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7 Ways to Discover Happiness When You Hate the World

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In life, we are bound to experience the challenges that can sometimes put us down, it sometimes makes us forget to look at the brighter side of things. But with the help of our friends and family, we can stand up again and be able to aim for happiness. We just need to be positive and thankful for whatever we currently have.

 “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” ~Dalai Lama

Happiness is the most wanted dream for everyone. Almost everyone when asked about what they want in life, the answer will mostly be happiness. Happiness is always the primary goal–others are only secondary.

A mother when asked about what she wants for her child will surely answer to happiness.

Happiness is already challenging to find. But finding happiness when you hate the world is not just challenging but really daunting.

When I was on top of my career some years ago, happiness was mostly based on achievement. That was before tragedy struck. I was then supposed to be sent to the head office of my company in Vancouver. But fate was against my career path. I was diagnosed with a kidney disease. The same disease that killed some members of my family.

Sadly, I shared the same fate. I hated the world for giving me this just when I was at my prime. I was full of anger. It was the hardest time of my life. I had to stop working. I had to stay in the hospital to undergo different procedures. It was a tiring and long process; it tested what everything in me: including my faith and strength.

I was ready to give up when a friend told me that I shouldn’t. He said I’m still breathing and that is proof enough for hope. He said I just lost a job not my life, that, I can still be happy. I have my family and friends–he made me realize.

I should not be hindered by this awful disease. Instead, it should push me to fight.

I did.

It made me realize that happiness arrives through different routes.

Here’s my journey to finding happiness while hating everything that’s happening around me:

 

1. Acceptance

In my experience knowing and accepting things make everything easier. I’m not saying it will cure the pain you are experiencing but it can help you grieve. Being able to grieve is one of the most important steps in the process of healing.

Acknowledging the pain can make moving on easier. In due time, the pain will subside and the sadness will diminish.

 

2. Surround yourself with people who love you

Encouragement from people not just helps strengthen you but it also helps you regenerate.  A support system makes you feel safer and they can make you stay away from revisiting and rehashing old wounds.

If you only see the sticky mud after the rain, you will overlook the beautiful rainbow above. Positivity is the key. With friends, family and even pets, you will find the road to happiness passable.

 

3. Distract yourself

Keeping yourself busy makes you focus on other things. So, why not go and join activities that can energize your body? Activities like dancing, exercising or singing can be a better way to waste time. Staying at home all the time and not mingling with other people will just remind you of the pain.

So go out there and release all the tension in your system. You will notice that after a while, you can think clearly again and focus more on how you can achieve the happiness that you are aiming for.

 

4. Smile

Give yourself reasons to smile at people. Sometimes even the act of smiling itself can make you happier. When we are in pain, this is the first thing that we forget.

We tend to wallow too much of our losses that we forget our ability to smile. Smile and start focusing on what can make you happy.

 

5. Be positive

There is a saying that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life becomes hard and difficult we need to be resilient. We should not let it put us down.

It’s not the trouble that can bring us down. Looking at the positive side of things can bring wonderful resolutions to whatever problems we encounter. Make the sour sweet.

 

6. Calm yourself by writing

Whenever I feel down and I feel like the world is just against me, I try to calm myself by writing. Keeping a journal of how I feel makes me see things in a different light. Often it allows me to work through these emotions, making me feel better and making life seem extra beautiful.

 

7. Be thankful

Aside from being positive, being thankful for what we have is one of the keys to finding happiness, whatever situation you may be in.  Most of the time because we are in pain, we don’t see the bigger picture.

We only see what we don’t like, what we hate. But the fact that we are alive and the simple things that we have like the food on our table are reasons enough to be happy.

In life, we often encounter hardships and difficulties but this should never hinder us in continuing our pursuit of happiness. Because as what Audrey Hepburn said

“The most important thing is to enjoy your life—to be happy—it’s all that matters.”

 

How do you deal with serious misfortunes? Share your thoughts  in the comment section below.

enjoys writing for It’s OK to Die™, a self-improvement blog where Dr. Monica Williams-Murphy, MD educates Americans on the importance of preparation for death and dying. Dr. Murphy is a board-certified emergency physician, blogger, grief speaker and author of a famous end-of-life decision-making book It's OK to Die™. If you want Dr. Murphy to speak at your event or need more information then please visit OKtoDie.com

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20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Angel

    Mar 15, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    Great article, loved this, yes in hard time we have to accept things, and keep us buzzy in doing things we love to do. I tried with yoga and meditation.

