Since ‘growing up’ in recent years (although, I am using that term loosely…) I have come to realise how much we as individuals are in charge of our own happiness. It’s something that got me thinking, and questioning of all of the things that make me happy, whether I focus on the happy moments in my life enough, and prioritise happiness in general.
When we are younger, we rely on our parents to create the fun for us, and even when we get to school, our friendship groups usually have a big impact in terms of making plans and socialising.
University is a different barrel – you have to be outgoing and confident in order to create friendship groups, and try new things, go to new places, and generally, get out of your comfort zone. In theory, the only thing you have in common with people at university is the fact that you are both studying in the same place… but that’s also the exciting thing too – you get to meet a whole new kettle of fish.
Once you’ve finished uni and enter into adult life, we become more and more in charge of our own happiness. All of a sudden, we aren’t getting student loans, our bills aren’t included and our friends are spread all across the country.
This is the first time that our life is in our own hands – no more parents, flatmates, lecturers: The start of having to think about where are pennies are going, saving to buy a house, having a baby.
But as we get more busy with life, it becomes increasingly harder to do the little things that used to make us happy; as much as we love it, life tends to get in the way: We have a whole new set of responsibilities.
The thing is, if we dwell on that fact, life becomes hard. It becomes really hard. Feeling as though you have no time is one of the worst feelings in the world – because it’s simply not true.
Yes, we spend the majority of our time at work; but without it, we wouldn’t get very far.
We still have early mornings for a breakfast date with your boyfriend, evenings off to spend sipping cocktails with your girls, and weekends to catch up with your family. When you start to prioritise your happiness into the free time we do have, your life becomes more fulfilled and you become more content.
I’m not saying you need to do something every evening in order to feel happy, but instead focus on the cosy evenings in as taking a well-deserved break, the new dish you want to try cooking as a chance to experiment in the kitchen, and having people over as a way to save money but spending time with those who mean the most to you.
If you start to focus on how tired and sluggish you feel, how you’ve got so much to do, but no time to do it, thats exactly how you’re teaching your brain to think.
Yes there are always going to be other factors that influence how happy you are, but it is up to you how you go about these situations. If you focus on the negativity, then your mood will plummet. I’ve found it hard to change the way my mind works, and from time to time, things still do get to me more than they should; but once I remember that I am in control, and I am the only one who can warrant how much something is going to get to me, then it is much easier to get my life back on track and into a happy place.
Last but not least, I am always an advocate for having something to look forward to, whether thats a night out with your friends, a weekend away with your boyfriend, a family gathering or a trip abroad – having something on the horizon is definitely a way of making the most out of your life.
Life is what you make it.