People are always searching for things that make them happy. For example, many people work very hard to improve their employment because they want to find a better job to make themselves happy. Other people search for happiness by purchasing things they want. It is not bad to search for happiness, but many people do not understand that lasting happiness does not depend on having certain things. It doesn’t depend on the circumstances of a person’s life. It depends more on how life is lived and people are loved. There are things that people can do to live a happy life regardless of their situation. In order to live a happy life, people should build relationships, be grateful, and help others.
The first thing that people should do to live a happy life is build relationships with other people. Building relationships can include both making new friends and strengthening relationships that already exist with friends and family members. These relationships lead to greater happiness because people who have strong connections with other people are less lonely, especially in difficult times. They have people who they can talk to and people who can offer comfort to them. Another reason that strong connections can increase happiness is that they create a network of people who can offer advice. Knowing that there are friends who can offer this advice to help solve a problem can help people feel happier. Strong relationships also lead to greater feelings of belonging and security, which in turn, lead to greater happiness. Building these relationships is an essential step to living a happy life.
In addition to nurturing relationships, people who want to be happy should be grateful. People who are grateful open their eyes to see all of the good things in their lives, and they express gratitude to people who help them. Many people have noticed that by opening their eyes to see the good things they have and choosing to have gratitude, their perspective changes. They spend more time focusing on positive thoughts instead of focusing on things that are negative or difficult. Thoughts create perspective, so intentionally creating positive thoughts will lead to a more positive perspective. Regardless of struggles they have, they choose to focus on the gifts they can see. Gratitude can change people’s perspective and help them be happier, regardless of their situation.
Finally, serving others can make people happier. Serving others can include doing simple things like listening to a friend who is having a hard time or preparing a meal to share with someone who is sick. These simple acts not only improve another person’s life, but they also bring happiness to the person who is serving. This happiness is a natural result of lifting another person’s burden. Helping others also helps in the other areas of building happiness: it strengthens relationships with others and it helps people feel more gratitude. When people serve others, they can become good friends by showing how much they care and want to help. People feel more gratitude because when they see the problems other people face, they find ways that their life is blessed. Serving others is an essential key to living a happier life.
If people want to have a happier life, they should serve others, be grateful, and strengthen their relationships with other people. Each of these things focuses on people and perspective rather than money and material possessions. People bring joy to other people in a way that possessions can never imitate. Perspective can make a lasting impact on a person’s life in a way that a promotion simply can’t. Regardless of the circumstances of an individual’s life, that individual can choose to focus on happiness in a real, genuine way if he wants to. Finding lasting happiness is really a simple search. That search begins as soon as people start looking beyond temporary things that only bring temporary happiness.
Read one of the two Process Example Essays on the following pages to complete this exercise.