“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”
Far too many people waste time trying to buy happiness when it’s readily available without costing a cent. Some people just wish and dream of a day when they’ll be able to afford the things they feel will make them happy and successful, like a new home, exotic vacations, and more.
Happiness and success isn’t derived from tangible things. It’s a state of mind that allows you to further your progress in both your personal and professional life so that every day, you’re achieving goals and reaching new milestones toward a better life.
To get yourself into this state of mind, you have to develop daily habits that don’t hold you back, but instead help you get more done during the day, meet obligations with ease, and lie down at night with a smile on your face because everything’s headed in the right direction. Here are 7 daily habits that you can incorporate to increase your happiness and chances of attaining success.
Account for Your Future
Your life is happening. It’s being lived whether or not you’re in control. Every day that you wake up and go to bed is 24 hours of time that’s passed. For some people, those 24 hours really didn’t amount to anything special except the passage of time.
For others, they accomplished something that brought them happiness and contributed to the success that they envision for themselves. The difference in these two types of people is that one lets life drive him, and the other drives his own life.
Every day that you have to live is a day that you can control whether or not you’re happy – whether or not you’re going to be successful. It begins with a plan. What are you going to do today to take steps that create happiness?
What steps are you going to take to be successful? If you don’t know what steps to take, then you have no course of action. If that sounds like something you’ve struggled with, you can learn how to account for your future.
By doing this, you’ll start planning ahead for what you want – and making it happen. You can plan ahead each day for how you’re going to spend your time. Even your free time (and you should have free time) can be planned so that you’re living a life that’s full of happiness.
Planning ahead is one thing that the world’s most successful people have in common. They don’t fly by the seat of their pants and let things just occur – they craft the kind of life that they want to live.
They know that time is a commodity – perhaps one of the most valuable things to consider. They spend it wisely, just like they do the money they earn. Most people are great at investing in the lives of others.
You spend time doing things that bring happiness to people. You work hard to make others successful – whether those people are your work relationships or your personal ones.
There’s nothing wrong with investing in others.
However, you need to learn how to invest in your own life. If you don’t, you’re actually withdrawing from the stores of happiness and success that could be yours and not making deposits.
Without banking on your happiness and success, it will be a long, hard struggle to get what you want – if you get it at all. Some people make plans well ahead of time, and others do it in smaller increments.
You might plan for something you want to achieve for happiness and success next month, or the next day. But have an idea of how you want your day to unfold. Be specific, not vague – that way, you have a way to measure whether or not the day was a “win.”
Picture the Realization of Your Dreams
This is a way to visualize what it is that you want. When you use visualization, you keep your focus. This works to keep you motivated. Studies have shown that motivated people are happier and less stressed than those who aren’t.
It’s also true that people who have a dream they want to accomplish find more inner satisfaction. The daily act of taking the time to picture your dreams leads you to appreciate the journey.
You’ll be able to find happiness – even when things go wrong – if whatever steps you’re taking focus on seeing your dreams come true. Close your eyes and visualize you decorating your new home, seeing your bank account with a specific amount of money in it, or being welcomed home with open arms by a loving family.
This act of imagination will help you start living the role of the life you want to be in. But you don’t want to stay chained to disappointment for what hasn’t manifested itself yet.
Being appreciative of your current situation and where you’re heading is important, too. Be grateful for the things and the opportunities that come your way that allow you to chase after what you want.
If you have good health that allows you to do what you want to do, be thankful for that. Whenever opportunities come along, recognize them for what they are, a step toward the future you want.
Even when obstacles crop up, appreciate them. Because obstacles mean that you’re moving forward -hat you’re taking action to make the picture of your dreams a reality.
Find a Daily Challenge
When you challenge yourself in any area of your life, you end up growing. If you stick to what you already know and you only do the things you know you’re good at, you stay stagnant
Choose an area of your life to challenge yourself in (and make sure that you cover each of them). For example, in the area of exercise, challenge yourself to do more than you thought you could with your exercise program.
