People who are truly happy usually exhibit these 10 traits

Ever met someone who’s always smiling and wondered, “What’s their secret?”

Well, it’s not magic or a secret stash of gold. Really happy people tend to have some things in common.

In this article I’m going to explore the top 10 traits that these cheerful folks often have.

It’s simpler than you might think, and it’s not all about money or fancy things.

1) Gratitude

Happy folks have this amazing habit of counting their blessings, not their problems.

It’s not that they have fewer challenges in life; it’s that they choose to focus on what’s going right instead of what’s going wrong.

They’ll often start or end their day by noting something they’re thankful for, big or small.

This simple act of recognizing and appreciating the good things in life can work wonders in boosting one’s mood.

So next time you find yourself feeling down, try jotting down three things you’re grateful for. It might just bring a little sunshine to your day!

2) Positivity

Let me tell you about my friend, Clara. No matter the situation, she’s always looking for the silver lining.

I remember once when we got caught in a sudden rainstorm during a picnic.

Instead of lamenting over the spoiled sandwiches, she laughed and said, “At least the plants are getting some love!”

That’s the spirit of genuinely happy people: turning setbacks into opportunities.

They wear their positivity like a favorite sweater, wrapping themselves in a mindset that looks for the good in every situation.

And you know what?

This habit of finding the bright side doesn’t just make them happier; it’s contagious, spreading cheer to everyone around them.

So, the next time you find yourself in a pickle, think of what Clara would say and search for that silver lining.

3) Embracing imperfection

We live in a world where Instagram filters and curated lives dominate.

But guess what? The happiest people often care less about being perfect.

It sounds backwards, right?

While many are striving for that perfect shot or the ideal life, truly content individuals recognize that life is beautifully imperfect.

They’re the ones laughing over a burnt toast or celebrating a misshapen homemade pie because it tells a story.

Perfection? It’s overrated.

The blemishes, the quirks, the unexpected turns—those make life richer.

So the next time something doesn’t go as planned, instead of feeling down, give yourself a high five for being authentically, imperfectly human.

It’s the unexpected twists that make the story memorable.

4) Deep connections

Happy people often prioritize real, meaningful relationships over superficial ones.

It’s not about the number of followers they have on social media, but the quality of genuine connections in their life.

They are the ones who’ll sit down with you for hours, listening to your stories, sharing their own, and being present in the moment.

They value heart-to-heart conversations and genuine laughter shared with loved ones.

These deep connections act as their anchor, offering support, love, and a sense of belonging.

So, if you’re looking to boost your happiness, maybe it’s time to put down that phone, grab a cup of coffee, and have a real chat with a friend.

The joy found in true companionship is unparalleled.

5) Facing fears

Genuinely happy people aren’t fearless.

They’re scared, just like the rest of us. They fear rejection, failure, and uncertainty.

But here’s what sets them apart: they face those fears head-on.

Instead of running away, they lean into the discomfort, confront the dark corners, and grow from the experience.

They recognize that avoiding what scares us often holds us back from truly living.

By confronting their fears, they learn, evolve, and gain a strength and confidence that’s incomparable.

It’s not about being unafraid; it’s about moving forward despite the fear. Because on the other side of that apprehension?

That’s where life’s most profound moments often hide.

So, let’s be real: if you’re waiting for a sign to face what terrifies you, this is it.

Dive deep, brave soul, and discover what life has in store.

6) Relishing simple moments

I still remember my grandmother, with her worn-out apron and sun-kissed skin, sitting on the porch during summer evenings.

She’d often say, “It’s in the simple moments that life feels grand.”

She found immense joy in watching the fireflies dance, sipping her evening tea, or even just feeling the warmth of an old quilt.

Happy people, much like my grandma, find magic in the ordinary. They don’t need grand gestures or extravagant vacations to feel content.

The aroma of a freshly baked pie, the sound of children’s laughter echoing in the park, or the sensation of a loved one’s hand in theirs – these simple, unassuming moments fill their hearts with joy.

It’s a gentle reminder that sometimes, happiness isn’t about chasing big dreams but cherishing the tiny moments that make life truly beautiful.

7) Setting boundaries

Balancing work, relationships, hobbies, and self-care isn’t a walk in the park.

And one of the silent keys to happiness?

Knowing when to say “no.”

Truly content individuals understand the importance of setting boundaries.

They recognize that spreading themselves too thin not only diminishes their joy but also affects the quality of their commitments. It’s not about being selfish; it’s about self-preservation.

By establishing clear boundaries, they ensure they have the time and energy for what truly matters, leading to a more fulfilled and less stressed life.

Remember, it’s okay to prioritize your well-being and to decline things that don’t align with your values or current commitments. Saying “no” might just be the secret ingredient to a happier you.

8) Seeking discomfort

Wait, discomfort? And happiness? Sounds a bit off, right?

But stick with me here.

The happiest people don’t always take the easy road. In fact, they frequently challenge themselves, step out of their comfort zones, and dive into unfamiliar territories.

Why? Because it’s in these moments of discomfort that the most significant growth occurs.

They know that the cocoon of comfort can be a silent progress-killer.

By pushing their boundaries and trying something new, even if it’s scary or challenging, they learn more about themselves and the world around them.

So the next time you’re faced with a choice between the cozy, familiar path and the uncertain, rocky one, consider taking the latter. Your future, happier self might just thank you for it.

9) Cultivating self-awareness

Knowing oneself is an underrated superpower.

Truly happy individuals invest time in understanding themselves: their strengths, their triggers, their dreams, and even their shortcomings. They reflect on their experiences, emotions, and reactions, not to nitpick or criticize, but to grow and evolve.

By being attuned to their inner world, they can make decisions that align with their values and desires, leading to a more fulfilling life. This introspection also helps them navigate challenges with resilience and grace.

So, take a moment, breathe deep, and listen to your inner voice. Understanding yourself might just be the secret key you’ve been searching for on your journey to happiness.

10) Lifelong learning

One standout trait among the happiest is their insatiable thirst for knowledge. They view life as an endless classroom, with every experience offering a fresh lesson.

For them, it’s not just about formal education or stacking up degrees. It’s the genuine curiosity to delve into unknown topics, the excitement of mastering a new skill, or the openness to understand diverse perspectives.

This continuous journey of discovery not only keeps their minds sharp but also infuses life with a sense of purpose and novelty.

By embracing lifelong learning, they ensure that every day presents an opportunity to grow, evolve, and find joy in new knowledge.

So, if you’ve been considering diving into a new book, taking up a course, or simply exploring a new hobby, there’s no time like the present. The joy of learning is an everlasting source of happiness.

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Lachlan Brown

Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the editor of Ideapod and founder of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you to want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.

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