While it might feel impossible to learn to be happy with what you have, it’s a skill that can be developed over time.
Happiness shouldn’t be conditional on external factors. If you’re looking to be happy right where you are, with what you have, you’ll need to look inside yourself.
We all have different things and want different things in life. If you’re not happy with what you have, who’s to say you’ll be happy with more?
True happiness comes from within, and we’re going to help you to unlock that.
Do You Need More To Be Happy?
The answer to this question is not a simple yes or no. There are certain things that all human beings need to be happy. These include shelter, food, and water.
If our basic needs are not being met, it becomes incredibly difficult to be happy or even to focus on happiness. If we don’t have a stable home or know where our next meal is coming from, those concerns will completely occupy our life.
If that is your situation, then you may need more to be happy. Your basic needs must be met before you can truly focus on self-fulfillment or happiness.
For those fortunate to have a stable life where your basic requirements are met, you probably don’t need more to be happy.
In today’s society, there is a constant need for more – more money, more consumption, more things. It’s easy to get caught up in this spiral of feeling like you need more to be happy.
It’s important to take a step back and ask ourselves why we want more. Sometimes, we genuinely want something. Unfortunately, often we want more because we feel like this will be the thing that finally makes us happy.
This isn’t how happiness works. We can’t rely on material things or purchases for happiness. If we do this, we get caught in an endless cycle of always wanting more.
The happiness that you get from those new, trendy shoes won’t necessarily last. This happiness may well be temporary! Once you have the item you’ve been wanting, you might immediately desire the next thing to make you happier.
The great news is that you can learn to be happy with what you have, right where you are, with exactly what you own. Happiness is within reach – but you might need to make some significant changes.
Be Happy With What You Have
Luckily, there are many ways to be happy with what you have. If you stay focused on your well-being and practice these tips, you’ll feel happier in all aspects of your life.
1. Focus On The Present, Not Your Entire Life
When we try to plan out our whole life, there is a good chance that it will feel impossible to find joy.
We need to take a step back and look at our current situation. What does our life look like in the present moment?
Don’t get caught up in trying to control your future. This can look like obsessing over a promotion, a new car, or a new house.
Happiness doesn’t come from trying to map out your life, but rather from being present in the moment, and being grateful for what you do have.
2. Feel Satisfied By Practicing Gratitude
One of the best ways to be happy with what you have is to cultivate gratitude. Being thankful for what you have gives you a sense of perspective that can make you much happier.
Take the time to think about and appreciate everything that you have—from the positive relationships in your life to your possessions to your personal attributes. Make it a habit to recognize the small things that make up your life, and say “thank you.”
Consider keeping a journal where you list all the things that you are grateful for. Writing them down helps to make them more concrete and gives you something to refer back to when you need a reminder.
You can use one of the best apps for happiness if you want to do this digitally and always have your gratitude list with you. You’ll soon realize that you have a lot to be thankful for.
3. Let Go Of The Need For Instant Gratification
You might have noticed that you try to find immediate solutions to your unhappiness. This is partly because of your brain chemistry.
Dopamine, the pleasure-seeking neurotransmitter, will spike when we get a shiny new thing to play with. Oh, yes – our brains do work a little bit like toddlers.
This spike is then followed by a crash that makes us feel worse, which results in more pleasure-seeking behavior.
Social media is designed around this constant need for more, which makes it hard to stop scrolling on Instagram. Each post is a tiny dopamine hit and makes us crave the next one.
We demand immediate solutions to our problems, which makes sense in our fast-paced world. But we can gain a lot of peace by slowing down and stopping the hunt for instant gratification.
Consciously choose to read a good book instead of staring at your phone or go outside for some time in nature. When you live in the moment, you become content with what you already have.
4. Focus On Your Relationships
Meaningful connection is one of the best ways to make you feel happy. You should spend time with people, both friends and family, who make you feel good and who bring out the best in you.
It’s important to focus on cultivating relationships that are deep and meaningful. You want friends who ask how you are doing and mean it, not just in a superficial way. Your relationships need to work both ways, so make sure you are listening to others and showing your appreciation for them too.
There are many ways to keep in touch with friends and loved ones. Spending time with close friends doesn’t have to mean spending money. You can organize a game night, a dinner party, or even just meet for coffee. If you’re unable to be physically present, you can connect over the phone or video call.
When you have meaningful relationships, you’ll be more content with life and focus on the things that really matter.
5. Avoid Comparison With Other People
Comparison truly is the thief of joy.
When we are constantly measuring ourselves up against others, it is very easy to feel inferior. We can feel like we need to spend more to buy happiness. But this isn’t the solution. It just feeds the need for external validation instead of looking honestly at our own lives.
Social media is designed to make us compare ourselves endlessly with others. But it is important to remember that social media is just a highlight reel of people’s lives.
People don’t post their struggles, and their lives aren’t as perfect as they seem. It’s possible that what looks like someone else’s success is just luck or a cleverly staged photo.
If you stop comparing yourself to others, you will more easily appreciate what you have and be more content with your own life.
6. Identify What Makes You Happy
While this article is full of useful tips, each person is unique and not everything will work for everyone. That is why it is important to be honest with yourself about what makes you happy.
Work out what makes you the happiest and spend more of your time doing that.
It is a lot easier to be happy with what you have when you consciously choose activities or people that bring you joy.
This is another time when journaling can be useful. Record how you feel before and after doing an activity, and see how it impacts your mood. You might also be interested in using an accountability calendar to keep track of your progress.
7. Hold Space For Negative Emotions
It might seem counterintuitive to talk about feeling sad in an article about being happy. But life is complicated and there will always be bad days.
Your need for more can result from trying to escape bad feelings. But we are here to remind you that there is nothing wrong with feeling bad.
To feel great, you need to let yourself experience all of your emotions rather than run away from them. Instead of trying to bury negative emotions, let them breathe! By paying attention to your feelings, you can learn from them and figure out what you actually need.
If you’re struggling to bounce back from negative thoughts about yourself, try including some powerful self-love affirmations in your day. Remember that it’s normal to feel down sometimes – once you give yourself permission to process these emotions, things will begin to look up.
There will always be more money, nicer possessions and bigger opportunities; learning to be happy with what you have is an important life-changing lesson. The sooner you master it, the happier you will be.
Focus on what you do have, build meaningful connections, practice gratitude, and resist the urge to compare yourself with others.
When you are honest with yourself, take action to make positive change, and stay connected with what matters most in life, you can discover true contentment and enjoy life with what you have.
For more tips and advice on cultivating happiness, make sure to check out the a little dose of happy blog!