10 Qualities of Successfully Happy People (+ Tips to develop them)

There are so many different definitions of success, at least as many humans there are on this planet. However, the one that is well-spread the most certainly involves earning money in order to survive. And yet what does it mean to survive? What is the point of living a life you have to survive in? It is quite normal for a person to be unhappy, stressed, anxious & even a little depressed when having to survive! I know that this aching definition and fixity actually comes from our society’s evolution and is now embedded into what seems to be a very tricky web.

Let’s start off all together, by picturing life as a vehicle for blooming and thriving, and with “success” being synonymous of joy, abundance and happiness.

Before reading those lines, I really want you to understand that I am not claiming to have the keys for fabulous success and genuine happiness. After the deep introspection I made for myself as well as analysing people around me, I just want to share with you all the things that seems essential to cultivate to be fulfilled and that I feel like being crucial for others as well…

Therefore, successfully happy people…

See the glass half full and certainly not half empty.

The first key to one’s success and probably the easiest one to obtain is seeing things that one has instead of focusing her attention on what one does not have. That seems a bit odd to say but it truly is magical. Acknowledging that what one’s doing is great, that one has given her best, that there’s nothing to master/do/find/achieve but our personal definition of happiness.

If you ever feel that you’re focusing on the lack, take a step back and rethink the situation. Set your mind on what you have at that point. Your goal is not as important as the process of it – cause there’s no such thing as a mistake but only ways to learn more about ourselves. Focusing on the process and all the life lessons one may gather on the way is at the core of your success. At the end of the day, it will make the difference in your rush to success.

Are always positive, no matter what they’re enduring.

The more you practice the more you’ll realise it to be almost impossible to focus on our day-to-day lives, problems, stressful situations as well as trying to keep our mind steady and focused on the poses. And this is what we want. Staying in a long, hard and very demanding position or on the contrary flowing through the postures, trying to follow instructions, breathe and focus – all at the same time – will help you in facing a whole range of difficult situations.

What I’ve learnt from my illness and what I am successfully applying in a day-to-day basis is to see bad things from the bright side. There’s nothing like taking the best out of sadness or not being crushed after being disappointed. It is hard to consider a seemingly negative situation with a positive mindset – but you’ll learn and function automatically through repetition. It is very hard to stay positive in a world that is full of dreadful events, unhappy and anxious people, and frightening projection of our future world; but I promise you that by taking a step back, lightening up from the inside and brightening the earth with your small but radiant inner light, you will make a difference. Smile is contagious, and so is happiness.

Are open-minded, eager to learn & motivated.

Successful people are open to new ideas; they listen, take inspiration from others and cultivate what we could call their “smartness”. These people really listen to others’ points of view and thoughts, even though they seem not to be sharing them in the first place; they know, deep down, that there’s always something to learn from everybody, no matter their political belief, nationality, age, size or gender. They feel joy achieving something but do not do it because they are afraid of the negative consequences of their inaction. In a nutshell, they are moving towards what they really want instead of running away from what they don’t!

I am not sure how what kind of tip I could give you to develop that…if you’re still unsure about this point, the one that comes to my mind is: “Shake yourself up and move, life is short my friend, and be sure that no matter what, the universe has your back!

Are self-confident & aware of their inner beauty.

This is not to be mixed up with being vain or egocentric, not at all. This is rather about being self-aware, knowing one’s passions, flaws, qualities… Having faith in one’s own capabilities and powers. Once you get there, you’ll see that achieving great things and goals that you’re proud is going to be so much easier and rewarding. And if there’s anyone standing in your way or criticising you, it is not going to matter for you to reach that goal. And remember this: it’s good to be a dreamer, but you got to become a doer!

What really helps from a physical and then mental point of view: Before doing anything that might create anxiety within your mind (an exam, a test, teaching, a date, etc.) Standing tall, with your feet hip-distance apart, arms wide open and chest up and bumped, for about two minutes. Long deep breaths through the nose and the abdomen. Stand in your power and embrace yourself fully. You’ll feel strong, resourceful and confident, ready to kick some asses! Meditation and positive affirmations (repeating the same sentence every day, long enough for your brain to internalise it).

Take good care of what they eat.

This might actually be one of the easiest as well, it is just the first step that’s hard. Integrating a little health in one’s life is such an easy thing, especially nowadays. Start by cutting off junk food and processed sugars but even more importantly, EAT MORE PLANTS! Vegetables, whole grains, pulses, fruits, natural sugars, nuts…the list is endless and full of so much goodness and colours, it would be hard to resist. And you’ll see the changes directly: no digestion caused fatigue, no guilt after some excesses, a whole lot of energy and so much more. I am not saying that my way of eating will make everyone better off, but successful and happy people do not choose their food by default, but rather because they feel good with it and so does their organisms!

Only look back to see how far they went.

What really is important when willing to create that space for happiness and success to happen in one’s life is not to focus on the past. Once able to let things go and not to have any regret whatsoever, working on the present to influence the future is just going to be a piece of cake. Successful people focus on their creation and not on the things that lead to it.

