It’s almost 5 am, and instead of sleeping, I’m up writing. In search of a little inspiration, I found myself, where else? FACEBOOK, of course. I truly believe that nothing happens by chance, so it’s no surprise that Jillian Michaels (Biggest Loser), posted this wonderful article that made me want to go write. It was so great that I couldn’t wait until the morning to share it. It’s great news for a hopeless romantic, love pusher like me.
“What you resist will persist”…
What does that mean to you? From my experience, it means having my priorities all discombobulated. It means being so caught up in what people will think, say, feel about my life that I forget that my ultimate goal for me is peace and happiness, so fear and resentment stick around a little longer–actually as long as I allow it to stay, it does.
In my life, “supposed” ; it’s such an ugly word. I held on so tight to the lie of what my life was “supposed” to be (false perceptions handed down by family, friends, peers, society), that I didn’t realize that all I had to do was let go of “supposed” to reveal the truth that was already there whether I like it or not.
I want to invite you to play a game with me. It’s called The Happy Game, its fun and easy. The goal is to find new ways to be happy every day of your life for the rest of your life. It’s suitable for all ages and the game ends whenever you decide it does, but don’t worry you can always drop back in. The only rule is to do good things that make you happy. Are you game? Great!
Well, there are 31 types of happiness. One for every day of the month. How you achieve them is up to you. You can chose whichever of the 31 that you like each day, you can do as many as you like everyday, you can do repeats, you can carry this list with you or you can make a deck of cards, shuffle them–once you chose one you can have fun creating that form of happiness.
1. Amazed: Wow yourself!
2. Amused: Make yourself laugh.
3. Anticipation: Know that there is joy right around the corner. Expect it and look for it.
4. Borrowed: Celebrate someone else’s victory.
5. Celebrate: Find something to throw a party for. Big or small, new dress or a new job, new thoughts and new dreams. New love. Dance like no one is watching!
6. Cheerful: Be that person that sees the light in all things today. Be sickening with it. It’s contagious!
7. Compassion: Acknowledge someone else’s hard time today, and make it easier on them by letting them know you care. Be happy for you ability to do so.
8. Content: Be held together like glue today, no matter what happens brush your shoulders off!
9. Delight: Be giddy about something you would normally overlook today. Something small and what you would usually consider insignificant.
10. Enthusiastic: Believe in your happiness and let it show in all that you do!
11. Exuberant: Be so happy today that people can’t deny or overlook it. Let your light shine for you and everyone else!
12. Fun: If this game isn’t fun enough, play another one. Hide and seek?
13. Give: Find out how good it feels to sacrifice for the sake of others. Find happiness in making someone smile.
14. Glad: You don’t always have to do it big. Just be glad. Nothing fancy. Just glad.
15. Grateful: Focus all the things that went right in your life. Every time you have the urge to complain, counteract with gratitude.
16. Hopeful: Know that it’s coming, even if you don’t see it.
17. Humor: Get Him to the Greek, Ellen Degenerous, Kevin Hart, Dave Chappelle, Bloopers all make me laugh. What makes you laugh uncontrollably? Do it till you’re satisfied!
18. Inspiration: Find the kind of happiness that makes you feel ignited.
19. Joy: Divine Happiness. Happy because and in spite of.
20. Love: Forget about yourself today. Act from your heart. Remember love in an action word. Act!
21. Nostalgia: Smile about being happy yesterday. Be all sentimental and mushy today.
22. Optimistic: If you can’t see the light, just look in the mirror. It’s always there. Remember that today.
23. Peace: Be still!
24. Play: Be goofy. Play double dutch or watch cartoons while eating captain crunch. Are you daring enough to play with an imaginary friend today? Hmmmm?
25. Relief: Let it go and be glad that you did.
26. Satisfaction: Pat yourself on the back for just trying today.
27. Spirituality: Honor the Divine. How you decide to is up to you. Do what you do with the intent of feeling joy that can only come from deep within your Higher Self.