  2. Jake

    Feb 17, 2014 at 4:46 am

    I was 11 years old and my mom past away from cancer . At that point in my life I was clueless on how to do things. From that point on my brother tried to do everything he can to raise me. Growing up from then I had so much anger and I still do now and I am 16 years old. I am a hockey player and have been told I am very talented however it seems everywhere I go I get screwed over. I got drafted late into the OHL where I was suppose to and told I was going to go earlier. in 2013 we moved out of the city to the middle of no where and I literally lost every single one of of my friends. I train every day to become better however I need to become better emotionally and spiritually in order for succes to come my way because right now everyday I feel so down and pissed off.

    • Wm. Derek Graham.

      Mar 30, 2014 at 11:32 am

      Hi Jake, Sorry to hear of your bereavement. You may still be struggling to come to terms with your Mum’s death. It may be helpful to contact CRUSE, a bereavement counselling service to help you work through your unresolved grief.

      Regards … William.

  3. Faisal Rehman

    Feb 6, 2014 at 3:10 pm

    Sure Cynthia,

    1st of all you should find something that can become your journal it can be a notebook, word processor, journaling application like RedNotebook, etc.
    Set up a routine (you can take your journal everywhere you go) write down your thoughts as they strike you. Journalling as part of a routine will make you more likely to stick with it. Don’t forget to date your entry. Write out and organize your thoughts and feelings, don’t feel self-conscious. You might stop writing as soon as you feel like you’ve exhausted your thoughts. Remember the more dedicated you are to your journal, the more valuable it becomes so keep writing.

    Hope I could help 🙂 if you have any questions you may tweet me @fazi_scorpion

  4. Cynthia

    Feb 3, 2014 at 4:48 am

    I want to begin a journal, do you now some tips of how can i start it?

  5. Faisal Rehman

    Feb 1, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    Aakash, awesome! Please let me know if you need help with anything 🙂

  6. Aakash

    Jan 31, 2014 at 3:44 am

    Hi faisal your article have inspired me. I will follow this 7ways as my situation is worse and undergoing so badly. I ll will take u as a role model and be happy with what I have

    • Faisal Rehman

      Feb 6, 2014 at 3:35 pm

      Aakash, keep me posted on what works out for you 😀

  7. Danica Rose Cole

    Jan 30, 2014 at 4:19 am

    This is one of the most inspiring stories I read online.:)

  8. Habee Shirzad

    Jan 28, 2014 at 10:38 am

    I Love it,

  9. ukecigarettereviews

    Jan 16, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Acceptance is the key, followed by smiling or smiling at others. Not as many smile back, but those that do are worth it!

  10. Mike Kawula

    Jan 15, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    Great post Faisal.

    I find Surrounding myself with others difficult as I don’t want my short-lived downs to impact others though I see your point how it can help.

    Great tips ~ Mike

  11. Gustavo Couto

    Jan 14, 2014 at 4:27 pm

    Great article Faisal, thank you for being brutally honest and facing this head-on. I appreciate your insights!

  12. cutieflexy

    Jan 14, 2014 at 6:25 am

    Rich and Great article. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Kgololo Mokala

    Jan 9, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Hi Faisal

    A great article man. just the kind of staff one needs to hear when emotions are taking tall. Great stuff man, will always remember this!

    • Faisal Rehman

      Jan 10, 2014 at 7:11 am

      I appreciate your feed back Kgololo.

  14. Naomi@businessstart-ups

    Jan 7, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    Hi Faisal,

    Just reading your post made me feel happier!

    I’m sorry to hear about your kidney disease – when being struck with illness it’s a downward spiral of emotions and a constant voice that doesn’t stop. “Why me!”. “What did I do wrong”. “What have I done to deserve this”.

    The one I mainly use on your list is Distract Yourself. Like most I’ve had time off over the Christmas period. But after so many days of not doing much I feel low, depressed and lazy. My cure is to get up really early and do whatever makes me happy. By the time I get home I feel better about having a productive day.

    Also one extra tip to keep me happy is having the worlds funniest children. The things they say, how they dance and unusual requests is MORE than enough to keep me happy and laughing.

    Thanks for useful read

    Naomi

    • Faisal Rehman

      Jan 9, 2014 at 10:57 am

      Naomi, glad I could help. Thanks for sharing your insights 🙂

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Life

6 Reasons Why You Should Never Glorify Failure After You’ve Failed

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Many people are ashamed of failure. If they so much as smell a whiff of failure, they quit instantly because the public notices it quickly. But you shouldn’t be ashamed of failure. A lot of people have failed. I’ve failed over and over again in my career, business, relationships and more. Yet, I keep trying because failure isn’t the final verdict. (more…)

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Life

How to Move Forward When All Seems Lost

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A few weeks ago, the relationship of my venture with a long-term client turned rocky. Losing them would mean a huge loss for my business, but it appeared like that’s where we were headed. My mind raced with unpleasant thoughts. Maybe the client had figured out that I couldn’t lead my team well. Maybe I was not good enough to be an entrepreneur. Maybe I was not good enough to do anything.

