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I recently made a life-changing decision  - I quit my corporate job. This wasn’t a rash decision. It was s-l-o-w simmer like a beautiful tomato sauce cooking for hours. In my case, the notion of quitting simmered in my mind for at least six months before I broke the news to my employer. I now live and work by design - doing what I love and feeling free.  Living and working by design and finding happiness in the small things is what I love the most in this new chapter of my life. 

There are no set rules or ways to happiness but these tips will help you start on a path to a fuller life. Remember it’s a journey so don’t be in a rush.

 1.  Schedule Downtime

I know this is an overused phrase but most people I speak to rarely have enough or any time alone. It’s ok to be a little selfish with your time. Spend quality time alone every day. These breaks can be short (20 minutes) like walking the dog, reading a book or listening to your favorite relaxing music.  Meditation and yoga fall nicely into this category, as their goal is to calm the mind and body.

 2.  Introspection

Once you have the downtime, use some of that time to look inward and discover your path to a joyful life. I know this sounds surreal but it’s about discovering what makes you happy and identifying things that do not. Once you have discovered what they are, you can work towards bringing in more of the good. Without the discovery you cannot achieve fulfillment; it’s a slow process so have patience.

  3.   Connect With Positive People And Create Positive Experiences

Make a list of places you want to visit, interests or thing you want to try then invite a friend who shares those interests to participate.   Sharing your time with like-minded individuals was rated as one of the greatest influences on achieving a meaningful life.  So go out and join those clubs and meet some interesting people who love what you do.

 4.  Re-evaluate Your Task List

Now that you have prioritized what is truly valuable in your life, take the time to reevaluate your busy time.  Eliminate or reduce those tasks that are really not necessary and work towards optimizing your time for the better.

5.  Balance Life

Life is a balancing act between the work and family obligations and the mundane acts that are necessary evils.  I’m a believer that each of us has only a finite total of mental energy.  Focusing on the positive will bring calmness and balance to our lives.