Try to set your mind on your goal, whether this is a skill you want to develop, or a special project you’ve fancied for a long time, focus all your time, energy and thoughts on it and feel what it’s like to get closer from achieving something that is important to you. And remember to embrace the process on your way up there!

Focus on building strong and everlasting relationships.

Successful people know that by binding to others, they will get stronger and reach another level of happiness. There is a certain harmony in the human development that may only be achieved by creating relationships to others; that makes people not only more powerful, but more confident, open, reliable and sparkling, which will lead others to feel comfortable in their presence. And comfort actually is the key to someone’s trust, which could definitely lead to being successful and happy!

Dare to go out, to events, classes, workshops that you’re interested in. Open yourself to others, dare to talk and ask questions, cause the people in front of you might be in the exact same situation where they want to interact but don’t know where to start! There’s no risk in trying to communicate and create bonds with other people.

Challenge their preconceived notions.

I would add to this that they believe in the power of change. People usually stay in the same posture or keep their job/current situation as it is because they are afraid or do not know what else to do. It is those very same people that usually are unhappy in their job. And indeed someone’s work might not be her passion; therefore, she will create space for creativity and imagination, take time to nourish herself from many other things, fight against our society’s stereotypes and ultimately, if brave, after figuring out what she wanted, start creating it.

Change and instability are frightening yes. But you know you are transforming when things start to get uncomfortable. Step out of this comfort zone we are taught to create for ourselves – you don’t want to live a life of danger but nor of idleness. We, as human beings, have a definite number of breaths we can take in the life – make the most out of them.

Focus their attention on the physical and mental health.

For successful and happy people, health actually is their wealth. As our body is the vehicle for life, the envelope that enables us to enjoy the most beautiful gift of all (that sounds weird, yogic and philosophical but at the end of the day, isn’t true?), it needs to be worshiped and taken good care of. Moreover, no physical or mental limitations are not preventing successfully happy people from evolving; instead, they are taking action to change them and to go beyond, without defining themselves by these. They understand the need to slow down and listen to those vibrations within, this intuition.

It is essential to take care of oneself, one way or another, by incorporating a few healthy rituals for example (taking the stairs instead of the elevator, drinking more water, working out or doing an activity that pleases you everyday or at least three times a week, connecting with yourself or others, etc.)

Believe that abundance is measured from
what one gives and not from what one collects.

Successfully happy people usually love sharing their gifts and talents; they do not want to keep anything for themselves but rather have everyone else happy as well. Whether this is by volunteering, supporting someone you know or a complete stranger, loving people or helping them, sharing truly is the key to inner peace, richness and happiness. Being gentle to others and to ourselves also is a way to evolve and be a better person. Therefore, by cultivating gratitude and sharing our wealth, we will not only feel brighter but also shift our mindset, feeling empowered and clear in our intention.

I strongly believe the first step before sharing is to be grateful for the gifts of life, for all those powers we have but usually take for granted. And then, once we’ve realised how lucky we are, it will also be easier to feel compassion and share our abundance with others.

8 Best Reasons Everyone Should Start Yoga & Step on the Mat

It’s been five years since I’ve stepped into the yoga world, blooming from my mat and shading light on my life and this path I am creating for myself. Going back through my teacher training notes, I found the eight reasons I love yoga. And I had to share them with you cause they came from the mouth and spirit of a to be teacher, who was just beginning his adventure on the mat. Without further ado, here are the eight reasons I am in love with yoga…

1. Yoga will help improve your diet, sleep and overall health

Once your yoga practice starts to become quite regular, you’ll quickly notice that your lifestyle is going to follow. Focusing on the breath, yin postures as well as yang postures will realign your organism on its natural pattern; you’ll be surprised to become quite regular in your meals, in the hours you start to sleep and so on.

Combining bodywork as well as a mind work is a great vehicle for drastic but healthy lifestyle changes. But remember, this is what I experienced and it might not be the same for sure – so relax and just go with the flow. Follow your intuition. Being healthy does not mean avoiding a good glass of wine, a piece of cheese or anything you actually like, it’s more about harmony and balance. Plus, there are as many yoga as there are people on this planet!

2. Yoga relives stress and enable to breath better

The more you practice the more you’ll realise it to be almost impossible to focus on our day-to-day lives, problems, stressful situations as well as trying to keep our mind steady and focused on the poses. And this is what we want. Staying in a long, hard and very demanding position or on the contrary flowing through the postures, trying to follow instructions, breathe and focus – all at the same time – will help you in facing a whole range of difficult situations.

