What makes you happy?

What Makes You Happy?

What makes you happy?

Positive psychology suggests it’s more than just fleeting moments of joy. It’s about finding meaning, cultivating positive relationships, and embracing gratitude.

In this short video, the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) captured the responses from the top tennis players around the world. Most of them are players that I’ve grown to known by watching the Netflix documentary series “Break Point” which gives an intimate behind-the-scenes look at the players. It is an intense series because it demonstrates the extreme highs and lows that these players experience. It sometimes crushes me to know that most of these tennis players often place their self-worth based on the number of tournaments that they win.

Fortunately for most of us, we are not in such an extreme, competitive and high-stakes environment. However, we might be placing too much of our happiness on external validations and milestones.

Nevertheless, it was interesting to hear the responses from the players which included –

  • Girlfriend
  • Winning
  • Being with close people
  • Tennis
  • People around me being healthy and balance with myself
  • Having time to play the computer games
  • My dad’s cooking
  • My daughter and my family

The answers above were interesting because it provided a slight preview into their mindsets on what makes them happy.

For example, if one of them really believed that they can only be happy if they won a tournament, it means that they are constantly postponing their happiness and will only wait to be happy when a big milestone happens.

We can also reflect on this and ask ourselves if we fall into the same trap: “Will I only be happy if I get a promotion? A new business deal? Achieve a goal? Have many followers?” But as we all know, such milestones do not happen frequently and we might be holding ourselves back from experiencing joy on a daily basis.

On that note, I loved this reply from one of the players on what makes him happy:-

“Everything. Daily, I have a lot of happy moments throughout the day. It starts when I wake up.”

With this mindset, he is not leaving his happiness in the hands of others or to an external milestone. He is already choosing to be happy with the simple joys in life. This is not a mindset that many people would naturally adopt because humans are wired to have a negative bias due to our survival instincts. However, it does not mean it is impossible! We can remind ourselves that happiness lies not only in the big things but also in the little things as well.

So how can we rewire our mindset? We can easily do this by ending our day with a simple question, “What can I be grateful for today?” This simple question helps to rewire our negative mindset to search for the positives that happened during the day, regardless how small it can be. In fact, I would recommend that you ask your family members because it can be a wonderful practice to end the day together on a grateful note.

But back to the video. It didn’t surprise me that Djokovic, currently the World No.1 player came up with the most interesting answer when he replied to the interviewer:

You make me happy! You brought a lot of good energy.

This provides another great example that happiness can be multiplied when we make others happy and see the good in them!

So now take a moment to reflect on the question, “What makes you happy?”

I am hoping that the answer is not something that you have to wait for too long.

You can always be happy now.

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