Why was the world so unfair?! Within moments, my anxiety had shot through the roof and my heart was racing faster than an F1 car engine. But I know I’m not the only one who feels like this.

Why Problems Overwhelm Us

As human beings, we’re good at solving problems, so they shouldn’t stress us out. Yet, they do just that. Why?

Consider some of these situations in life. When a relationship is headed for troubled waters, we wonder whether our partner loves us anymore. Our mind unearths memories of when we got dumped or rejected. We blame ourselves for falling for the wrong people and tell ourselves that we’re not worth receiving love.

How do you think the relationship will steer after that? If we cannot stick to a diet, we think of other times when we gave up. We remember what people said about things that we couldn’t do and ask ourselves, “were they right?” We tell ourselves that we don’t have what it takes to succeed at anything.

Do you think we’ll find the grit to stick to the diet after this? So here we are… thinking we’re not good enough to be entrepreneurs, to be loved, to get promoted, or to achieve our personal goals. Notice a pattern yet? We move in the wrong direction. The destination is to achieve the goal. And unless we stop giving into emotions and start addressing situations, we’ll keep failing to get there.

Negative emotions (and even extremely positive ones) blur our vision. The more we focus on them, the deeper we go into how we feel. We either get angry because things aren’t the way we want them to be, or get paralyzed by the fear of the worst possible outcome. This means we pull away from the one thing we must do to set things right — take action.

“If you can’t sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there and worrying. It’s the worry that gets you, not the loss of sleep.” – Dale Carnegie

How to Take Action in the Face of Problems

Most human beings are good at solving problems. Where we get blindsided is at diagnosing the right problem. To diagnose the right problem, we must address the situation instead of emotions. We must see things for what they are, collect facts on what we’re worrying about, and then ask ourselves, “What should I do next?”

In his book “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living”, Dale Carnegie wrote: “Neither you nor I nor Einstein nor the Supreme Court of the United States is brilliant enough to reach an intelligent decision on any problem without first getting the facts.”

To address the tricky situation with my client, I took the following three steps:

1. First, I acknowledged the feeling

Solving a problem doesn’t mean ignoring emotions. It’s important to acknowledge how you feel because it reveals the path, but domesticating your emotions is more important. I acknowledged how I felt by saying, “I feel anxious because the client might not want to work with us anymore and this will be a financial loss for us.”

Note how I said “I feel anxious” and not “I’m a loser.” If I had given into negative chatter, I wouldn’t have uncovered the direction to move in (the part after “because”). This is why domesticating emotions is crucial.

2. Next, I prepared for the worst

We often run from our worst fears rather than facing them despite knowing that the worst outcome rarely comes true. The result is that we stay stuck in fear instead of pushing beyond it. And we never discover what we’re really capable of, which sucks.

In my case, the worst meant losing the client. It would hurt but it was the truth. However, we could get more clients. Plus we already had other clients who helped us pay the bills. In other words, I wouldn’t have to live on the street.

The moment I accepted this, a huge weight got lifted off my chest. This prepared me for the third and final step.

“Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.” – Zig Ziglar

3. Lastly, I examined the situation

Examining a situation means setting aside your emotional baggage and focusing on facts. When you trust that you’ll be okay, you become better at diagnosing the real problem. Once I felt lighter, I could see things clearly.

I used the 5 Whys Technique (asking “why” five times) to figure out the real reason for the client’s dissatisfaction. Then I collected data on the issue and on what we had previously delivered.

Finally, I reached out to the CEO of the client and held a detailed and constructive discussion based on my findings. Within four days, the CEO and I were back to the way things were before.

The best way to prepare for tomorrow is to give today your best. I’m not sure whether the issue with the client got resolved for good or whether the client won’t pack up and leave one day. However, I am sure that I’m prepared to handle such cases better today than I was yesterday.

Control your emotions instead of letting them run amok. Accept things for what they are instead of what you want them to be. Be realistic instead of delusional. Address the situation instead of succumbing to emotions.

Don’t preempt what lies ten miles ahead and get paralyzed by fear. Address what lies clearly in front of you and keep moving. One day you’ll be surprised about how close to your destination you are.

How do you move forward when all hope seems to be lost? Share your advice below!

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8 Effective Tips to Improve Your Emotional Wellbeing

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You know what they say, “Health Is Wealth”. But, more often than not, we only mean it in the context of physical health. There’s no question that being fit is the world’s greatest treasure. Unfortunately, not a lot of us take time out to look after our emotional health and wellbeing.

Let’s not forget – it’s ‘Mind Over Matter’. So, if you are able to take control of your emotions, thoughts, how you feel through the day and how you respond to myriad situations; there’s nothing quite like it. When you become the master of your emotions; health, prosperity, and basically all good things are bound to follow you.

