A psychiatrist shares guidelines for how to be happy and truly beautiful.
Does striving to be a “10″ physically bring us happiness? Why are we so dissatisfied when we’re careful about our physical appearance but neglect our spiritual side? What should we do when social networks and the media seem to reward only the external aspects of people?
These are some of the questions people ask themselves every day. We’re going to turn to an expert, a psychiatrist, to hear a professionally qualified opinion regarding the guidelines that we should follow in life if we really want to be happy.
Fernando Sarráis, a psychiatrist and professor at the University of Navarre, advocates for small daily habits that will increase our peace and joy so we can be happy. These constitute a project for us to be a “10” in our heart and mind.
What matters most is found in our character and personality
Fernando Sarráis comes to the conclusion that to be happy, what’s really important is in our character and personality, in our way of being.
Virtues are the key
The alternative to having a “10″ physique as a goal in life is to aim for being a “10” on the inside. What does this require? Cultivating virtues.
According to Aristotle, our daily actions reveal our moral virtues. According to our choices, we either strengthen or weaken them. These virtues can be grouped into four categories: prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance. In the end, all the other virtues are all linked to one of these, including cheerfulness, punctuality, serenity, prudence, generosity, a spirit of service …
We are responsible for giving these virtues priority in our lives. This does not imply neglecting our body—working to keep ourselves healthy and fit requires these virtues to some degree, and can help us build them—but it does mean giving our physique only the importance it deserves, and not becoming slaves to it.
Each person has to adapt this simple recipe to their own life, circumstances and particular behavior; different people need to work on different virtues in different ways. It will require at times hard work and sacrifice, but it will always lead to having greater peace and joy in the long run.
Every day of our life
Sarráis says, “This is a task that we need to perform every day, starting with small things. Not only at the beach when we go on vacation, but on Monday, when we have to get up early, and the day before, on Sunday when our team lost the game. Being negative about everything only leads to a life of bitterness.”