- Wednesday, 20 May 2015

How To Be Happy

If you've arrived at this post looking for a step-by-step tutorial on 'how to be happy', then I'm afraid I'm about to disappoint you. However, before you click away to continue your quest for happiness, I want to share one piece of advice I have heard a few times now, and every time it strikes a chord and really inspires me. It's very simple.

Do what you love.

Oh but it's so vague and unhelpful, how could I possibly think this is going to help anyone be happy? I do apologise. If you'll let me expand, though, you might feel as inspired as I have done many a time. You see, doing what you love is far too often a luxury rather than a way of life or even a daily occurrence. People get jobs so that they can earn enough that once in a while they can afford themselves some time off to do what they love. Now if this is what you, reader, are doing with your life, then I'm sorry but you've been doing it all wrong. (Bear with me and also please don't hold a grudge; I don't do well with people being offended or annoyed by me.)

You have probably heard the phrase "Find what you love and let it kill you." (frequently attributed to Charles Bukowski but as yet it remains unproven whether the words are actually his or not; either way, that's off topic.) This phrase is basically the opposite of what I'm about to tell you to do. Instead of letting what you love kill you, let it support you. Find what you love, and let it support you.

Which, to fit with general practicalities and life requirements, can be translated to: find what you love and find how to monetise it.

Oh but how can I possibly monetise [blah]? Well, you'd be surprised. Lately, there have been more and more emerging industries and jobs which have resulted purely from people turning what they love into a viable occupation. Take YouTubers, for example - some people might still argue that's not a 'proper job', but when you look at the bare facts, they are doing what they love and easily, easily, supporting themselves with it. Just a number of years ago nobody would have ever dared to dream that you could make a more than substantial living by putting a 10-minute video on a website once a week. And yet you can.

My mum designs websites; when she was at the age where people are pushed to declare what they are going to do with their lives, websites hadn't even been invented. With the ever-progressing technologies and all sorts that we can see today and can expect in the future, who knows what possibilities tomorrow will hold for all of us?

Don't wait for the 'perfect' job to crop up - if it does, this simply means that somebody else has already created it. Dig out that perfect job for yourself. Other people have done it; so can you.

There is an endless list of things I love doing, and I'm still trying to work out a way to a) combine them all and b) turn them into something I can do every day to earn a living from.

Since I can remember, I have been writing anything and everything - speeches, debates, poems, songs, stories, stories and stories. I have been taking and editing photos, writing and planning scripts and storyboards and filming this, that and the next thing and editing them together into things I can say I'm proud of. I have been designing houses and interiors and creating and modifying floorplans, designing clothes and logos and embarking upon creative DIY project one after another after another after another. I've been planning my travels around the world - when I was about eight I googled and extensively planned and researched (and then asked Mum for help too) "how to run away and join the circus"; my wanderlust and desire to roam has been fairly longstanding. I've been teaching myself languages, been teaching myself about the science behind things that interest me, been reading up on food, nutrition and wellbeing and all that goes along with it, and a lot more besides.

I want to find a way to combine these things that I love and make it my life. And where there's a will, there's a way.

If you're still feeling less than inspired or motivated, watch this (incidentally, this always reinforces my wish to be a motivational speaker - want to incorporate that somehow too..) : Alan Watts - What If Money Was No Object?

P.S. You'd be surprised how much difference it makes on a day-to-day basis to wake up and just decide that today, you're going to be happy. It works.





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