The Five W’s of Happiness

Happy New Year! And given the day and the start of another year, it is a good to for a reprise of a piece that i

One source of Happiness
One source of Happiness
did several years back on finding the right balance for Happiness.

It is rare to find a time in your life when everything is just perfect. There is usually one facet of your world that is operating better or worse than another.

Take a minute and think about how you are feeling on this particular day. Are you feeling happy or stressful? There are just a handful of facets of your world that are controlling that emotion. The key to experiencing happiness is to have a simple majority of these critical factors in the “plus” column. What are those factors? Here they are in no priority order:

1) Wallet – What is the state of your bank accounts, retirement accounts, and other investments? How is your monthly income, does it more than cover all your expenses? Are you feeling comfortable or are there bills you need to pay, things you would like to buy, but don’t feel that you can?

2) Weather – If the sky is blue and the sun is shining, that can have a dramatic impact on how you view the day. Get stuck in a snowstorm or live through day after day of clouds and rain … and it will start to get you down.

3) Work – How do you like your job and the people you have to work with? If you are retired, what kind of hobbies do you have to give some meaning to your spare time?

4) Wife, Family, and Friends – Is all smooth and solid with your spouse, children, and the rest of your family? Are you able to spend the ever-popular ‘quality time’ with them? Do you have a solid network of friends to socialize, sport, and talk with?

5) Weight – How is your health and your physical conditioning? If you are getting regular exercise and controlling your shape, it can make you feel very good about yourself – and that is where all happiness starts.

If you can get three out of the five to be positive, you will be happy – even with the other two as negatives. When I suggested to a friend that maybe we were different than other people in putting weight and exercise as a factor on the list equally critical with money and family (we were both tennis players and runners at that time); because it was obvious that was not the way everyone felt. My friend responded, it is equally important for them; but they don’t recognize it and they start every day with one negative to overcome.

So, be healthy and be happy!

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