3 Tenets to Create Happiness

3 Tenets to Create Happiness

There are many formulas for happiness.

Many have written about all the very many secrets to happiness.

I myself have written and spoken much about habits for happiness.

And they’re all useful! In different ways for different people there are different paths to happiness and wellbeing.

So, to add to the list, I’m happy to share this version by Claudia Skowron via Psychology Today …


  • Growing happiness through a solid foundation is vital in creating lasting changes.
  • Developing coping skills, self-compassion, and a sense of purpose can help create a foundation for happiness.
  • If we choose not to feed into unpleasant emotions with opposite behaviors, eventually they begin to lose their strength.
Source: xusenru/Pixabay

Source: xusenru/Pixabay

Happiness has been written and talked about at length, yet, we still seem to struggle to find it. So why, amongst the invaluable amount of information available, do we still struggle to find it? For starters, happiness is not a destination but a daily effort. For anything to stick or withstand the test of time, it must have a solid foundation.

When I work with clients, the number-one treatment goal I hear is “I just want to be happy.” Clients often tell me about all the ways they have tried to create happiness and be happy through day-to-day practices. But what is often missing is the creation of a solid foundation in which to develop and grow happiness. As such, the following are three principles, or tenets, to build the foundation to create happiness.

1. Opposite to Emotion Action

Opposite to emotion action (OEA) is an emotion regulation coping skill derived from DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy). The premise is simple: Do the opposite of what your emotion is telling you to do. For instance, if you feel angry just walk away instead of lashing out. But the simplicity of OEA oftentimes makes it misleading and unrealistic. If it were as simple as doing the opposite, none of us would struggle with unpleasant emotions.

Instead, OEA should be looked at as taking the very first baby step to simply not “feed into” the unpleasant emotion. If I’m feeling sad and depression is telling me to isolate, I can implement OEA by opening up the door in my room and texting a friend. These small baby steps make OEA more realistic while subsequently not feeding into unpleasant emotions.

So how does this help create happiness? Negativity and unpleasant emotions must be fed for them to grow. If we choose not to feed into these unpleasant emotions with opposite behaviors, eventually, they will begin to lose their strength. Focusing on behaviors instead of changing emotions makes them more attainable, and by changing behaviors consistently, we will begin to shape the emotions that follow…

… keep reading the full & original article HERE