Maybe instead of doing 30 minutes of walking each day, you shoot for 45 minutes. You’ll gain a sense of accomplishment that will make you feel both happy and successful.
Try a new food – something that’s outside of your comfort zone. This broadens your horizons and can help you learn about other cultures. Maybe you find happiness in cooking, so this can bring your family together, too.
Learn something new. People that continually grow in knowledge challenge their brain. This can be a new language, book, or skill. It could be something like taking a dance lesson or visiting a place that moves you, shakes up your life, and gives you a deeper perspective.
Resurrect a failure. Every single person in the world has a failure of some kind in their life. They tried something and it didn’t work. They couldn’t accomplish a goal – couldn’t grasp enough of the knowledge needed to make an idea work.
Look back over something that you tried and really wanted but gave up on. Sometimes the passing of time can add fresh ideas and a better understanding of why the failure happened.
When you look back over your life at something that failed, it could be that you just weren’t prepared for that success. When you challenge yourself to be an “overcomer,” you’ll find a sense of happiness because of the completion of each task.
Finishing something contributes to success. It’s especially rewarding when you go back to something you previously failed at. Remember, it took many tries before the lightbulb finally worked!
Make It a Point to Give Your All Every Day
We all have areas of life that we hold back in. Maybe it comes out of fear of looking stupid, or fear of failure. But working hard every single day is the key to success.
In everything that you put your hand to, you have to give it your all. If it’s working around your house, don’t settle for “good enough.” Keep going – and even if you have to start the task all over again, work hard to make it right.
But remember – there is a difference in doing a task right and being a perfectionist. You can give your all with work and in personal relationships, and when you see the difference between doing enough and doing as much as you can, it will shock you at how better things are when you try hard.
Be fully present in everything you do every single day. Refuse to let yourself go through life on autopilot. You can tell if you’re on autopilot if you finish doing something, but you can’t remember parts about doing the task.
Your body was there working, but your mind was already off on something else. When you’re fully present, it can give you an appreciation for what you’re doing and for what you have.
Some people call this mindfulness. You leave multi tasking behind and focus on one thing at a time – one conversation, one meal, one project, etc. It helps you maximize your effort and emerge with better results than if you didn’t try as hard.
Stop Working When It’s Time to Stop
Remember that your life is a series of seconds, minutes and hours each day. It’s important to work hard because this contributes to your happiness and success. There’s nothing wrong with being the kind of person who works hard.
But if you’re working so many hours and you have such big projects on your shoulders that the line between work and your free time is blurred, it’s time to take a step back.
There’s a reason that taking time off work is important. This helps you recharge your batteries and helps you relax and not lose sight of the big picture of your life. Work is only a portion of your life. There are other aspects to it. When you allow work to take over, it throws everything else out of balance. This is one of the reasons that people start to eat unhealthy meals when they’re working too hard.
They get too tired or too stressed to take the time to prepare a healthy meal. It’s easier to grab whatever is convenient. If they took the time to de-stress, they would be making healthier decisions that would serve their work better.
You’ll be happier if you set work boundaries. People that have a definitive line between their work and off time are far more successful. When you take time off, you can actually improve your work performance.
Not doing this will lead to unhappiness, poor health, stress and can negatively affect your intimate relationships. Besides, you need to enjoy the fruits of your labor, and having a predetermined quitting time will enable you to make plans for that!
Protect Your Sleep Time
Striving to find personal satisfaction – especially if you’re trying to build a business – can impact your sleep. You might already know the importance of getting the sleep that your body needs.
But what you might not know is that when you skip out on getting enough sleep, you can sabotage yourself. Losing sleep leads to feelings of unhappiness, anxiety and irritability.
Plus, when you don’t get the sleep that your body needs, it leads to a loss of productivity. You will begin to slow down physically and cognitively because your body just can’t function at top performance when it doesn’t have the right amount of sleep.
