How to be happier than most people.
I have a theory. The person who posesses these three qualities has a more enjoyable life than most people. The three qualities are:
- High Self Esteem
- High Self Effacacy
- Internal Loci of Control
I’m going to describe each of these personality traits and then suggest a methology of how to improve them in yourself. In short, you will read a proposal of how to be happier than most people. Let’s begin.
High Self Esteem
Let’s remember the word “esteem” means “respect”. Thus self-esteem describes how much we respect ourselves. It follows that someone who respects themself is likely to have strongs boundries that prevent others from abusing them for any length of time. Self-esteem would also help us moderate how we abuse ourselves in the form of shaming self-talk or self-blame by living within personal boundries for our own behavior.
High Self Effacacy
According to Albert Bandura, self-efficacy is “the belief in one’s capabilities to organize and execute the courses of action required to manage prospective situations.” Self-efficacy is a person’s belief in his or her ability to succeed in a particular situation. Having a “Can Do” attitude is a good of way thinking about High Self Effacacy. When introduced to a new challenge people with high self effacacy are more likely to face it than to shrink away from it.
Self Esteme and Self Effacacy don’t necessily corelate to one another. A perfectionist can have low self-esteme and high self-effacacy.
Internal Locus of Control
Our Locus of Control is reflected in our beliefs about external events. Somone with an External Locus of Control will tend to blame some events on things outside of their control. If they failed at a test they would blame the teacher, the confusion of the testing process or other factors. If they had a strong Internal Locus of Control the same person would say it would be because they didn’t study enough. Or didn’t get the rest they knew they needed. An Internal Locus of Control means you see much of the world within your control.
How To Be Happier Than Most – Mindfulness!
What kind of mindfulness work can one do to influence themselves to have High Self Esteem, High Self Effacacy and an Internal Loci of Control? The first step one must be able to evaluate where they are with each of these three qualities. Self Talk can reveal our Self Esteem and we can thus use the same self-talk, aka affirmations, to counter the bad things we say about ourselves.
Self Effacacy can be improved by setting out to learn and apply new skills. The more one intentionally aquires new skills the greater the feeling of Self Effacacy. In doing so they develop processes to deal with frustration, something that’s inevitable when learning something new.
An Internal Locus of Control would require a mindfulness of our beliefs and an intentional shift to accept responcibility for things we experience. If one fails at a test it may be easy to say “the teacher was out to get me” or “the questions were too abstract” and show an external locus of control. One must evaluate those beliefs and intentionally believe failure was because they did not study enough for the test or in some way it was their preparation that caused them to fail.
Make this mindfulness a habit.
- Regularly assess your thoughts and reactions to see if can better improve your self-esteem.
- Set goals and learning objectives that you know will stretch you and High Self Effacacy will be a by product of that.
- Good and Bad Fortune are going to happen. Find a way to see them as a result of your actions and choices.