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  • Marcy Kocher

What is Happiness

Last week, we normalized unhappiness.


We now know it’s normal and necessary to experience both positive and negative feelings to keep us safe and help us live more meaningful, connected lives.


This week, let’s talk about happiness.

Happiness is a rather vague and subjective concept, and yet, as humans, we tirelessly pursue it. 


It’s even in our U.S. Constitution! 


But what does it mean?


It actually means something different for all of us. 


Happiness is defined as a positive emotion. 


Happy and positive are often used interchangeably. 


Psychologist Barbara Fredrickson is considered one of the world’s leading experts on the subject, and she’s compiled a list of the ten most common positive emotions, which are:


Joy, gratitude, serenity, interest, hope, pride, amusement, inspiration, awe, and love. 


All these emotions and more can be included under the umbrella of happiness. 


So, when you think of happiness, it can be one of these feelings or a combination.


What are your favorites? 


My top three are love, gratitude, and abundance. 


These three emotions changed my life. 


You see, I used to live mainly in a state of stress, overwhelm, and scarcity. 


In my mind, there was never enough. 


Not enough time, money, or love. 


And because I had that belief, that’s what I created over and over again. 


Then, one day, after a significant life crisis, I decided that I had had enough of not enough.


I was ready to live my life differently, and I knew real change needed to come from the inside out. 


I went to work. 


I hired a life coach, and we spent six months working on all the thoughts that created my feelings of overwhelm and scarcity. 


Because when I thought there wasn’t enough, I did things to create not enough. 


This changed my life. 


I went from not having enough time, money, and love to waking up excited about my days feeling passion and purpose.


Today, I do what I love: coaching amazing, brilliant women who are ready to create the lives they dream of with peace and ease. 


I have more money and love than I’ve ever had before. 


My husband and I often ask each other, how can it possibly get better than this? 


And yet it does.


How did I go from stress, overwhelm, and scarcity to love, gratitude, and abundance? 


It’s a process, but one of the tools I used to create my present life is to practice thinking about what I have.


I rewired my brain to see the abundance in my life. 


Brains are wired to be negative and to focus on what we don’t have. 


It’s called Negativity Bias.  


It’s a survival skill, and it’s completely normal. 


But normal doesn’t always serve us.


When I focused on what I didn’t have, I felt bad, and when I felt bad, I would do things that kept me stuck in a life that wasn’t satisfying.


What we think about, we bring about. 


So, I began to deliberately practice focusing on all the good in my life. 


This was not easy at first. 


I started with clean drinking water. 


Every time I would get a drink of water, I would tell myself how amazing it was to live in a place where I had an abundance of clean water.  


I could have clean water whenever I wanted it! 


Then I would add things like, I have electricity and heat and a warm bed! 


I have access to the internet and health care. 


I have a reliable car. 


I have plenty of food, and I live in a safe neighborhood. 


I have a family and incredible friends. 


I did this every day. 


I rewired my brain by doing this consistently, and it’s now my new normal. 


I see my life differently. 


The things I used to take for granted are now magical and awe-inspiring to me. 


I used to think nothing worked out for me.


 And now, I 100% believe Everything works out for me. 


I really do. 


When I believe that, I feel abundant, and when I feel abundant, I show up powerfully, lovingly, and purposefully, and I create more and more love and abundance.


So, to create more happiness, focus on what you currently have. 


CHOOSE to feel grateful for it all. 


Do it deliberately and do it often. 


Make it a daily discipline and strengthen your happiness muscle. 

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