October 26, 2016

The 10 Commandments of Happier-ness

This article originally appeared at www.happier.com and was written by NATALY KOGAN. Here’s a link to the original piece, which appears in its entirety below! Here, at Happiest Mama, we focus on staying positive in motherhood. Read the 10 commandments below, and think about how they apply to motherhood, parenting, and your day-to-day struggles and strengths. 

The 10 Commandments of Happier-Ness
These lessons, written in as few words as I could muster, are some of the most important ones that have helped me — after decades of chasing all the wrong kind of happiness in all the wrong ways — nurture a sense of well-being that feels real and one that I’m not afraid with disappear any minute.

  1. Happier-ness isn’t something you feel, but something you do. It’s a skill every one of us has and can improve by regularly practicing the scientifically-proven habits of gratitude, kindness, and mindfulness.
  2. It’s OK to be not OK. True emotional well-being is not the absence of negative emotions. It’s the practice of strengthening your emotional immune system so that you learn how to be OK even when not everything is OK.
  3. “I’ll be happy when…” is the surest way to never feel happy enough. Genuine emotional wellness can only be nurtured from within.
  4. Gratitude, kindness, and mindfulness are the three anchors of happier-ness practice. Make them a non-negotiable part of your day, put them on your to-do list, and do them even if you don’t feel like it.
  5. Be Here Now (however now is). When you become awake to what is and how you feel right now, without judgment or expectations, you gain clarity and strength.
  6. You can practice gratitude in every moment, even when life sucks. When you look for something, however small, to appreciate, your brain releases serotonin and dopamine, both of which make you feel better. Gratitude is magic medicine that never runs out.
  7. Be kind without expecting anything in return. Do it because it feels better to be kind than not. You experience 100% of emotions you give to others, so when you act kindly, you feel kindness towards yourself.
  8. Seek meaning more often than happiness. The simplest acts, if meaningful to you, will bring you closer to feeling full, alive, and happier.
  9. Don’t try to be fearless. Accept your fear and move into love, commitment, passion, and dedication for what you are doing.
  10. You can’t give what you don’t have. Taking care of your emotional well-being is the greatest gift you can give to people you love.

Thank you, Nataly, for sharing! If you loved this piece, be sure to check out this piece about  Personal Growth in Motherhood and read more from Nataly at www.happier.com


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  1. I love the concept of “happier”-ness. It’s always a process.

  2. Great reminders! I feel lucky that I’m naturally a glass half full type of person. But, even though I’m usually upbeat and easy going, stuff still pulls me down sometimes. Reminders like this put things back into perspective.

  3. I love this. This is a great reminder that I am just a human.

    One Awesome Momma

  4. I loved these! I can’t pick a favorite, but I will say that her third point really spoke to me. And I think it kind of goes along with her sixth point. I feel like those times when I’m feeling sad or upset or unsatisfied about something if I can remember to be grateful and appreciate the things I do have then I can be happier and can take the steps needed to improve my situation.

  5. Love these! Especially, “Be kind without expecting anything in return.”. In my opinion, people that can’t do this are never happy.

  6. These are great reminders. I was going to point out which ones stood out to me, but I love them all. I also find strength in Jesus and the truth of God’s word, which brings a hope that surpasses all understanding.

  7. Some great reminders here. Especially about finding gratitude in all moments – even the rough ones!

  8. I totally agree with #3! Constantly thinking “I’ll be happy when…” is one of my biggest downfalls and really gets in the way of actually being happy! Being here in the now (#5) is what truly bring happiness! Great encouraging post =)

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