What do you intend when you wish someone a Happy New Year? What type of happiness do you want for yourself? Do you want to be happy, happier, or your happiest in 2020? What does “happy” even mean anyway?
Happy is a feeling. We can feel however we want. It’s not always easy, but I do believe that how we feel is simply a choice. We can get ourselves happy at any time we so choose.
Try it now. Be happy. Stand up straight, think of a truly happy time in your life, smile, and feel the happy.
Did you try it? Did it work? I know it did. But I also know that sustaining that feeling throughout the trials of everyday living is a challenge.
Still, some people seem to have the ability to be happy no matter what. Others seem to never be happy. Most of us are probably somewhere in between.
I think that unfortunately we’ve been conditioned to be conditionally happy. We are happy when our perception of our current reality in life equals or exceeds our expectations for this moment in time. As a math equation it looks like this:
Reality ≥ Expectations = Happiness.
Using simple math then, we can achieve happiness by improving our reality and/or lowering our expectations. The easy choice would be to lower our expectations to our reality. You can choose to be happy right now with who you are and what you have. Be grateful and happy. Smile. Simple.
But we humans are not that easily satisfied. For some reason we have a strong natural desire to constantly grow and improve. Deep down we know we can always get better, and that we should. We are only truly happy when we are striving to be more than we are today.
That is why we establish new year’s resolutions. We know we can improve in some way, so we resolve to do something, or to stop doing something that will serve to make us better.
Unfortunately, most of us fail to keep our resolutions. 92 percent of us fail, 80 percent quit by mid-February. And since our reality then falls below our expectations, we are unhappy. We set ourselves up for failure by raising our expectations above what we can realistically achieve without radical changes in our behavior. I choose to change my mindset before tackling behaviors this new year.
My resolution for 2020 is to be happy. No conditions. No specifics. I simply choose to be happy starting right here, right now, today. In fact, just writing that made me happy. Realizing we truly do have control over the emotion of happy makes me … happy. Seriously, I’m smiling right now:-)
To keep myself on track, I also resolve to share what I am doing, and what I suggest you do too, every Monday morning. Each week will include a brief message (written and maybe even videos) and a simple task for you to complete to achieve and maintain your happiness.
I desperately want you to have a happy new year. Actually, I want you to have a happier new year, better than the last. Strike that, I want you to have the happiest year you have ever had. Yeah, that’s it. I wish you a Happiest New Year.
Here’s your first task. Think about the happiest year of your life to date. When was it? What did you do? Who were you with? What did you experience? What did you achieve? How did you feel? Get a sheet of paper, write “Happiest Year” at the top, and jot down your immediate thoughts about that year.
Now think about what you could do in 2020 to have an even happier year than that. What will you do, who will you be with, what will you experience, what will you achieve, and how will you feel? Title the reverse side of your paper “Happiest 2020” and capture your initial thoughts.
I plan to achieve my happiest year through living what I call the Playground Heaven Life. I will openly share what I am doing, my successes and failures, what you can learn from them, and what I suggest you do to live your happiest year too.
To further help us all, I have set up a private Facebook group where we can share our happiness successes and best practices with each other. Where we can learn from, motivate, inspire, and support one another.
The purpose of this group is to help us all regain the feeling of joy we had on the playground as kids. True lasting happiness. We will do this through:
Please join us to learn how. Each week will provide useful and practical tips you can put into use immediately to improve your state of happiness.
I also encourage you to forward and share this message to your friends who may be interested in joining us.
Look for weekly messages beginning January 6, 2020. The best way to ensure you see them is to join our email list by scrolling to the bottom of the playground heaven website here.
Weekly messages will also be posted to Facebook on the Playground Heaven and Saint Builder Foundation pages, and in the Playground Heaven Living group. Please like and follow those sites to make sure you don’t miss out.
In the meantime, be grateful for who you are, who you have around you, and what you have right now. Bingo, instant happiness.
I wish you a Happy, Happier, and the Happiest New Year in 2020!!! Actually, it’s not a wish or hope. I know you will have your happiest year if you join us and participate in living the playground heaven life.