Emotional Wellbeing


Mandy Kloppers

Why you’re unhappy

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Why you’re unhappy

There can be many reasons for why you’re unhappy. In the post I will list the most common reasons for unhappiness. These come from stories and examples that my clients have related to me.


I wholeheartedly agree with the saying, “when you’re in your mind you’re in enemy territory”. We tend to default to the negative and spend time worrying over things that may never happen. Limit your “what if” thinking and remember thoughts aren’t facts.


Facing the truth can be painful and threatening and many of us suppress the reality of what is going on around us. Thing is, until we face up to things we will still be unhappy even when we pretend everything is fine. Cognitive dissonance (when we possess conflicting beliefs, attitudes or behaviours) will emerge when we are in denial and not living the life we feel is the right one for us.

Negative filter

When we only focus on all that is wrong we tend to see a very bleak picture of the world. Learn to be more appreciative of the good things too, no matter how small.

Playing it too safe

When we live in our comfort zone and never try new things, it can lead us to feeling stagnant and without meaning or purpose. Get out there and experiment. Set yourself some goals…Be brave.

Living by too many ‘rules’

When we have too many rules for living we tend to be more unhappy. The more rules we have the easier they are broken, causing stress and anxiety. Learn to identify your rules for living and challenge them. They often take the form of “if this…then that”, For example: If I don’t please others, no one will like me. Some rules for living create utter misery. The less you have the better.

Taking life and yourself too seriously

A sense of humour is a great weapon to alleviate unhappiness. See the funny side, try to relax and enjoy life rather than seeing everything as a catastrophe.

Trying to control things beyond your control

There is a huge distinction between what we can and what we can’t control. Make sure you know the difference.

Remember the serenity prayer:

grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Non acceptance of uncertainty

No one has 100% certainty in life – learn to work with it rather than against it. Acceptance and tolerance of uncertainty is helpful for happiness levels.


When you buy into the image others let you see, you can end up feeling inadequate. What you see on the outside though is an incomplete picture of the full reality. Don’t be taken in by what others show you – Facebook is the worst platform for this. Learn to focus on your own life and where you want to be rather than loking at false comparisons.

As you can see, there can be many reasons as to why you’re unhappy….the above are just a few. Learn to be psychologically flexible, laugh more and live in the moment for increased happiness and contentment.

Mandy X