‘Tis the season to be jolly! And are you jolly, happy, and joyful? Probably so (unless you’re bogged down with too much holiday shopping, food, and family!). And isn’t it easier to be happy during the holidays because we have so many fun distractions. We get time off work, we get to see friends and family we don’t often see, and we have permission to celebrate. In other words, during this merry season it’s easy to practice the art of happiness.

And that’s great, but what about the rest of the year? How well do you practice the art of happiness the rest of the year?

That might sounds like an odd question, but it’s not. But it might be easier to explain why with a simple analogy that comes from dog trainers. Dog trainers tell us that we are always “training” our dogs with our every action, command, attention, or lack of attention. What this means is that you don’t train your dog only during official training sessions, you train your dog every time you interact with him. Training is always occurring whether you mean it to or not. For instance, if you always push your dog away while you are working in your home office your dog eventually learns that you are “unavailable” when you are in your office. Having been “trained” in this way, he may not come tell you he has to go outside when you’re in your office, even if that means that he has an accident somewhere in the house!

The same thing is true of your emotional and mental states. You deliberately “practice” a peaceful state during meditation. That’s easy to see. But what about the rest of the day? What if you spend the rest of your day feeling anxious, worried, angry, frustrated, or upset? Then you are practicing those negative states all day long. So while you may practice peace for 30 minutes a day during your meditation, you may be practicing negative emotions for the majority of the rest of your day.

Most of us want to be happy and prosperous but we won’t achieve that state if we spend most of our time practicing how to be in a negative state. You have to practice being happy before it becomes a natural state for you. Sure, you might practice being happy and peaceful during your morning meditation but how do you practice that during the rest of your day?

Here are three things to get you started:

1. Make being happy the most important goal in your life. Period.
2. Blow off steam magically when you do feel negative to restore happiness. Get directions here.
3. Remember that nothing lasts forever, not even a negative state. Wait out negativity until happiness returns.

Need More Ways to Practice the Art of Happiness?
Check out our 10 Magical Quick Fixes ebook that has all kinds of tools to help you go from sad and blue to happy and in-the-groove. Find the ebook here.