We all have this innate baseline of happiness inside of us. We have the ability to create and control our own lives, our own visions, and our own emotional states. Our emotions are what rule our thoughts and actions, and the majority of people allow these states to run their lives. What most do not realize, is that we have absolute control of our emotions. Humans create our own sense of awareness and through this comes all of our self worth, whether it comes from excitement, depression, or true, real happiness.
The idea of happiness has many meanings, but here I am addressing real happiness. Not something that is artificial and only temporary. True happiness comes from the foundation of our emotional states. No matter if you just won the lottery or flunked an exam, true happiness is unchanging and you will always snap back to it after any event in your life. The interesting thing about happiness is that we all can change its foundation, otherwise known as its baseline. The experiences we have, the events we participate in, and the encounters we have are what determine our perceived reality, and through this reality our emotions are formed.
So the question arises how do you actually find happiness? How can we actually alter this innate baseline of emotions inside of us to create a reality that is really synonymous with the lives that we want?
The answer is simple. But for most, it is not an easy solution. Everything we do starts with a choice. It is up to you whether or not you are able to make this choice and live your life in a chosen paradigm that suits your specific needs.
My Own Experience With Changing My Emotional Baseline
For the first 20 or so years of my life I was living a very reactive lifestyle. I let the outside world influence me and it would have a drastic effect on my emotions. If I was cut off by a motorist I would get upset and if something did not go my way then I would become extremely frustrated. I was allowing others to enter my present emotions and alter them through a reactive lifestyle. And one day, something inside of my mind clicked. I realized that I was allowing others and external factors to dictate how I lived my life. I was literally being controlled by the actions of others and I had lacked the ability to create a state of happiness for myself.
This epiphany led me to realize that everything in life is a choice. We are human, and through our self awareness we have the power of personal choice during every step of our lives. We choose what we eat, we choose where we spend our time, we choose whether or not to go to college or get a job or travel the world. Every action, no matter how limited we feel in the eventual outcome, truly comes with our ability to make an informed decision.
With this new knowledge I began to look at my own life and how I chose to live it. I saw that others were affecting me in ways that were not desirable and I came to the realization that I was not fully in control of my own life. Once I realized that the source of my unhappiness, that the source of all of my stressors and frustrations came from myself, I was able to make a change. I now could choose not to get upset. I could choose to be happy and not allow others to have influence over my emotional sates. This is what raising your baseline of happiness is. It is not all of a sudden being happier, it is choosing to be happy and being in control of your emotional state.
You Can Do The Same Thing
So what do you need to do in order to live your own life of happiness? Well there are two things to work on. First is your power of choice. You choose to be happy and you choose to be upset. When you can truly realize that you have total control over your emotional states, you no longer live a reactive lifestyle. Everything that happens in life is literally on you and no one else. No matter what the situation is, you can truly decide the outcomes of any event and react to any situation how you choose to.
This concept is extremely difficult for some people to grasp, so here is an exercise that might help you. The next time you are unhappy, upset, or angry, examine the source of that emotion. Where did it come from? Perhaps your boss made you work overtime. Or maybe you were blown off on a first date. No matter the situation look for the source of the emotional pain.
In the above example of being blown off on a first date, it would appear that the inconsiderate guy or girl who failed to show up is to blame. Well sure, they made a commitment and failed to stick to their word. It would make perfect sense to have a feeling of anger or frustration. But with your ability of choice, you get to choose if that makes you upset. You can choose if you want be upset for the next day and complain to all of your friends, or, you can choose to be happy with the current situation and go make something positive out of it. Maybe you can now go explore somewhere new or go meet an old acquaintance for lunch.
The second action you can take is to embrace the opposite of being reactive: being proactive. By being proactive you now are taking the steps to take direct control of the outcome of your life. Since you can choose to be happy, you can also choose to be proactive with your happiness. By constantly aligning your emotional states with where you want them to be you can maximize the effect it will have on your baseline of emotions.
The idea of being proactive extends far beyond emotions. By living a proactive life you can really set the blueprint for where you want to be in 1 month, 6 months or even 5 years from now. Your emotions, actions and outcomes can all be changed by your proactive choices.
Practice Practice Practice
Now it is up to you. Embrace these actions and I promise you will find very surprising results. The amount that your current paradigm affects your life is much greater than most realize and by simply becoming aware of your power of choice you can alter that paradigm to one of happiness and positivity.