Happiness is a state of mind

Happiness is a state of mind

I hope you enjoy and/or find interesting this happiness related article from the Desert Dispatch.

What Ails You: Happiness is a state of mind


Stress is a general feeling of unhappiness. You feel pressured, inadequate and frustrated. How many times have you said to yourself “If only (fill in the blank), then I would be happy.” What are you waiting for? Be happy today.

Happiness is a state of mind, a perception, a habit. To be happy, decide each morning that today will be a good day. Set out to enjoy that good day determined not to let the little buggy things that happen get in the way of your happiness. You can and will be happy even if (fill in the blank) never happens.

One of the most common things that rob us of our happiness is not having enough time for ourselves. I bet you can think of a dozen things you would enjoy doing if only you had time. Don”t you feel that you spend so much time doing the things you ought to do that you don”t have enough time to do the things you want to do?

How can you find the time you need to do the things that nurture and revitalize you?

First, take a good look at how you spend your time. Aren”t there things you are doing during your day that you could easily do without? One of the more common things that rob of us of time is the TV. Is it really that important that you watch that episode of “Law and Order” for the fifth time?

What causes us to sit in front of the TV night after night, weekend after weekend is inertia. Inertia is that force which causes an immobile object to stay at rest until something sets it in motion. We sit in front of the TV for hours and complain we just don”t have enough time to do the things we enjoy. Well stop. Turn off the TV. Get up and go do something.

What else robs you of time?

Are you spending needless hours cleaning the house when a more efficient schedule could get it done in half the time or less? Pick up a book on housekeeping and read the speed-cleaning tips. Join a housecleaning club like Flylady.com. This innovative website will absolutely inundate your e-mail with helpful hints, but, more importantly, will send you 15 minute tasks each day which will make your weekend house blessing – what Flylady calls time spent cleaning – a breeze.

Are you bringing work home? Take a hard look at your work habits and see if there aren”t things you can do to make your time spent there more efficient.

Make lists of the things you need to get done on a weekly and daily basis. By writing down your obligations, you will start to see how to better arrange them so they take less time. Also, you may have the chance to really see how you are spending your time. Whittle away at the “unnecessary” things that rob you of enjoyment.

Learn to delegate. Do you find that you are doing everything and resenting others for the things you have to do to take care of them? Insist that everyone in your life do their share. It takes a family to run a household. If everyone pitches in, everyone works less while more gets done.

If you insist on being the only one taking care of things, then you need to tweak your thinking. Instead of seeing your efforts as proof of your martyrdom, see your efforts as taking care of the people you love. Each time you pick up your husband’s socks, remember this is an act you choose to do to show your loving concern for his care. Do you have to call to remind your wife for the tenth time to pick up your prescription? Instead of telling her, try asking her if she has time to run the errand for you. Remember to tell her that you love her when you call.

Talk with your loved ones and tell them honestly what life is like for you. Let them know clearly how much stress you are under. Let them know you need help to manage everything and let them pitch in where they can. It’s OK to remind them often; it is not OK to emotionally beat them into submission. Most importantly, when you do catch someone helping you, remember to thank them and show appreciation for their efforts. Good habits are formed through positive feedback.

Learn to say no. Whenever someone asks you to take on another responsibility, take time to consider. Sometimes we say yes reflexively. Don”t say yes simply because you are afraid someone will be disappointed if you say no. Consider what you are being asked to do and whether it is really something you want to do. There is an unspoken rule in organizations that if you want something done, ask the busiest person to do it. Especially at church or in other volunteer organizations, you”ll find there are probably only a small handful of folks who do everything while others reap the benefits. Just like at home, insist that everyone do their fair share.

Time is not infinite. Dole it out like the precious commodity it is. Prioritize your life and then allow time to various activities based on how they fit into your priorities. As you fill in your schedule, remember to allow time each day just for you. Take care of yourself. If you don”t take care of you, you will have nothing left to offer others. You will find that when you spend adequate time taking care of yourself doing things you truly enjoy, you will feel happier because you will be happier.


Jackie Randa is a physical therapist who owns Back on Track in Barstow. She can be contacted at jranda@aol.com