Think Different Theory

how to be happy

How To Be Happy (Regardless Of Your Circumstances)


In this episode, I talk about what it takes to be happy.


A lot of people talk about chasing happiness. People talk about these things and they say – Oh, money’s not going to make you happy or fancy things aren’t going to make you happy.

It’s true – it’s not gonna make you happy, but they never really give you the reason why behind that. So I want to break it down for you in this episode.

I explain WHY material things won’t make you happy – like I actually break it down. I show you WHY happiness is a choice, and HOW to start shifting your mind to make that choice.


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January 23, 2019


Be sure to follow me on Instagram @joshforti


I got news for ya, if you’re just not happy now, if you’re not happy right now with your current life, your current situation, and where you are at right now, then a new car, your dream job, lots of money, starting a business, traveling the world, whatever it is that you think is going to make you happy is just not going to make you happy, but I want to explain why…

00:25 You are now entering a new paradigm. So, here was my issue. I wanted to find the answers to life’s biggest questions. Things like how do I become happy and live with purpose? How do I make more money doing what I love and what does it mean to be truly successful in all areas of life? My name is Josh Forti @joshforti on Instagram and I ask life’s biggest questions and share the answers with you. My goal is to help you find purpose, happiness, and open your mind to new realms of possibility by helping you think differently about everything you do know and understand on this podcast. We think different. We dream bigger and we live in a world without minutes. This is a new paradigm. Welcome to The Think Different Theory.

01:09 What’s up guys? Welcome back to another episode of The Think Different Theory – episode number 13. We’re gonna be talking about happiness and how to be happy essentially. What goes into actually being happy and really talk about why if you’re not happy now. You’re not going to be happy when you think whatever’s gonna make you happy, happens. All right? Because I see a lot of people talk about being happy. A lot of people talk about chasing happiness. A lot of people talk about these things and they say like, Oh, you know, money’s not going to make you happy or fancy things aren’t going to make you happy. It’s not gonna make you happy, but they never really give you the reason why behind that. And so I want to break down why you won’t be happy then and how to be happy right now.

01:55 And I really want to go through and talk about how I became happy. The day that I really truly became happy with myself and became happy with life and it actually had nothing to do with the amount of money I’ve made. Has nothing to do with the accomplishments that I have done or anything like that. In fact, I have two stories for you here today, kind of they go hand in hand the day that I allowed myself to recognize that I could be happy without things and then the day that I actually became happy about these things and we’re gonna dive into that. So by the time you’re done with this episode, I really want you to be able to take a step back and reflect on your life and really choose to be happy today. And I think as we dive into this, I think is important to note that this usually doesn’t happen overnight.

02:44 It’s not something that you’re just going to wake up. Like if, if right now, like your entire life you’ve been chasing, chasing, chasing, you know, like if you were like me, I’ll Lamborghini right? I’ve wanted a Lamborghini my whole life as long as I can remember, I just, yeah, that’s like the pillar of success. Me At a young age. Like I wanted a Lamborghini in my twenties. All right, that’s my goal. Um, and I thought that was gonna make me happy. I also thought the ability to live in a high rise apartment like around like a penthouse at 35th floor. Like I think that was a, you know, another definition of happiness for me if I ever made a million dollars or when I make a million dollars, I thought that would make me happy. And if you’re chasing things like that, like I was, those things are never going to make you happy and I want to talk about that because I just don’t think enough people really are open and honest about themselves.

03:29 But those things don’t happen overnight if you’re there and you’re just like, have you been chasing that your whole life? And then you’re going to listen to this episode. You, you’re probably not gonna wake up tomorrow and just like snap your fingers and go and like never craved those things again or. And not that you shouldn’t create those things. I mean you should, uh, I think, you know, goals and benchmarks are very important. But, um, I want to talk about that shift because so many people, I think they think that, you know, being happy or accomplishing some goal, whether that’s like, you know, going out and making the mental shift happens overnight. They’re like, man, if I, if I can’t just choose to be happy overnight, I’m a failure. It doesn’t work for me. If I can just choose to do whatever it is and I listened to on this podcast, or if I can’t just shift my mindset in one day that I can’t actually go and achieve success.

