop me.

 

What has been the happiest moment in your life?

Honestly, I cannot name just one moment. But I can tell you that marrying my husband and having my children have brought me immense, indescribable, boundless happiness.

 

Do you have any specific goals or resolutions for 2017?  If so, would your share your top two that directly relate to your own Pursuit of Happiness?

I have a heap of goals for 2017.

 

My top 2? That’s tough!

 

I guess my top priority is to figure out what exactly my health issue is and address it head on.

 

My second goal is, unfortunately, dependent on the first, but it’s to buy our first rental property (this has been a dream of ours for years!). Getting started is the first big step and it brings us one step closer to making my husband’s 9-5 optional.

 

Do you consider giving to others or charity work an important part of your own Pursuit and why?

Yes, yes, yes!!! Volunteering, giving time and money, and simply spreading random kindness is a top source of happiness for me! I’ve experienced such immense happiness by taking part in the Rockstar Community Fund in the last few months. Giving can be life changing.

 

What 2 things have you learned in your own pursuit that you would like to share with others?

  1. You won’t find happiness in material things. Sure, buying that new, shiny thing will give you a little boost of happy, but it’s short-lived and doesn’t lead to long-term happiness and joy. Though I’ve never been a big spender, once I really put this into practice, life changed drastically – for the better.
  2. Focus on what’s most important. This relates to #1, but takes it a step further. When you really define what’s most important in your life, and then live your life accordingly, you will experience happiness and fulfillment. Don’t let society tell you what’s important. You decide what’s most important to you.

 

If you could recommend only three websites/books/articles to anyone reading this, what would they be, and why?

Only 3? In no particular order:

1-The Five Secrets You Must Discover Before You Die – because it’s an easy read, chock full of valuable wisdom for living a happy and fulfilled life.

2-  Your Money or Your Life – because it shows you how to create freedom by aligning your money with your life values and priorities.

3 – Tiny Buddha – because it’s a blog I’ve read for years that has so much useful wisdom on life, happiness, mindfulness and meaning.

 

What is your blog/website address and theme (if you want to share) for 2017?

I blog at Centsiblyrich.com. I talk about all things money, with a focus on using money as a tool to create a life of freedom and choice. It’s all about the mindset!


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5 thoughts on “Days of Happiness: Day Seventeen”

  1. Best of luck sorting out the health issue. That can be incredibly stressful. We just bought our first rental property and I’m excited to get past the remodel stage and actually start renting it. It’s nice to feel like you are diversifying your investments especially for those working towards FI.

  2. I think you’re spot on about fearful thoughts of the future, and uncertainty, leading to unhappiness Amanda. And I would bet that more than 50% of the things we worry about don’t come to pass.

    Thanks for the tip about the Tiny Buddha blog. That’s a new one for me I’m sure to enjoy.

  3. Health is your wealth! If you can’t enjoy your gold, then it doesn’t matter how much of it you have.. it’s unfortunate.

    I’m trying to sleep more which is ironic given I only slept about 3.5 hours last night… I don’t have an off button I guess 🙂

    Thanks for sharing Amanda’s interview – really enjoy what you are doing here.

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