What does the word “bliss” mean to you? What does it mean to feel blissful? “Bliss” can be defined as “a state of complete happiness or joy.” You may be familiar with the phrases “wedded bliss,” “eternal bliss,” “walking on air,” and there are many more. You likely have your own personal definition of what blissful means to you.
But how can we increase bliss in our lives? That is the burning question. According to Joseph Campbell, perhaps the best-known guru of blissfulness and who suggested people “find their bliss,” the answer requires some self-examination. Campbell tells us to pay deep attention to ourselves and our sensations and to engage in some self-analysis. “The way to find out what makes you the happiest is to focus on being mindful of your happiest moments—not simply excited, not just thrilled, but deeply happy.”
Dr. Diana Raab, author of Writing for Bliss: A Seven-Step Plan for Telling Your Story and Transforming Your Life, says that to achieve more bliss, we need to target more of our energy on positive thinking rather than on complaining. If we acknowledge our feelings of gratitude and the good things that happen in our lives, we get closer to bliss.
Read about necessary detours on the bumpy road to bliss
We also can walk the path toward bliss if we are willing to be open-minded and take risks. Those who look and venture outside the box and who are willing to listen to alternatives are better able to achieve and maintain the feelings of overwhelming joy and contentment associated with bliss.
How to feel blissful
Are you ready to take a walk on the blissful side of life? Practice as many of the following tips as you can or that apply to you and allow the good feelings to develop over time.
Secret #1 Practice forgiveness
This includes forgiving yourself as well as others. Carrying around feelings of hate, revenge, fear, anger, and regret for years and even decades is a heavy burden that takes a physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual toll. Once you are willing to let go of any of these feelings that you harbor against others or yourself, you will feel lighter, more blissful. Forgiveness can open so many doors to bliss.
Secret #2 Respect your body
We each get one body but countless opportunities to respect and love it. To accomplish that, choose natural foods and products over processed, avoid chemicals and toxins in your food, water, air, and possessions, exercise regularly, get adequate sleep, and listen to what your body tells you.
Secret #3 Watch your words.
Achieving bliss is about dwelling in peace and harmony, but you can’t be peaceful if you are talking negatively about others or yourself. Words can be powerful weapons or expressions of love and concern. If you find yourself using hateful speech toward others or yourself, stop for a moment and think about what you are saying. Then turn those words around to reflect calm, caring, and understanding.
Read about be yourself and bliss will follow
Secret #4 Don’t make assumptions
This bit of sound advice is one of the four wise tenets found in Don Miguel Ruiz’s book, The Four Agreements. Based on the wisdom of the ancient Toltec Indians in Mexico, the advice is to communicate with other people as clearly as possible so you avoid misunderstandings and making assumptions. When we make assumptions about people, what they may or may not be thinking, doing, or dreaming, etc. we can find ourselves creating stories and false scenarios and making judgments. Such actions are in direct opposition to seeking bliss. If you want to know something, ask. Otherwise, do not assume you know the answer.
Secret #5 Embrace the positive
Does watching the news make you tense? Don’t watch it! Do you something hang around with people who are negative and uncomfortable to be around? Stop doing it! Are you routinely eating foods that make you feel sick but you keep doing it because they taste good? Change your eating habits! Do you hate your job? Quit or find a way to make it more enjoyable! If you surround yourself with negative energy, people, and experiences, then bliss will remain out of reach. Instead, embrace the positives in life and experience a lightening of your spirit, mind, and body.
Secret #6 Share yourself
The old adage, it is better to give than to receive is true. When you give of your time, money, efforts, passions, compassion, and kind words, you not only bestow gifts on others, you also get so much in return. Sharing yourself without wanting something in return can be a way to bliss. It may be something as simple as helping an elderly neighbor bring groceries into her house or walking a friend’s dog when they are ill, or you may volunteer your time on a regular basis for a charity, church, school, or other cause.
Secret #7 Practice gratitude
Regularly recognizing the joyful things in your life and acknowledging your gratitude for them verbally, in writing, in song, or in art is a powerful way to work toward bliss. Whenever you bring life to your expression of gratitude, it heightens your awareness of joy and attracts more joy and bliss. You might send an email to a friend or colleague thanking them for being there when you needed them or write in your journal about how the sunset made you feel peaceful tonight. Once you start identifying things for which you are grateful, you will likely find many more!
Secret #8 Connect with your intuition
We all have a sixth sense—some call it intuition—that lets us know when something is right—or wrong. This sense of knowing rises from inner energy and strength that tries to communicate with the conscious you. When you get this message, trust it. If you don’t, you may always wonder what would have happened if you had followed your intuition. You don’t want to live with regrets, because they get in the way of bliss!
Secret #9 Have more fun
Where have you penciled in “fun” on your daily agenda? You deserve a little bit of fun every day, even if it’s only for 10 to 15 minutes. Shut the door and dance like no one is watching, play a video game, take a nature walk, play with your cat, call a friend, watch a movie, soak in a hot tub, or surprise your partner with an invitation for some alone time. Don’t let life pass you by without reaching for some fun whenever you can.
According to Joseph Campbell, “I say, follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.” Are you ready to follow your bliss? How are you making your journey? What are you learning along the way? We want to know!
More articles to read on happiness, forgiveness, and gratitude.
How To Be Happy and Successful…In That Order
Sign for our newsletter, to receive our latest articles: