In this article we reveal the best meditations for happiness and the mantra for happiness. Use these happiness meditation techniques for twenty minutes and you’ll be smiling.
Have you ever wondered why it’s hard to be happy?
So many people struggle to let themselves be happy. They fight against happiness, like they actually want to be miserable.
Maybe you tell yourself you will find happiness when you:
- Have more money
- Complete something you told yourself you’re supposed to do
- Have the perfect body
- Or some other rubbish demand you put on yourself
Listen: You deserve to be happy now.
Yes, in this very moment you deserve to feel good, to be cheerful, and to feel satisfied with your life even if you think you are not where you should be (which is one of the most common reason why people are unhappy [source]).
So just how exactly can you make yourself feel good about life?
The trick is to just allow yourself to experience happiness. Meditation can help. It gives you the ability to live mindfully and to enjoy the moments of your life, which is ultimately what feeling good is all about.
Why You’ll Love Using Meditation For Happiness
One of the best emotional benefits of meditation is that it makes us happy.
It can be hard to experience happiness. Meditation helps. It does this by letting you get out of your own way. That may require an explanation. So let’s put it this way. Right now you are living one moment of your life. However, you are probably not focusing on the present moment. You are more likely to be lost in thoughts about the future or the past, and in ideas of what is right and wrong. Those ideas and thoughts prevent you from fully enjoying the present moment. And this is where meditation comes in. It quiets the mind, reduces stressful thoughts and anxiety, and helps you to live in the moment.
When you meditate you will realise that the biggest obstacle between you and happiness is you. When you meditate, happiness will come naturally because you will no longer be stopping it. You will no longer be creating those stressful thoughts, worries, and anxieties that prevent you from enjoying life in the moment.
There are many excellent meditations for happiness. And science proves that they do indeed work.
When you use meditation for happiness you silence all those negative thoughts and worries—you know, all the things that stop you being happy, and you find inner peace.
How To Use Meditation For Happiness
If you want to know how to meditate for happiness, start by opening your mind. You can do this by focusing on the present moment.
Here’s how to focus on the present moment:
- Focus generally on the present moment. To do this, take a moment to focus on your senses. What can you see, hear, smell, taste and touch? The senses connect us to the present moment. By connecting to them we can enjoy life now.
- Focus on one single aspect of the present moment. Choose one thing around you that makes you feel joyful. It could be a sound, a smell, perhaps a memory. Focus on that one thing absolutely for a few moments. Meditate on it.
- By simply staying in the present moment you can make yourelf both mentally strong and happy.
The above are two very simple steps to help you to start feeling good about life. Now let’s look at some specific styles of meditation for happiness.
Here are the 5 Best Meditations for Happiness
- For complete guides to all these techniques, please refer to my big guide to different meditation techniques.
Arguably the very best meditation for happiness is Vipassana.
Vipassana is essentially the practice of monitoring and labeling your thoughts and emotions. It’s one of the main Buddhist methods and it is scientifically proven to make you feel more positive.
In Vipassana we meditate on the breath and then we begin to label our emotions and thoughts, as well as other things that the mind is drawn to (again, refer to the link above for a guide to this).
Labeling emotions in this way helps us to gain more control of negative feelings. When we label, for instance, feelings of anxiety and depression, we make them more tangible and more manageable. What makes this method one of the best is that it increases emotional awareness so that we feel more in control of our mood.
2. Loving Kindness Meditation For Happiness
Loving Kindness Meditation is a technique in which we visualize the giving and receiving of compassion. Not only does this make you happy, it also boosts confidene.
I’m sure you will agree with me that you feel better about life when you have the love and support of other people. However, when we are depressed we close ourselves off to these positive emotions. This is where Loving Kindness comes in. We use it to cultivate feelings of love and kindness from others, and also from ourselves.
Neuroimaging scans show that Loving Kindness Meditation changes the structure of the brain and increases arm feelings like kindness, love, compassion, and happiness.
One of the best benefits of loving kindness is that it makes us much happier.
Pratyahara is actually a type of yoga. It is a method through which we eliminate the negative influences in our lives and increase the positive influences. This tips the scales in favor of happiness and removes causes of unhappiness.
Essentially, to do this, remove anything from your life that is making you negative, and increase things that make you positive. This could include objects and possessions, other people, or anything else.
There are also other ways to use yoga for positive thoughts.
4. Mindful CBT for positive thinking
Do you experience a lot of negative thoughts? If so you should definitely try Mindfulness-Based-Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy. It’s a method used by therapists to target and change problematic thoughts.
What makes this one of the best meditations for happiness is that it targets the negative thoughts that are preventing us from feeling happy. We can then change those thoughts to more positive ones, and thereby improve our mood.
- You can also use these techniques for positive thinking.
Mantras are specific words or phrases with spiritual properties (they are similar to affirmations or spells, but are backed by science and have been used for thousands of years).
Meditating on a mantra relaxes the mind and induces specific states of consciousness.
There are specific mantras that makes you feel good. Meditate on these mantras for 10 minutes and you will notice an improvement in mood.
It has been scientifically proven that gratitude makes us happier and also helps with problems like depression, stress and anxiety. By practicing gratitude you will cultivate positive thoughts and generate happiness.
How To Meditate For Happiness By Letting Go
One of the biggest obstacles to being happy is attachments. Attachments are thoughts and ideas that we fixate on. For instance, you might be attached to the notion that you should be rich, but this is not your present reality and the attachment is preventing you from enjoying life in the present moment.
But you can’t just let go of mental attachments, can you?
- You can’t let go of your ex.
- You can’t let go of your old job.
- You can’t let go of your past.
- You can’t let go of your deceased family members (something I had to learn to do myself).
- You can’t let go because you’re not actually holding on to anything.
Pop Quiz: How do you let go of something when you’re not actually holding on to anything
You’re holding on to a weight that exists only in your mind. So how on Earth do you let go of that?
Well, let’s think about it in terms of letting go of something that does have a physical existence.
If you were trying to let go of a weight, what would you do? You would loosen your grip. Gravity would take over. And gravity would bring the weight to the floor so you don’t have to carry it anymore.
So when you let go there are two things involved. There’s your grip and there’s reality.
And if you want to let go of something in your mind you also have to let go of your grip and you also have to let gravity take it.
One half of that is a lot easier than the other half. It’s a lot easier to let go of your grip than to let gravity take it, because what on Earth is mental gravity? We’ll deal with that in a sec.
Let me recap.
We know that unhappiness is caused by holding on too tightly. We know that pain / suffering begins when we hold on to something that is changing, because our minds and reality are pulling in opposite directions. And we know that to be happy we should let go and trust life.
There was also something about gravity…? We’ll get to that.
For now we need to let go of our mental grip.
To let go we meditate. All the best meditation techniques for happiness help you to let go of that emotional baggage.
So let met show you how to let go.
How To Meditate For Happiness By Letting Go (Stage 1)
This is a quick meditation for happiness. It will take five to ten minutes and I promise you that you will be very glad that you did it. It’s all about letting go.
Follow these instructions:
- Get comfortable in a relaxing space.
- Close your eyes and focus your mind on your breathing for a few minutes (use these breathing meditations for the best experience).
- Continue to focus on your breath. Thoughts will arise in your mind. The trick here is to simply observe them. Do not fight them. Do not try to repress them. And do not attach to them. Just observe them and let them go when they go.
- Continue observing your thoughts and tell yourself that they are only thoughts. See the true nature of them. See that your thoughts are not real they’re just like little smog clouds that arise in your mind.
- This will loosen your grips on your thoughts, which is step one of finding happiness.
Believe it or not, there is a mental “gravity” and it works in the same way that gravity works.
Gravity works by creating a force to which objects are attracted. Planets create gravity. And because of that we are pull towards the ground.
Your mind is also pulled towards the ground. The ground is reality. Like regular gravity, mental gravity pulls you towards reality.
When you go through bad breakup, for instance, you are pulled towards accepting the breakup.
But (and it is a very big but) we have the power to resist gravity.
Just like your muscles can pull a weight against gravity, your mind can pull against reality. And just like with your muscles, if you pull too hard you will suffer, you will be injured, and you will be unhappy.
And that is the entire nature of unhappiness.
Unhappiness = Your Mind Pulling Against Reality
Does it seem funny that your mind works in the same way that your muscles work?
Your muscles can simply exist in the state they’re naturally meant to be in. When you just let your muscles do what they’re supposed to do you will be healthy and your muscles will be happy. And when you let your mind exist as it should your mind will be healthy and happy too.
But how do you let your mind simply exist in the state it is supposed to be in?
That’s stage two.
So far we have used meditation to let go of our grip (by loosening our thoughts).
Now we need to let go and let gravity take its course.
Essentially, we need to let things exist in the natural order. This is step 2.
Just like you let gravity take over and pull the weight to the floor, you’re about to let reality take over and take any mental weight in your mind. This will free your mind. And it will make you happy.
- As before, take yourself somewhere peaceful and relaxing.
- Close your eyes and relax
- Now you are going to let gravity take over. And the way to do this is by being mindful of your senses. So, begin to focus on each of your senses. Meditate on taste, touch, smell, sound, ad sigh. And then meditate on your own body. Pass your focus around your body, being aware of all the sensations you are experiencing.
- Continue to meditate in this fashion as you take 108 breaths.
- Open your eyes and continue to be mindful (to focus on reality). This will let reality (gravity) take over and it will make you very happy.
If you have performed both those steps you will be feeling very, very relaxed and incredibly happy. And if you haven’t actually done them yet, go ahead, do them now. I promise you they will make you feel good.
So which is the best meditation for happiness? Honestly, no one technique is better than the rest. It really depends on the cause of unhappiness, which is a very personal thing. The best strategy is to write down the primary reasons why you’re not happy. Is it because of negative thoughts? Is it because you’re not where you think you should be in life? Is it because you feel alone? Once you have written down your primary cause of unhappiness, take a look through the meditations on this site (via the menu at the top) and find a technique that specifically targets your problem.
Mantr For Happiness
f you’re finding that you haven’t been as happy recently as you perhaps could be, then this mantra for happiness will be the perfect lift you need, raising your spirit to a state of peace and happiness.
It is recommended that you sit in a relaxed cross-legged pose, making sure your spine is straight. Begin to chant “Ong” slowly (perhaps one ONG for every eight to ten seconds). You should feel the sound resonating more around your nose than mouth, and your throat should be completely relaxed. Do not worry if you cough occasionally as this is just a sign of your throat adjusting.
Continuing chanting Ong, the mantra for happiness, for as long as you like (I peronally recommend between 10 and 20 minutes).
One last thing: if it feels like you are putting yourself first by focusing on your own happiness: Good! You should put yourself first.