Can you make everyone happy? And if you can, should you?
Here’s the short answer to both of these questions: no.
How to make everyone happy is an issue that bothers many of us. We are often torn between our duty to ourselves and others (particularly our loved ones) when it comes to the subject of happiness.
This is such a contentious issue that we decided to tackle this topic head-on. Let’s look at why we feel the need to put others’ happiness before our own.
We’re also going to give some advice about nurturing happiness, and what this means for your emotional health.
How To Make Everyone Happy
We all have people in our lives that we want to make happy. These may be our family members, romantic partners, colleagues, or friends. We cannot stand to see them unhappy or having a bad day. This is perfectly normal, and part of what makes us human.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to make others happy. The problem comes in when we despair because we cannot figure out how to make everyone happy. This often leads to a shift of focus from our growth and development to that of others’.
Why is this dangerous? By constantly putting others’ needs ahead of our own, we risk losing sight of our own needs in the process.
Is It Possible to Make Everyone Happy?
It is possible to make other people happy, perhaps even many people. But it is not possible to make everyone that you know or come across happy!
This is because we are all unique individuals with different needs and different dreams.
No single formula for happiness exists that will please everyone. However, there are many ways in which you can make most people a little happier.
What are some of these ways?
Spend time showing support to a friend, even if it’s on a phone call. Listen to your partner talk about their hard day at work, or your kids talk about what happened at school. Share a laugh with a colleague on your lunch break.
Little random acts of kindness can go a long way to making people happy, so do not underestimate them. Greet a stranger on the street. Make eye contact and smile at your neighbor as you pass by.
Should You Try To Make Everyone Happy?
It is human nature to worry about someone being happy. It’s normal to worry about making people happy!
But while it is commendable to want to make someone happy, it does not mean that you need to make everyone happy, does it?
If it were truly possible to make everyone happy, at the expense of your happiness, would you want to?
If your answer is no, it should be! Your happiness is important. Do what you can to bring love and light into the life of others, but never forget your duty to yourself.
Making other people happy can make you happy, but only when it does not conflict with your values and goals. Taking care of others’ happiness should not be an obstacle to your own.
A good way to achieve your happiness, and work on the happiness of others, is to engage in community service of some kind.
Charitable work and volunteerism are excellent means to make a difference in others’ lives. This can make them happy while bringing joy to yourself as well.
Does Focusing On Yourself Mean You’re Being Selfish?
No! You have to focus on yourself before you can focus on others.
It is your duty and responsibility to promote your emotional health. You, and you alone, know what makes you happy. Just as you should not be relying on others for your happiness, they should not be relying on you for theirs.
Self-love and self-care are never selfish. They are essential for your emotional and mental well-being, and even your physical health.
How To Be Happy When Others Might Not Be
Few people can honestly say that they never have a bad day or experience a bad mood.
We all bear the weight of negative thoughts from time to time. Life can be stressful, and some of us are better equipped to deal with that.
Just because someone in your circle of family and friends is having a bad day, it doesn’t mean that you have to.
We understand that you want to be there for them and make them happy. But if their happiness is reliant on you sacrificing your own needs, think again.
The suggestions below are not meant to make you selfish or self-centered. Quite the contrary, they are designed to make you happier within yourself, and as a result, make your loved ones happier too!
Start today, and you’ll soon learn that how to make everyone happy is by making yourself happy first.
You need to have the capacity to help other people in life. If you’re doing badly, you can’t be a positive force in the lives of others. Look after yourself so that you can look after others!
Let’s go over how to be happy when those around you might not be.
1. Spend Time Being Your Own Best Friend
We all feel good when we have friends to share things with.
Having a friend to share your feelings with and receive support from is great. But do you know what is even better? Being your own best friend!
This means nurturing your happiness, thinking and speaking kindly about yourself, and cutting yourself some slack when you are having a difficult day. Don’t worry, a bad day inevitably comes to a close, and things usually perk up soon.
Be kind to yourself! Consider spending time doing things like having your favorite takeout food or simply enjoying a hobby you’re passionate about.
