7 main reasons for our unhappiness

We are born naked, wet, and hungry. Then things get worse.
(A joke)

We've all been there.
Or may be it's where you are right now. Feeling unhappy, sad, a bit frustrated, miserable, depressed... It's seems that the more you think about it, the more it's drawing you in.

If you want to do something about it, become happier, more hopeful, then you need to understand why we become unhappy in the first place.

Read the following 'reasons for unhappiness' and learn what to do about it here.

by Elia Strange

upset children

Reasons for our unhappiness:

1. Do you know what is the core desire of every human? To be in control of our lives. To be free to do whatever we want to do and whenever we want to do it. When something is not in our control, we feel sad, frustrated, depressed, and unhappy. The more things you have that you are NOT in control of, the more unhappy you might feel!

2. Another underlying reason for being happy/unhappy is that everyone likes to be: a) liked, b) loved, and c) approved by others. If you are not liked or approved, directly or indirectly, you might feel hurt, angry, and unhappy.

For example, if you are not treated ‘as you should’ or if you feel that you are being criticised - by a sales assistant, your dad, your boss, your friend, and so on, you will feel unappreciated and unloved.

3. If you don’t have anything to look forward to, for example, a shopping trip with your friend, a weekend 'somewhere nice', a holiday, a friend's birthday party, and so on, you might also feel unhappy. Particularly, if your job is “not very aspiring” (or put it simply - it sucks). Without anything to look forward to, your life at times might feel like a torture or an absolute boredom.

4. Most people like to complain. Or so it seems. There would be nothing wrong with that if complaining was an occasional thing. Most of us focus way too much on ‘what’s going wrong’ rather than ‘what’s going right’.

The more things you find that irritate and annoy you, the more annoying things will appear in your daily life. In some books (e.g. New Age and Spirituality type books) it’s called ‘The Law of Attraction’. In Psychology books it’s called ‘Individual Perception’, ‘Selective Perception’, or ‘Selective Attention’.

The point is the same: When most things seem bad, you feel unhappy.

5. Some people are simply ‘stuck’ in their past. Most people have experienced negative situations in the past: troubles in their childhood, awful relationships, and so on. If you cannot ‘let them go’, i.e. feeling 'ok' when you think about them, then professional help might be needed.

A few sessions with a professional counsellor could make a big difference to your thinking about ‘the past’. If you can’t let it go, it will ‘eat you from inside’, and time to time it will show its ugly head to make you depressed and unhappy.

The same can be said about “worries about the future”.

You can never know what the future brings. You can never fully insure and protect yourself from all the negative situations of the future. Instead of focusing on ‘what might happen’, you can focus on your positive dreams and aspirations, and hope that everything will sort itself out (because usually it does!) and that everything will be just fine.

6. Some people might feel that they are always ‘in the wrong place at the wrong time’. When I personally feel like this, I follow one general rule: ‘Find three positive things in any negative situation’. Often, after doing this exercise (i.e. finding 3 positive things), or when some time passes (i.e. several days, weeks, or even months), you might realise that actually you were in the right place at the right time!

7. The last (but not least) reason on this list is our ‘personal expectations’. We expect others to treat us in a particular way, we expect to be paid on time, we expect to have good holidays, we expect certain standards in every situation. And that’s where we can also fail.

Expectations are great in a sense that we need to know what we want, but when we lessen the grip of our expectations we tend not to get so disappointed. Your expectations need to be realistic.

Other articles you might be interested in:

How to be happy in our 'unhappy' world

How to be more assertive

6 Ways to stop your irrational thinking

Why do I 'always' need to be in a relationship

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