You’ll find articles and advice that will tell you that you must get at least eight hours of sleep every night in order for it to be enough for your body. But the truth is that eight hours can be too much for some people and not enough for others.
One way to tell if you’re getting the right amount of sleep for your body can be determined by how you feel in the mornings. If you wake up and you feel refreshed, that’s a sign that you’re getting enough sleep.
Feeling sluggish means that you’re not getting the right amount. Getting enough sleep replaces the energy stores that you drained during the day. If you fail to refill that, then you’re running on a deficit the next day.
Sometimes the unhappiness in our personal lives or the work stress will prevent a good night’s sleep. It’s a vicious circle, because a lack of sleep contributes to the same issues.
If you’re not sleeping enough, start by examining your sleep habits. At you getting to bed early enough? Are you sleeping in a cool room with no distractions? Is your bedding comfortable?
If your sleep hygiene is good, but you’re still tired, you might go see your doctor. He may prescribe melatonin to see if that helps you get (and stay) asleep. Or he might have you participate in a sleep study.
Make sure you get to the root of the issue, because sleep is one health habit that will interfere in every part of your life, making you miserable – and possibly making you take out your frustrations on others.
Make Exercise and Eating Right a Priority
Having a daily habit of exercising can create happiness. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins or the feel good hormones that can lift your mood. When you exercise every day – even if it’s just going for a walk around the block at work or at home – you help improve the way your organs can do their jobs.
You make it easier for them to function. You also create more mental alertness in your brain when you exercise, because you increase the way that your organs can get the oxygen that they need.
Not getting enough oxygen can negatively affect your organs – and that includes your brain. Without the right amount of oxygen, it can impair your ability to think and to work through ideas, to attain goals and to get done what you want to get done each day.
But when you exercise, you create a way for your whole body to benefit – and this produces a sense of happiness. Making sure that you eat right can go a long way toward creating happiness and success in your life, too.
When you eat the wrong kinds of food, it can have an impact on how you feel physically and how you feel mentally. For example, there are certain foods that zap your energy.
When you eat them, you feel sluggish after your energy levels crash. If you eat a lot of foods that are high on the glycaemic index, you’ll experience fatigue. This will affect your performance because the tiredness will make it harder for you to concentrate.
Fatty foods, sugary foods and high carb foods should be eaten in moderation. Think of food as your body’s fuel to propel you through the day where you can get the most done on your task list.
Dress Successfully Every Day
The way that you dress affects your self-esteem and can make you feel less confident. Wearing clothes that are ill fitting or unflattering can affect your happiness.
You can even feel anxious or depressed. The clothing that you wear presents an image to the world – but the most important image is the one that you see. If you’re someone who battles self-esteem and confidence issues, wearing clothes that feed into that will subtract from your happiness.
You can try to experiment. Wear a pair of worn out sweatpants and a baggy shirt out in public. Don’t take the time to style your hair. Then go out wearing a nice outfit with your hair attractively styled.
You’ll notice a difference in the way that you walk and in the way that you act. When you dress like it doesn’t matter, it will change how you see yourself. But more than that, it changes how you’ll handle what you have to do that day.
You won’t feel your sharpest because the clothes affect you mentally. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to dress for success. What a lot of people don’t realize is that dressing for success isn’t just referring to looking the part.
It’s referring to internal feelings, too. When you dress for success, you feel happier. You feel like a success and then your actions will follow those feelings. Make it a habit every day to dress in clothes that make you feel good about yourself.
If you’re working online and having to present yourself to an audience via video, or meeting with people in person, dressing for success can help present a more professional persona, which can boost your sales, in turn – making you happier!
Don’t try to implement a bunch of new daily habits all at once. Build slowly. It takes awhile for a new habit to take root, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re slow to implement them on a routine basis.
It takes a few weeks to get with the program, but you’ll start to notice positive changes and that will motivate you to continue each and every day.
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