For many people, consistently staying upbeat or remaining optimistic is not always easy as they navigate the constant ups and downs of life. However, some continue to be cheerful and content even amidst apparent hardships.

How can you achieve a sustained state of happiness and satisfaction, no matter what life throws at you? Those who are truly satisfied with their lives may have something to teach us all.

9 Secrets Only the Happiest Among Us Know

Happiness and contentment are states of mind. But how can you achieve them in a consistent manner? Here are nine practices those who live life to the fullest have embraced.

1. They appreciate the little things in life.

Truly satisfied people understand that, often, it is not the big things—from money to luxury vacations—that deliver lasting happiness and fulfillment. This is why they focus on the smaller joys in life instead of mindlessly chasing temporary sources of happiness that eventually leave you craving more or feeling miserable.

2. People who are happy have better awareness.

They spend time on reflection and have developed a deeper understanding and awareness of themselves and their surroundings. These individuals don’t feel the need to impress others or seek approval from those around them. And instead of going into denial when challenges crop up, they try to find solutions that could create a win for everyone involved.

3. They take responsibility for their own lives.

Happy and content people never assign blame to others or wait around for someone else to make their lives better. They understand their strengths and weaknesses, know what they can and cannot control, and don’t hesitate to make bold decisions.

Being self-reliant, these individuals believe in themselves and their ability to create positive change. They are also mindful of when to let things go and avoid emotionally draining circumstances.

4. They live in the present moment.

Many people rush through life without taking the time to truly experience it. Those who enjoy greater fulfillment are not afraid to slow down so they can be more present. This allows them to savor the smaller joys and experience a more intense level of happiness.

5. They look after their mental and physical health.

People who have achieved lasting contentment make a conscious effort to protect their mental and physical well-being. Taking care of their body with the right nutrition, adequate sleep, and exercise is important to them. They also spend plenty of time outdoors and leverage meditation, prayer, and spiritual practices.

6. Happy people surround themselves with positivity.

They know that happiness will not find them and, instead, they must find it by actively pursuing it. In other words, being happy requires effort.

Therefore, they take deliberate action to achieve joy and contentment. They surround themselves with positive people and stay clear of individuals and events that sap their energy. Being optimistic, seeing good in others, and engaging in activities that bring joy are essential to them.

7. They practice minimalism.

Those who enjoy a sense of continued fulfillment don’t count on material possessions to bring them happiness. They know that the more assets they acquire, the more cluttered and complex their lives become. So, they rely on minimalistic living to achieve true contentment.

8. They place great importance on human connections.

Meaningful relationships are critical for lasting and authentic happiness. This is something anyone who has found meaning and joy in life will confirm. These types of individuals constantly prioritize human connections and nurture close relationships with those they can lean on and seek comfort when they need it the most.

9. Those who are truly satisfied with life practice generosity.

They know that giving back can produce an intense sense of joy and self-worth. For them, being kind and generous doesn’t need to involve financial gifting—it can be as simple as volunteering at a soup kitchen, helping an elderly neighbor with their groceries, or complimenting a random stranger.

Your Path to Achieving Lifelong Happiness and Fulfillment

Here are simple yet profound changes you can make today to lead an authentically satisfied life.

  • Actively seek happiness and contentment

Achieving fulfillment and joy takes hard work. Consider what could truly deliver sustained happiness for you and take deliberate and incremental action. For instance, spend time with your family, start a hobby you have always wanted to pursue, take time out to unwind, read a good book, and celebrate every small achievement.

  • Be grateful

You have much to be grateful for in your life—you may have a loving family, great friends, or amazing health. You can even be thankful for the simplest joy of being able to walk outside and breathe in fresh air. Journaling and writing notes of appreciation are excellent practices to develop gratitude.

  • Be kind to yourself

Learning to love yourself is essential for achieving lasting happiness. Be more forgiving and embrace your flaws. Avoid placing excessive pressure to chase lofty goals. Sometimes, you simply need to slow down and give yourself a break.

  • Prioritize your mental and physical well-being

Pay extra attention to protecting your mind and body—if you don’t, no one else will. Ensure you get enough sleep each night, eat healthy, and exercise regularly.

  • Practice mindfulness

Meditation and yoga are particularly helpful for slowing the mind chatter and learning to be present.

  • Nurture meaningful relationships

Never take your loved ones for granted. Allocate sufficient time to strengthen important relationships and build new ones that nourish your mind and bring joy and fulfillment.

  • Find a mentor or life coach

Sometimes, what may seem like simple steps could represent dramatic life changes. In those instances, a mentor’s support and guidance can go a long way. If you feel you could benefit from an expert’s counseling, search Leadar to find a life coach in your local area. Discuss what you would like to achieve—whether it is taking better control of your life decisions, building self-awareness, or understanding your priorities—and let them guide you in creating a structured program tailored to your needs.

Wrapping Up

In today’s materialistic world, many people link the pursuit of happiness to attaining money, luxuries, and other possessions. But those who have achieved a lasting sense of fulfillment beg to differ. They can provide a fresh perspective on life that promises more meaningful and permanent satisfaction. If you are seeking sustained joy and contentment, it is time to take note and start making deliberate changes.