Even though life will challenge you way more than standing on the mat does, staying grounded and focused in uncomfortable positions will train yourself to be at your best when you need it the most. And you’ll learn how to properly breathe. A deep and aware breath will not only relieve unnecessary tension and stress through its effect on the nervous system, but it will also have an effect on the digestive, cardiovascular and immune system. Activating your breathing muscles and being aware of their actions will enable you to improve your body posture, cleanse and detoxify the cells by oxygenating the body, quiet your mind and making it more alert as well as improve memory and creativity. And this is just the point of the iceberg…

3. Yoga helps developing a deeper awareness
of our body, mind, qualities and flaws

The more you practice the more you’ll realise it to be almost impossible to focus on our day-to-day lives, problems, stressful situations as well as trying to keep our mind steady and focused on the poses. And this is what we want. Staying in a long, hard and very demanding position or on the contrary flowing through the postures, trying to follow instructions, breathe and focus – all at the same time – will help you in facing a whole range of difficult situations.

With time, hard work and dedication, you will start noticing body changes. And your knowledge about it as well. You might start to feel tension in a certain joint or compression somewhere in the body, which indicates that you should try to work on this exact spot a little more. You might succeed in making a posture you were never dreaming of achieving, which would most certainly boost your satisfaction. In any case, what you will end up with is a better awareness of what your capabilities are, and how you body moves and evolves into the environment. These skills you develop might be applied in a day-to-day basis, whether physically or mentally speaking. And that is for me the best practical benefit of yoga. Just remember that your body is different today from how it was yesterday and how it will be tomorrow – work towards acceptance and self-love, that would be my best advice. And this is only the point of the iceberg.

4. Yoga helps keeping our body in shape, flexible and strong

Yoga includes poses and sequences that are very powerful and aimed at strengthening and opening one’s body efficiently and most importantly, safely! The only thing that is required to become more flexible and stronger is patience (and a regular practice of course). Flow classes are my favourite classes for this reason (and the ones I actually like teaching the most): they combine everything from breathing, focus, movement, and elegance to deep muscular work.

What’s great in yoga practice is that it requires us to use every single muscle of our body. Yoga is an answer to our society’s illness, which is the body’s deterioration because of deskwork and idleness. Your entire body will get a proper wake-up call, and by combining strength, flexibility and a good sweat, you will be more mobile, stronger in the greatest shape ever.

5. Yoga is the best practice for the mind
as well as for focusing on the inner self

The main reason I reinforced my practice and tried to deepen my knowledge on yoga is that it is one of the variables that helped me getting through anorexia (read my story here). Having a regular practice, with its own regularity and requirements in it, as well as keeping my mind focused on my postures, alignment and breath really did the trick for me to avoid thinking about thinness, beauty, food, calories and so on.

And there is nothing better than meeting incredible people and having teachers that believe in you, motivate you and unconsciously help you, to feel valued and beautiful. Moreover, yoga is focused on the individual and her well being, an activity where you dig further into one’s mind to discover all the beauty and capabilities within. There’s also a whole philosophy of life behind it, which may help people getting over various life issues and answering big questions that were wandering into one’s mind. And this is not something you’ve got to embrace entirely, but choose to hear and sometimes apply, as I did with a few things only. As my favourite yoga teacher says, “Yoga is a great vehicle for inner change”. And this is where the magic is.

6. Yoga will make you meet incredible people
& is the fountain of youth

Yoga is not a mere sport; it’s much more than that. Once one has started practising a little more, one will notice that yoga is a way of life, of thinking, of seeing others and the environment. By gathering into a room and sharing a practice as well as small-talks and cups of tea even, people certainly do make friends with others that share their point of views, opinions or lifestyle’s choices. The energy that is created in a class brings people together and make them feel like they need to share, socialize, laugh and talk. Whether it is your yoga teacher, who could become an inspiration, or people you just met but feel like knowing for years, yoga will most certainly open your heart and make you realise the beauty in others…and I am speaking from experience here.

7. Yoga heals any kind of pain and injury

You would be surprised to hear how many people come into a class, as a beginner, with injuries and pain, particularly in the knees, back or joints. And these people most certainly started yoga because they were told that it would cure them. And it does.

It’s not only about alignment, breathing or movement; yoga is about identifying discomfort and pain, understanding our bodies and its range of movement. A good practice does not require for someone to push beyond the boundaries, just to trigger the edges and see where that may lead. Furthermore, there’s always a variation or modification for those who cannot do a pose or are afraid to start with the full posture, and this without preventing progress.

However, yoga works just like medicine – it is great when taken with good care and awareness of one’s body, but become a poison when taken badly. Last but not least, many poses are thought to be worsening someone’s injury, though they actually are the best thing to do in such a case – the “Reclining Hero” and its amazing effects on our knees’ health is the best example of this!

8. Yoga promotes gender equality and is a non-competitive
and non-performance orientated practice

Even though women are still the majority on the mat nowadays, men are starting to make their way into this lifestyle, and appreciate it a whole lot as I notice. The more I teach the more I see men joining my classes – this makes me extra-happy cause I want yoga to be accessible and appreciated by everyone. Men and women benefit equally from a yoga practice. What’s even better is that there is no competition or rivalry whatsoever, because yoga is focused on the self, on someone’s own practice, challenges and mind. The beauty of it is that all these differences and various practices melt together into a powerful energy that renders every single class even more beautiful than the previous one. It makes people more compassionate, more accepting, nicer and happier; and I believe these are things that are going to be needed in our future society.