With that said, here are 8 surefire ways that will improve your emotional wellbeing:

1. Practice Mindfulness

Half the time, we don’t even know what we’re thinking or how we’re feeling. That’s because we let our minds operate on autopilot. It’s time to take control of your mind. Be aware of what and how you feel throughout the day. The upside to this practice is that you can detect negative emotions right on the onset and quickly change them and their corresponding feeling.

Feelings of anger, jealousy, hatred; they are not good for the mind, soul, or the body. Paying close attention to the spectrum of emotions you experience throughout the day, will help you detect the negative ones and kick them away before they fester deep enough to take away your happiness and emotional health.

2. Stay Physically Active

As you engage in physical activities, your brain produces a whole bunch of feel-good hormones such as endorphins and dopamine. These hormones are what causes the ‘elated’ or ‘euphoric’ feeling. Being physically active uplifts your mood and your outlook towards life. It readies you to take the challenges more head-on instead of becoming overwhelmed by the littlest of inconvenience.

You are better able to analyze tough situations and take a more proactive rather than a reactive approach. It’s no question physical health is in direct proportion with emotional health. A healthy mind resides in a healthy body and vice versa.

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” – Sid Garza-Hillman

3. Get Sufficient Sleep

Ever noticed how you feel depressed and cranky, and just out of focus the day you fail to get a good night’s sleep? Well, if you fail to get sufficient sleep for a couple of days, you are bound to feel more depressed, cranky and eventually more prone to a host of negative emotions. Research shows that sleep deprivation sends amygdala – our brain’s emotional response center into overdrive.

Amygdala controls our immediate emotional responses. When it becomes overactive, we become more reactive rather than active. We become more irritable, angry and anxious. A good night’s sleep is vital to improving your emotional wellbeing.

4. Develop a New Hobby

Learn to swim. Try arts and crafts. How about painting? Swimming is a ‘happy’ activity. You get to make new friends and stay fit. Arts and crafts, as we all know, tends to have a relaxing effect on the mind and the nerves.

Just the process of creating something from scratch makes you confident and gets those creative juices flowing. Similarly, painting helps you express yourself. All these factors together create a ‘happy you’. The one who likes to engage in new things instead of resisting change or difficult situations.

5. Eat Healthy

Ever heard of the phrase, “You are what you eat”? Well, it’s true to the last syllable. When you eat foods rich in salt, sodium, fat – you are bound to feel lethargic. It takes longer for the body to digest such foods. That means the body is forced to deprive organs of blood and use it for the digestion purpose.

Result? You become lazy, moody, not ready to take any responsibility which leads to feeling cranky and irritable. On the other hand, eating fibrous vegetables, fruits, salads, and complex sugars keeps you upbeat and healthy.

6. Laugh Your Heart Out

Laughter is the best medicine. That is why they have a dedicated ‘laughter session’ in yoga studios. You don’t even have to mean it. The simple act of spreading your cheeks and pretending to laugh sends a signal to your body that you are happy.

And what happens when you are happy? Your brain releases happy hormones like dopamine, serotonin and what not. In fact, many studies have gone so far as to stipulate that laughter alone is capable of treating all kinds of physical ailments. Why should emotional ailments be any different?

7. Try Relaxation Techniques

‘’Visualization technique’’ where you imagine yourself in a happy place is a surefire way to calm your nerves if you find yourself distressed. You may also try praying to elate yourself. Praying is good for the mind and the soul.

Controlled breathing or ‘biofeedback technique’ are some other relaxation techniques that can tame how you feel and even your bodily functions. Try surrounding yourself with aromatherapy or scented candles because the smell is a big factor in governing how we feel.

“Positive emotional energy is the key to health, happiness and wellbeing. The more positive you are, the better your life will be in every area.” – Brian Tracy

8. Count Your Blessings

We all have so much to be thankful for. It could be a friend who stands by you or a happy family. Good health. Financial freedom. Make a list of all the things that you feel grateful for in your life. If it’s a person, be sure to communicate your feelings and express your gratitude.

You will feel so much happier. Happiness is the diet of a healthy mind and an intelligent emotional response mechanism. You could also try writing a poem or simply expressing your gratitude through the power of prayers.

There are so many ways to become emotionally intelligent and not one of them requires any investment or special skills. Practically anyone and everyone can do it. All you need is the will and the desire.

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Life

How You Can Use the Power of Gratitude to Your Advantage

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The word gratitude has been tossed around, but do you know exactly what it means or how to implement it into your life? Someone has probably told you in your life, “Express more gratitude.” Well, that sounds like a great idea, but if you don’t know what gratitude is, how can you fully express it in your life? It’s a concept that once you grasp, it will change your life. (more…)

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