Listen to some uplifting songs. Such things are important for the soul!
Want to bring a smile to someone’s face? Start with your own! Read this article on how to find what makes you happy in life.
Learn to indulge more in what brings a smile to your face, like cooking yourself a nice meal on a bad day. You will find that you are in a better position to make someone else smile!
We’re not saying that you should isolate yourself! Hanging out with close friends is essential for your mental and emotional health. But remember to surround yourself with positive people, who will be supportive and nurturing.
2. Be The Happy Person That Inspires Others
When you are surrounded by unhappy, negative people, you have three choices: Be as gloomy as they are, flee the scene, or be happy despite the prevailing mood.
Being happy should never be hard work. If it feels like it is, some changes need to be made.
When you look for reasons to be happy, even during tough times, you will inspire others to do the same. Rather than let their negative feelings rub off on you, let your positivity rub off on them, and be the reason someone smiles today.
It is possible to brighten someone’s day just by being joyful and in a good mood. Never feel guilty about being in a good mood, even if others around you are not.
When your friends, colleagues, children, or partner see that you have inner joy, and are full of positivity, they will want this for themselves too.
Feeling happy yourself can be the best way to make others happier too.
If despite your best efforts at being a beacon of positivity, the naysayers still wallow in negativity, let it go, and move on. Surrounding yourself with persistently negative or unkind people will not serve you in your quest for inner peace.
3. Show Kindness – It Makes Both You And Others Happy
A sincere compliment, a few positive comments or a kind gesture on your part may be all that it takes to reach someone through a cloud of despair.
Remember that much like happiness, kindness is contagious.
Acts of kindness don’t have to be grand, sweeping gestures to have a lasting impact.
A secret note telling your partner or close friend that you love them is an example of a small act with a big impact. How about a call to one of your elderly relatives who may live far away and be struggling with loneliness?
If you need more ideas, reflect upon your own experiences and share those things that make you feel happy. Give away a cherished book, bake them your favorite cookies, or praise them publicly.
Performing acts of kindness is not only good for the recipient, but it has been shown to increase our own happiness as well.
4. Make Sure That Your Thoughts Are Your Own
It is far too easy to get swept up in public opinion about sociopolitical challenges and other issues in the world.
Social media is especially problematic, as we are constantly bombarded by others’ thoughts and opinions, some of which are pessimistic.
Read the Optimist Creed, and avoid falling into the trap of collective negativity. Unplug your devices for a while, and give the social media platforms a break.
Keep yourself busy with pleasurable activities where you can be alone with your thoughts for a while. Go for a hike, or walk along the beach at sunset.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to stay informed of current events and social trends. The danger lies in the exposure to mass negativity. Many of these social media platforms are a breeding ground for the pessimistic and even downright harmful thoughts of others. Avoid this as much as possible.
Watch that when you post anything yourself, you do so with respect for others’ views. Nobody should be disrespectful!
5. Listen To Your Heart And Follow Your Dreams
Not everyone will agree with your thoughts, hopes, and beliefs. This is fine – they don’t have to.
When it comes to your goals and dreams for your future, don’t expect everyone to understand those, either.
When you’re wondering how to make everyone happy, leave your dreams out of it! These should not be sacrificed just to keep everyone around you comfortable.
When you follow your destiny, a magical thing happens. You build confidence and self-esteem and start to enjoy greater life satisfaction. You may also find that your loved ones become happier as a result.
Live in the moment, and celebrate every milestone that you achieve. Your long-term goals matter, but so do your short-term ones! Celebrate the small wins too.
When others see the joy that following your path brings, they will be more likely to accept and support your dreams and be happy for, and with, you.
It is simply not possible to make everybody happy all of the time. And this is not something we should be striving for, either. It is not your job to make other people happy; it is your job to be happy with them, for them, and sometimes even despite them.
Focusing on making everyone happy at the expense of your happiness will only lead to emotional and mental health issues down the line.
We are all of far more benefit to our loved ones when we are truly happy ourselves. Check out the Do Happy App to promote happiness and positivity in your life.