When you’re unhappy it can seem like life is never going to change. And no matter how others tell you to ‘snap out of it’, or that ‘things will get better’, if you’re that miserable these words – no matter how well meant – can simply make you feel worse.
So perhaps it’s time to take your unhappiness into your own hands. And the first step to doing that is to understand why you might be feeling so down. Let’s take a look at some important reasons that might be at the root of your sad feelings.
Do you constantly compare yourself to others?
OK, so it’s natural in some cases to look at comparisons. But when it comes to doing it a lot of the time, this can be truly damaging to your self esteem. Sure, your work colleague seems to be doing better than you right now, but has that (will that) always been the case?
Your neighbour looks soooo glamorous – far more so than you? But does that make her a better person? Of course not. And you’re probably far better than her at so many other things.
These are only a couple of examples. But you can see that if you constantly look at comparisons, then it’s only going to be damaging to you. Stop judging yourself against others, and instead look at what you do well, and you may well begin to feel a difference in your happiness levels.
Are you a pessimistic person?
So, we can’t change our natural personality. But what we can do is become aware of it, and do our best to think in a more positive manner. Always looking on the downside of a situation will certainly bring you down. So rather than choosing to focus on what is not good, look at the opposite – more cheery side of life. You’ll be amazed at how doing this can change your happiness levels for the better.
Are you materialistic?
Of course, we all like the niceties in life. But ultimately, having ‘stuff’ isn’t the basis of a happy life. Rather than focusing on material things, try to discover what you can actually do to bring more joy into your life. For example, take up a hobby such as walking, hiking, helping out in a charity shop, volunteering for under privileged kids… Or something along those lines. You’ll be amazed at how such a simple act can change your outlook on life.
Are your ‘friends’ making you miserable?
It really is a truism that what’s going on around us has a massive impact in how we feel. So if you’re hanging out with pessimistic people – or ones who judge you, put you down, or simply don’t make you feel good about yourself – then you need to change them!
If the folks you hang around with are negative, they truly will influence how you feel too. So be sure to choose your friends wisely.
Are you hung up on former mistakes?
Listen! We all make mistakes in life. Be they relationship ones, professional ones, personal ones… But the biggest mistake we can actually make is to get too hung up on the past. Because if we don’t let it go, then we can’t move on. And that means we simply don’t allow ourselves to become happy again.
If you’re still hung up over perceived past mistakes, then becoming aware of it is the first step. Talk about it with trusted friends or family. Or if you truly can’t move on, then seek professional help.
Are you as healthy as you could be?
Make no mistake, being unhealthy can make you unhappy. If you constantly snack on junk food, never get out and exercise, or have a disturbed sleep pattern, this has a massive impact on your well being. OK, you don’t have to become a health food fanatic or a gym junkie, but making small efforts to up your fitness levels and eat a healthy diet will have an incredible impact on how happy you feel.