How would your life be different if you could have regular support, deep connection, and inspiration that you could count on?
Life without love and friendship is empty. Work without support, collaboration, and a shared vision make for a lonely path. As human beings, we are wired for relationship, and connecting is crucial. Families, businesses, and communities disintegrate without genuine connection. Happier living requires connection with oneself and each other!
Sure, we can climb the mountain of life alone, but it's not as safe and isn't nearly as fun! Going it alone isn't what we need to be our best and it certainly doesn't lead to happiness. Sometimes we need a helping hand or a little encouragement.
Relationships teach us about ourselves; relationships bring life to our living.
Five Keys to Create More Happiness and Fulfillment
1 Build quality, reciprocal relationships.
Spend time nurturing your personal and business relationships. Create value and hold yourself and others accountable to a high standard of reciprocity so that everyone, including yourself, is nurtured and supported. People pleasers tend to over-give and create dependency, denying themselves their own enrichment. Your happiness and success are part of the greater good; don't relinquish your right to respect and equity. When you excel, everyone benefits! When you share your gifts, everyone rises. And visa versa.
Reciprocity requires mindful giving without sacrificing one's well-being. It's as important to receive as it is to give. Ask for help when you need it while also building the muscles of self-reliance. Seek interdependence and balance giving and receiving. If you're a giver, receive more and allow others to nurture you more often. Prioritize rest, exercise, and self-care so when you give, it's from a full cup—or better yet, an overflowing cup!
If you tend to keep to yourself or your time is more me-centric, take time to give and help more. Mentor someone; make it a practice to reach out to new people in the community and welcome them. When a colleague is stuck, give them a lending hand. Team up with friends to help them get that yard landscaped or write a recommendation for a student going off to college. Everything we send out comes back to us tenfold—for better or for worse!
2 Use competition as a springboard to be your best self. Competition at its extreme can be cutthroat. However, healthy competition keeps us awake, strong, and vibrant. The best form of competition is competing with ourselves and beating our best from yesterday! When we do compete with others, whether in sports, academics, or business, it challenges us, gives us a measurement, and shows us where we need to grow.
Competition requires us to be knowledgeable, creative, and stretch to be our best self (or to be our best as a friend, spouse, parent, employee, or boss). Even that woman your husband is eyeing with the great figure might be inviting you to drop that extra weight and get back in shape. Or that parent you admire (or are secretly jealous of) holds the keys for you to set better boundaries or be kinder or more playful or conscious. It doesn't matter what area of life you find yourself inspired or challenged or jealous; those feelings are an invitation (or wake-up call) to be your finest! Don't shirk from the challenge; lean in and roll up your sleeves.
3 Live outside your comfort zone and develop new habits. We must learn to be comfortable outside of our comfort zone—that's where growth lies! Taking risks to exceed yesterday's best is a key to faster growth. When a person is feeling stuck in life, they're often in the deep groove of a comfort zone or haven't forgiven themselves for some imagined failure. Don't let that happen to you. Leave your comfort zone and learn to be comfortable with uncomfortability. If you do stretch, happier living awaits you!
Be bold. Be brave in the journey of becoming!
Related reading: "What Is Mindfulness? And Why All the Hubbub?"
4 Take daily actions toward what's truly important to you. You’re headed toward a collision in your life if you’re caught up in the urgent or dramatic. If you don’t keep your eye on your values and a compelling vision for your life and business, no one else will. Whenever you lose sight of your values, the quality of your life will suffer. If you fail to keep top of mind what's valuable to you, mundane minutiae will consume your time and energy.
Get perspective by zooming forward. Ask yourself, "In one year or five years, how much time did I spend on inconsequential things?" Ensure that every day includes small and big actions toward what is most valuable to you. Create a healthy work-life balance and remember to spend quality time with those you cherish!
5 Live an intentional life.
Because our brain is a great problem seeker and solver, a human tendency is to look for, find, and then fix problems (or expend energy ignoring them!). When we build a heat-seeking-problem missile, life gets small, and problems get big. We start feeling like life isn't fun anymore and wonder when we'll ever be happy.
Happiness is a mindset. Try living intentionally and design your life from your greatest aspirations and what brings you joy rather than by happenstance. Take time for mindfulness. Replace frustration with gratitude and criticism with compassion.
No matter what, give yourself the gift of personal growth and transformation! Reach out and connect; make our communities vibrant by giving your best self to the world.
And if one of these keys resonated with you, grab hold of it! Try it on. Practice the key. Massage it and break it in with zeal. (Stretch and challenge yourself with gentleness.) Practice the new habit until it becomes second nature and perfectly comfortable.
And if you'd like a partner to mentor you along the way, Heartmanity's specialty is transformation!