04:16 And that was me right when I first started. I had this, this, um, this weird. And I guess a lot of people have it. You probably have this as well if you’ve experienced this where it’s like someone tells you about this mental thing and it sounds really, really good, right? Like, Oh, this mental shift that you have to make, but then you like assume that you have to like go and see results from it and make progress with it right away. And it’s not always that way. And most of the time it’s not. Most of the time you won’t see the results of it for, you know, days or weeks or months depending upon what it is, but I want to actually just go through and show you that if you start thinking this way, eventually one day you’re gonna wake up and you can be happy, you can be happy with where you’re at in life right now in that.

04:58 And that’s what happened for me. So let’s dive in because I think this is a really important episode because I’m all about people’s happiness, right? And, and I want to clarify this as well. I think. No, I know happiness is different than fulfillment. Alright. Happiness and fulfillment are different things. And maybe I’ll do an episode specifically on that. Um, but happiness is what we’re talking about here today because fulfillment comes, I think from a whole different level of a whole nother topic. So let’s dive into this whole happiness conversation. I remember the day that I allowed myself to like start becoming happy with where I was at in my life. Okay. So my whole life I have always wanted a Lamborghini. Alright. I always have. That’s been my thing, I’m like this and I and I have my Lamborghini picked out. I know what I want, I know what model I want, I know I want a convertible, I know what color I want, I know know everything about that dream car.

05:58 And for me that was a success. And the other thing that I, I’ve always wanted ever since I really like got into this social media game and like, you know, ever since I started traveling more and wanting to, you know, see things went back when I lived on the farm. It was more of like I wanted this really big nice house. But for me now like my goal for the last four or five years ever since I got into this game was a. I thought it would be really cool to live in like a penthouse style apartment. I never really needed like a huge, massive apartment like Iraq recognized. Like for me that is kind of pointless for me to have this huge house like a penthouse or whatever. Especially if it’s just me that maybe when I’m married and have kids, but for me like a high rise, 35, 30 6:40 story or 40 level apartment overlooking the city and if possible, overlooking a waterfront was like, to me was like the epitome of like if I had that I have my Lamborghini, I’d be set for life, I, I’d be happy.

06:54 Right. And so my whole life, I’ve, I’ve chased this. I’m like, man, I’m going to get there. I’m going to have a Lamborghini before I’m 30, I’m going to go out and I’m going to make a million dollars. I’m going to have this high rise apartment. I’m gonna do all this. And uh, last year in it was march of 2018. I was still chasing this. All right. So this is a relatively new shift for me in the last year and a half or so. But last year of March I had, um, basically a dream come true opportunity. I had the ability to go and move into a 35th floor high rise apartment, the two bedroom apartment. And it was in Chicago where I’ve always wanted to live, um, ever since I decided that I wanted to live in a city and it not only was on the 35th floor, it was the floor below the penthouse and it overlooked the Chicago Bears stadium, like it was high enough to where you can actually kind of see in a little bit into the stadium and it overlooked the water over the one side, like Bear’s stadium, then the water and then the city on the other side.

07:56 And so I remember I went and I toured it with a friend of mine. Got Me. No, have my recorder there. And we walked through everything. And uh, I got approved. I got approved for it. I would sign, I’ll tell you, it was $3,500 a month I think. So it was a good chunk of change, but nothing crazy wild. But we negotiated a really good deal with them. I think it was like a $5,000 a month apartment, but they were doing a sale and we negotiated $3,500 bucks a month. I could afford it. Money wasn’t the issue. I was ready to go and I remember standing there overlooking like this Bear’s stadium and I remember overlooking the water and I remember looking over the city and I remember thinking to myself, you know, this is everything that I’ve ever wanted in a house, in an apartment or whatever, you know, whatever you wanna call it in a place to live.

08:46 And I just don’t think this is going to make me happier than where I live now. Like I just don’t know it. I’m just not feeling it. Like I’m excited and this is all I’ve ever wanted. But I don’t know, like is this actually going to make me happy? Because if it doesn’t like, Oh man, that would be a terrible thought. And I remember sitting there thinking and doubting whether or not this was actually going to make me happy. And uh, as we left, we got approved for at 24, 48 hours or whatever wants to make a decision. We got in the car and I was borrowing my friend’s Lexus at the time, a little Lexus SUV, and we were driving out of Chicago like back to where we were staying. I was staying at my, at my friends house there and he lives in the suburbs and I remember as I’m sitting there in traffic driving out of Chicago, looking in the rearview mirror back up at the city and thinking, you know what, I am not going to be any more happy here in Chicago than I am in Omaha, Nebraska where I live currently.

09:44 And this was a defining moment in my life, right? I mean, it truly was. I didn’t recognize it at the time, but I was seeking validation. I was seeking happiness. I was seeking whatever this was through a, through a house, the real car, through money, though, through material objects. And I’ve always been told, and you’ve probably heard them a million times, like money and those things won’t make you happy. But I never understood why. All right. And so, uh, I ended up speaking at the event I was speaking at, flew home, went back to my apartment and I sat there and I really, really thought about this because I got home to my boring apartment in Omaha. And it was like, why didn’t I do it? Why didn’t I actually go, oh, and I have the money. I’m single at the, at the time I was single, uh, why don’t like, I don’t know, just do it.

10:36 It’s all I’ve ever wanted. And I recognize that my life was moving so fast that I somehow, subconsciously, I don’t know what it was, but I recognized that that wasn’t going to make me happy and if I kept moving that way so fast that I was going to lose myself and get caught up. And I really wanted to understand happiness because I recognize that if that wasn’t going to make me happy, I had to figure out what would. So I set out to figure out what it was that was going to make me happy. What happiness even mean. Right? And so, um, the first thing I did of course was I went to Google and I typed in a, the definition of happiness. All right? And so the definition of happiness is the state of being happy. And I’m like, okay, well that’s great. So what does happy mean?

11:19 And it says feeling or showing pleasure or contentment. And I’m like, okay, well if that’s happiness and that’s like what it means to be happy, like how do I go and do that? Because for me, I always want more and I feel like if I’m happy now then I’m going to lose my drive to move forward and want more. And I was just all confused. And so I was like, okay, like how does this even work? And I remember reading a quote and you’ve probably heard it right? I know I’ve said it a lot before, if you’ve been following my content for a minute, now you’ve probably heard me say this and I’m actually wearing a shirt right now that says it. And that is happiness is a choice. Okay? And so I heard this quote and I was like, happiness is a choice. I don’t know, get that, what does it even mean?

11:58 And so I sat down, I was like, all right, I’m going to choose to be happy, and I sat there and I try to be happy, I try to be happy and I tried this for a day and I’m like, I’m still stressed, I’m still overwhelmed. What the heck’s going on? Like I can’t choose to be happy. I did it for another day and another day and another day and I was like always trying to like figure out like what is, what does it even mean to be happy? How do I choose to be happy? And I recognized that by you doing that, like by consciously being aware of trying to choose to be happy all the time, like at times I was so mad at myself, I was like, oh, why am I not happy? Right. And that was not an exact opposite of what I was going for.

12:30 But then there were other times when I truly felt better. I truly felt like I was happy with life. I really enjoyed life a little bit more and I’m like, okay, what’s the difference between this? And I remember going in, I’ll never forget this. Um, I, there’s a bar that I go to actually, um, it’s called the good life and I was sitting there and I was talking to one of the servers that was there and I drive a, I’d have a relatively nice car. I drive a brand new jeep grand Cherokee. So nicest car I’ve ever driven by far. And uh, when I got it, it had I think 23 miles on it. Alright. So it was brand spanking new and I remember sitting there talking back and forth and they were like, oh my gosh, you drive a jeep grand Cherokee. Like it’s brand new.

13:14 I was like, yeah. They’re like, oh my gosh. Like that is my dream car. I would be so happy if I had that car. And I was like, wait a second, wait, wait, wait, wait. I have that car. I’m not happy. Like, what do you mean? And I didn’t say this to them, but I remember thinking it and I’m like, they are telling me that they got their dream car, that they will be happy, but I have their dream car and I’m not happy. So I wonder, I wonder if I got a Lamborghini that probably wouldn’t make me happy either because then I would just be a nicer car and yeah, I could brag on it and I could boast on it. But at the end of the day, it’s still just a car, just like my apartment was still just an apartment. It was just a place to live.

13:50 Yeah. It might’ve been nicer, but like it didn’t. I didn’t actually like make me happier. And so I was like, why is that? And then this hit me. Okay, this really, really hit me hard and I got news for you. Okay. If you’re sitting there right now and you’re thinking, man, if I just get a car, a nicer car, I just get my dream job. I just make a million dollars or I get more money. I just go and I, you know, travel the world or starlight dream business, whatever it was, right? Whatever that thing is that you’re chasing the thing right now in your head that you think that if I just have x, if I just do x, if I just accomplish x, if I just, whatever it is, then I’ll be happy news flash for you. You’re not going to be happy. It’s not going to make you happy when you get there.

14:37 You know how I know because somebody else in this world right now is looking at your situation and thinking that is success. They’re hoping for the car that you have. They’re hoping for the fact that you have a cell phone and they want one. You’re more fortunate than millions and billions of people on this planet. Whether you recognize it or not, the fact that you’re listening to this podcast right now means that you’re so much further along and have so much more than so many more people, and I was like really? Like blown away by this fact. When I realized this and I recognize that I was putting myself in a cage. I was literally caging myself and saying I can’t be happy until I have these other things. That’s what I was telling myself. And then I had this realization that, oh my gosh, uh, everything that I have somebody else’s wishing for and it’s something, I mean, the stuff that I have now is what I used to wish for when I was broke, when I didn’t have anything and I’m still not happy now.

15:27 So something else has to be what causes happiness and sadness. Something else has to be what, you know, what it means to be happy and be content and just live a blessed life or everything is good. And so I remember getting home that night and thinking about this and being like, oh my gosh, okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Somebody else is looking at what I have as their dream and they think it’s gonna make them happy and it’s not making me happy. And then I started like researching this a little bit more, and then I recognize that like in our thinking back to like when I would go on missions trips when I was younger or when I would hear stories from missionaries and they would tell me that these people that had nothing, that had dirt floors, right, that had no air conditioning, no running water, like barely had clean water.

16:09 They were some of the happiest people that they’d ever met in their life. And I’m like, ah, why am I not happy then? And I recognized that at that point that happiness actually was a choice because happiness is simply the act of seeing the good inside of things. Happiness is looking around and being so thankful for what you have right now. Happiness is not settling for less. Happiness is not not wishing for more. Happiness is not going out there. And you know, Oh, uh, always being let down because you see the good in people and they don’t deliver. Happiness is choosing to see the good in everyone. Choosing to see the good in life. Choosing to recognize that right now, whatever you have, you’re blessed with, you are blessed to be alive. You have the ability to go play this game of life and you feel like you got to be alive to do it.

16:58 You have that opportunity and you’re so blessed with those things. That’s happiness. Happiness is choosing to go and say, oh my gosh, I am so blessed to have two arms and two legs, and if you don’t have two arms and two legs, it’s saying, I am so happy to have two arms and one leg or whatever it is because that’s more than some people have. That’s more than I could have. Happiness is going out there and saying, you know what? Regardless of what the circumstances, regardless of if I lose $5,000 or make $5,000,000, I’m going to choose to be happy right now because positivity and the happiness state of mind that choosing to see the good in life is a choice. Pessimism, optimism. Those are a choice. You can say, oh, I’m a pessimist, or I’m an optimist. I naturally see the bad and things right nationally.

17:44 The good thing is whatever you can train your mind, you can look around and you can be thankful for the things that you had. Yes, it is. It is easy to get caught up in what you don’t have is easy to get caught up in the things that you want, but every single day you have to wake up thankful every single day. You have to wake up grateful every single day. You have to make the conscious choice just to see the good side of things and this is not something that happens overnight. Like I said at the beginning of the episode, this is something that took me weeks and weeks and weeks and months and months and months and I’ll. I’ll never remember the day that I woke up. I woke up and I walked out on my porch and I looked over Omaha and a little view that I have from my balcony and I breathe in the fresh air and I went, I’m happy.

18:26 I’m happy to be alive. I don’t need more money. I don’t need a nicer car. I don’t need a high rise apartment. I don’t need somebody else in my life to make me happy. I don’t need what you know. I don’t need the approval of others. I am just going to choose right now to be so ridiculously thankful and happy for the things that I have around me and go, thank you. Thank you God. Thank you for giving me the things that I have and not settling. Not Saying I don’t set big goals, not saying that other things don’t excite me. Other things don’t fulfill me. Other things don’t, you know, drive me to go be better, but I am simply saying thank you for allowing me to live. Thank you for giving me my health. Thank you for giving me my family. And when you actually choose to see the bright side and things and to be an optimist and you go, hmm.

19:17 You know what could be worse and you choose that your life will change forever. I have had really, really bad days before and gone to bed. Perfectly happy. Why? Because when I lose $5,000 or $15,000 or I lose a big client or I go and I’m super stressed out about something I know and have trained my mind and it’s something that you have to consciously train your mind to do. You have to be intentional about it is not gonna happen overnight, but I’ve trained my mind and you can train your mind to recognize the good in things and when you first get started, some of the times when you make this decision, you’re going to be like, ah, couldn’t be worse, but at least I’m still here. But guess what? That little step in that right direction. Even if you’re. You’re kind of doing it begrudgingly.

20:04 Even if you’re. If you’re not truly understanding of it, simply the fact that you’ve gone out there and made the effort to actually see the bright side of things and to actually not complain. The the active act of not complaining, of not being like a all the time is putting you on the path to being happy. And I want to really stress this because I’ve said this before to some people and they’re like, well, Josh, if I just choose to be happy all the time that I’m going to lose my drive, then I’m going to, you know, lose my motivation to do what’s next. No, you’re not. Not if you’re doing it right now, if you’re actually choosing to be happy because happiness as I am happy and I choose to see the positive in life right now and I will continue to strive to be better and I will continually strive to make myself a better person to go do what fulfills me to go do.

20:49 It drives me. Why? Because those things will also make me happy. Doing those things allows me to stay in a positive state of mind. I have to be actively moving forward. If I sat around and did nothing all day, it would be very, very hard for me to stay happy if I didn’t do what fulfilled me on a daily basis and went out there and actively like was trying to get better. That would make me unhappy and it would be harder for me to choose to be happy. Now, if you’re in a job that you hate right now, that doesn’t mean you can’t be happy. What it means is that you sit back and you go, I am so thankful for the ability to work. I am so thankful for the ability to pay my bills. Am I doing what I love on a daily basis right now?

21:26 Probably not right now. I’m really not right. I don’t. I would rather not be in a factory. I’d rather not be waiting tables. I’d rather not be, you know, working at a bank or wherever it is that you’re doing that you don’t like, but I am grateful and happy that I had this ability to live life and to experience life and to be a light and and shine to those around me and I am so happy for the ability to go chase my dreams. I am happy for the ability that I have the Internet to go learn. I’m happy for the paycheck that I get to be able to invest in myself. Whatever that thing is, consciously choosing to see the bright side and things is the day that your life will change forever and it is a constant drill is a constant practice, but once you do that, I’m serious.

22:07 Everything will change and at first it’s gonna be weird, especially if your mind is programmed against these things. Like I’ve met people and I used to be this person. Then when I saw people that were happy, I’m like, you’re delusional, right? Your dilute. You see the bright side of everything. The world sucks, right? No, no. Happiness does not mean that you are lower than anybody else or that you’re delusional or that you, you know, uh, I dunno like that. You’re less smart. It doesn’t mean any of those things. It doesn’t mean that we’re in a constant state of like ignorant bliss that doesn’t, that’s not what it means. It means we’re choosing to focus on the good in life. Doesn’t mean we’re naive. It doesn’t mean that we’re going to constantly be disappointed. It doesn’t mean that we’re going to settle for less. It doesn’t mean any of that.

22:54 It means that we are choosing us. Me, you means that we’re choosing to see the good in life and focus on that. Not Focus on what’s bad and focus on what’s depressing and when we spread positivity around and when we choose to be happy on a daily basis, suddenly a lot of things will fall into place because your life, your brain, your mind is going to be trained to recognize and focus on the good and focus on the opportunities that are going to bring more and more good. So I want to challenge you today to go out and to start doing things, making choices that focus on the good in life. Start doing things and making choices that opened your eyes to what you have, not what you don’t have that focus on the things that make you happy and that are positive, not the things that make you unhappy and sad and depressed.

23:47 If there are things in your life that you know are causing depression and sadness, get rid of them. If you know that there are things in your life that are causing you to go out there and be negative or that are causing you to be a negative towards other people or that bring bad energy into your life, get rid of those things because that’s going to hold you back from actually being able to go out there and be the happy person that you could be. Alright. Alright guys, this is a very, very important episode. This was a very crucial time in my life and I’m sure that we’re going to go and probably have more episodes talking about this, but happiness, the choice of being happy and choosing to see the good in life is the thing that will radically change your life in the sense it is not a house.

24:32 It’s not a new car. And guess what? If you have a Lamborghini, you can still be happy. If you drive a beat up 1994 Buick, you can still be happy. Neither one of those things are going to define who you are or your happiness. There are simply those things are. There are a are a result of hard work and value contribution to the world and a whole lot of other things, but they certainly have nothing to do with happiness. Okay. Do you have any questions on this whatsoever? Please let me know. Hit me up on the Instagram DM by the way. I love it when you guys like take screenshots of the podcast and like on your phone and tag me and I’m on Instagram. I love resharing those and, uh, showing off. You guys listened to the podcast. So please do that and let me know that you’re listening.

25:13 Let me know what you like. Let me know what you didn’t like. Little bit of a longer episode here today, but, uh, I hope you liked it. I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know in the Instagram Dm if you did or did not, as always, hustle, hustle, God bless. Do not be afraid to think different because those of us that didn’t think different are gonna. Be the ones that change the world. And by the way, we have exclusive happiness is a choice tee shirts. Do you want to get those different and we have a store button. Their shop dot think different If you want the direct link shopped, I think different. to get your happiness is a choice tee shirt. We have them there. If you want to pick those up. I’m actually wearing one right now. All right guys, thank you so much for listening. I love you all and I will see you on the next episode. Take it easy fam piece.

25:55 Yo, what’s up guys? You’ve been listening to the think different theory with myself, Josh Forti, which I like to call a new paradigm of thinking and real quick, I got a question for you. Did you like this episode? If you did, I want to ask a huge favor. See the biggest thing that helps this podcast grow and that will spread this message of positivity and making the world a better place is if you leave a review or rating and subscribe to the podcast. What that does is it basically tells the platforms that this is out on, that you liked my stuff and that I’m doing something right, so if you could take like three seconds out of your day and subscribe, leave a rating and review, I will be forever grateful for you. Also, I want to hear from you, I want to know your feedback, your ideas, and your questions for future episodes, so be sure to hit me up on Instagram in the DM @joshforti or via email