Get to know yourself
In order to know what will make you happy, you first need to know yourself. (Duh!) We all have our personal preferences and individual character traits. What will make one person happy will make another person miserable. If you dislike big crowds, loud noises and disco dancing, you’re probably not a party person and guess what? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, you glorious little introvert. Your idea of bliss might be snuggling up in front of the TV to binge watch your favourite show whilst drinking green juice. There’s nothing wrong with that either. (In fact it sounds delightful, can I come round?) You might get your kicks doing something kinky as fuck and, as long as you’re not hurting anyone, knock yourself out, you sexy weirdo. My point is, get to know yourself and you’re already halfway to happy.
Value your health
I believe that without your health you have very little. When you don’t feel comfortable or confident in your own body and mind, then you find it harder to feel comfortable and confident in general. Feeling unwell is so distracting. Nobody is on top form when they aren’t well. (In fact, most of us when we’re ill, are snappy little gitstacks and with understandable reason because feeling poorly absolutely sucks.) If you’ve ever been very unwell, you might recall the magnificent relief when you finally start to rally. There are of course things we can’t do much about; accidents and certain illnesses and diseases can befall the best of us no matter what we do, but there is an enormous amount we can do to maintain and improve our health no matter who, where or how old we are. So sort your diet out, go vegan, drink more water, get better sleep, exercise every day, meditate. Stop poisoning your body with excess caffeine and alcohol just because everyone else does. Reduce your stress levels. Address your personal problem areas – we all have them. See a therapist. Make your health your top priority and see how it magically transforms your whole life.
Find a purpose
You might notice that I didn’t say find your purpose. I’m an atheist so I don’t believe in gods or psychics or magic numbers or petitioning with prayer. So I don’t suggest that you sit around, sniffing stinky oils (I don’t care how essential they claim to be) and clutching crystals, waiting for some sort of divine sign telling you what you should do as your life’s calling. Or do that if you like, but in the meantime just find any worthwhile purpose and get stuck in because, in this instance, something is better than nothing. There is no ‘one’ specific thing that you need to do. There are a million different ways for you to be happy. There are a million ways in which you can help make the world a better place. It could be your job or your hobby, it doesn’t matter, just do something that gives you a good reason to get out of bed in the morning. Do something that lights a fire in your belly and motivates you to be a better person. Preferably something that helps other people too – because when you help others, you automatically tend to help yourself too and that really is the best of both worlds.
All you need is love
Do everything with love. Absolutely everything. Be compassionate to every one and every thing, as far as possible (it’s always possible). Whenever you feel yourself getting angry or irritated, take a step back, work out why, give your head a wobble and choose love instead. Consider going vegan (if only because you don’t agree with cruelty to animals). Love yourself. Practice radical self-care often and with wanton abandon. Love your family and friends for all of their flawed beauty. Be kind to strangers – every single person is somebody’s baby. Forgive the people who hurt you, we all make mistakes, we all hurt people sometimes, we mostly don’t mean to, and we all want to be forgiven. Try your hardest to always come from a place of love, kindness and compassion and you can’t go far wrong.
No matter how bad things get, and I know they can get very bad sometimes, there is always, always, always something to be grateful for. So try to look for the sliver linings. They are there, even when they are very thin and very faint. If you can’t quite see the light in your life, if there have been too many dark days, that’s what friends and family are for. If you don’t have friends or family, you can always drop me a line and I’ll do my best to search for that silver lining with you.