One of the reasons my partner and I have a successful relationship is because I love when he’s happy, and he loves when I’m happy, so we do our best to make each other happy and support each other in things that make us happy, because one’s happiness makes the other happy. I know I have needs and I know he has needs and the ability to recognize and accept those needs is part of what helps us work together so well. It sounds really simple and it is and it’s worked for us for many years, but like other things it does take work. It’s the secret to success for many relationships even if they don’t realize it.
So how can you find happiness this holiday season? Simple: make someone else happy.
If you’ve ever watched a child tear into a gift you got them you can probably remember their excitement over the gift, especially if it was something they really wanted or something that is all the rage and they can’t believe they got. Their happiness and joy over the gift you got them made you happy that you took the time and made the effort to get it for them.
But you don’t even have to spend lots on gifts this holiday season to make people happy. One of the simplest and best things you can do is let them know that you appreciate what they contribute to the world. We’re surrounded by people who constantly tear down others and look for ways to exploit faults and succeed while others fail. Telling someone that you appreciate their attention to detail, the way they have with words, their ability to calm children, or whatever is special about them means the world to most people. Who doesn’t like to have their best qualities not only noticed but appreciated? When you’re celebrating their abilities you’re not just making them happy through whatever influence you have, you’re recognizing their power and ability to be happy and make a contribution to the world.
So who will you make happy this holiday season? Will it be the underpaid and overworked secretary? Your husband/boyfriend/partner/wife/lover that you have neglected recently? Your kids that you don’t give enough quality attention to? Or will it be someone you randomly meet? Let’s share happiness.
“Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though it were his own.” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe