Without question, happy people stand out among us. Regardless of what they are doing at the moment, happy people always seem to be positive, energetic, and joyful. Happy people live, act, and speak much differently than their less positive counterparts.

But it’s not just what the happy people do that sets them apart. It’s what they rarely do that truly makes them unique (we say “rarely” here because we can’t be perfect but we CAN strive toward excellence daily).  Simply put – the self-control and self-awareness that positive and happy people display is truly something to behold…they make it look so easy.  So what do happy people avoid?

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” – Gandhi

Here are 7 things happy people rarely do:

1. Happy people rarely… seek approval or validation from others.

Happy people are content to be themselves… in fact, they love themselves unashamedly and unabashedly. This self-love manifests itself in approval and validation – making it unnecessary to seek either from externalities – namely, people.

Truth be told, many of us place way too much emphasis on what others think about us; so much emphasis, that seeking approval or validation from others becomes an addiction. But here’s the bottom line: we can only be the best people we can be, not everyone is going to view us in a positive light, and being you, while showing true character, is the fastest way to earning respect.

2. Happy people rarely…depend on other people, places, or things for happiness.

Speaking of externalities… happy people don’t depend on people or material possessions for their own happiness. In making a conscious decision to remove possessions, money, people, and circumstances out of the equation, happiness is derived and experienced from simply being and loving yourself.

Concisely stated – happiness is a mindset. A mindset is something that is learned, acquired, and put into practice. Our mindset has absolutely nothing to do with external influences…it can only be influenced if we let it.

3. Happy people rarely… play the victim. Rather, they play the victor.

Happy people and the victim mentality do not jive. The reason is because the happy among us have a mindset of victory and fortitude. In other words, happy people depend on the power they know they have to come out victorious. This is not to say that they won’t experience bumps and bruises, disappointments and failures along the way… they just don’t let it get the best of them.

Here’s a nice, easy formula to remember: inner happiness = inner strength. Happy people are strong mentally; winning the battle against whatever internal or external opposition that happens to confront them.

4. Happy people rarely… live in the past, nor worry about the future.

Right now, there are people all around us with innately unique gifts to offer the world and make it a better place… truly gifted people that have so much to give. But they won’t. They won’t because of mistakes made in their past and can’t let them go for whatever reason. This is a tragic reality of the world we live in: some people will never realize their rightful future because they can’t see anything beyond their past.

To be truly happy and realize our potential, we must not live in the past nor worry much about the future. The past is just that…an old event – an event that has no real significance to the true character inside.

5. Happy people rarely…hold onto grudges.

In holding onto the “past,” grudges are another unfortunate result of doing so. These grudges can be within us or with others. The disappointment that results by making a decision that you regret, or disappointment from someone having wronged you is normal. The problem is when we hold onto these grudges for too long.

The answer lies in forgiveness – of ourselves and of others. We cannot turn back the clock to make different decisions, nor can we alter the motives of people who have wronged us. The most powerful thing that we can do recognize the error or affront, accept it, grow and learn from it, and let it go by forgiving yourself or someone else.

6. Happy people rarely… live dishonestly.

To live an honest life takes an incredible amount of courage, fortitude, and character. Why? Because our world has become embraced an altered reality – one in which lying is simply something that “everyone does.”

Regardless of what others may think, dishonesty is toxic because it completely skews our understanding of what is real, good, and normal. When we live in a society that accepts lying as the norm, we are susceptible to its influence. As happy people, we must remember that truth is natural, truth is real (by definition, too!), and truth is good in all situations.

 7. Happy people rarely…accept negative environments.

Our environment has a significant effect on our mindset. We must not allow our environments to disturb our right to inner happiness and peace.

Toxic people and toxic environments just exude negativity. Try walking into a place where everyone there hates their job – the bad aura and atmosphere quickly resonate. The same thing goes for people and places that continuously embrace a negative mindset.

By remaining positive and respectful with all people, you may indeed be helping change their outlook on life and bring some hope. Remain mindful that everyone has a story, and some people may be experiencing some hardship that you are unaware of. Also, remain mindful that you have a right to be positive and happy…when someone or somewhere begins to negatively impact this, you have the right to walk away if you so choose.

What do you try not to do to remain happy in your own life?