28. Spontaneous: Don’t think about it. Just do it!
29. Surprise: Do something unexpected for you and someone else today. Go out on a limb. Doesn’t that feel good?
30. Sweet: Be kind and flirty today. Call yourself and others cute little pet names. Got it Sweetie? Ok Big Daddy?
31. Vivacious: It’s ok, be full of it!
I bet you have some ideas already. How will you pull happiness off every day? Here are some ideas.
Shhhh…do you hear that? I guess you don’t, because it’s just me here (well, me and Ameerah and Noah, the kitties-slash-kiddies).
The TV is off. No music. No phone. If I listen with my heart and not my ears, there is certainly something to be heard. Trust me, it’s true. Go ahead and try it, take some time and cut off all of your distractions. Do it in the middle of the day, when you are most alert. Listen…What do you hear?
How could I ever write a series about happiness, without touching on the subject relationship? I could actually create a major motion picture on all the ways that my failed expectations of friends, mates and potential partners have affected my level of happiness in my 31 years of life. And I can’t say that I have it all figured out; but what I can say is that there are universal rules to this game called life, and who we attract is always going to have something to do with who we are.
I think we all understand this concept, regardless of whether or not we conceptualize it. For women, we spent tons of money on beauty products, countless hours to get shiny and appear brand new, tans, waxes, nip this and tuck that–and not to mention fitness fads and diet fixes. Men do it, too. We all go to great lengths to look great and fit the part of partner for our soul mate (if we believe in that sort of thing), or even to attract friends. Most adults that I know complain often about lack of meaningful connections, and some of us have given up all hope.
What do you think? Are our efforts to reel in our soul mate are coming from the right place?
I will leave you with this definition for today.
soul: the principle of life, feeling, thought and action in humans, regarded as a distinct entity seperate from the body, and commonly held to be separable in existance from the body; the spiritual part of humans as distinct from the physical part.
Tune in tomorrow for Part II:-)
- Soul Mate or Twin Flame (socyberty.com)
- Dreams of Soul Mate (socyberty.com)
- Why do we keep falling in love with cyborgs? [Video] (io9.com)
- Soulmates: Truth or Fairy Tale? (urbanbellemag.com)
- Achieving Happiness: More Advice from Plato (psychologytoday.com)
- Definition of a Soul Mate (socyberty.com)
- Study shows real partners are no match for ideal mate (physorg.com)
Get Free, Get Happy! Episode #3
“The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but thought about it. Be aware of the thoughts you are thinking. Separate them from the situation, which is always neutral. It is as it is.”
— Eckhart Tolle
I have a question for you. Ready? O.K., I want you to take a few moments to think about this: If you stumped your toe, would you feel it, if your mind didn’t know it? I mean, if your brain was never aware of what happened in those few seconds where you mis-measured the space between the coffee table and the loveseat? Can’t figure it out yet? Well, what if your small child started to scream from the other room at the same time. Would the diversion from your own incident, to something more important, allow you to not focus on your own pain, even if only for a moment; would you still feel your own hurt?
“We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell
When pain comes, your nerves send a message to your brain, and depending on your fears and perception of that pain, it can either be magnified or lessened. When we continue to obsess over our disappointments, we play out our emotions repetitively, and by going over the details of our painful stories our bodies feel the same tension and stress similar to what we feel if we actually going through the painful ordeal, over and over; we refuse the possibility of healing, and allow our hearts to continue to break.
When we allow ourselves to internalize our pain, we can’t forgive and we allow the people that we hold accountable for our pain power over our lives. While I believe that the pain that we feel, out of heartbreak and disappointment comes directly from our expectations of what we perceive as being perfect–we try to see things that only God can consistently give us in very human people and things–and are spiritually blinded to our attachment to them. It’s easier said than done, to not expect truth and loyalty from the people that we love 100%, but I think it’s easier to at least admit that it’s not realistic; and even if we can’t admit that aspect of taking responsibility for our own lives, I’m sure you’ll agree that no one deserves control over your peace of mind, but you. The more resentment we continue to harbor, the less truth we let into our lives. The reality is this: pain is usually a clue that we need to make adjustments in our lives. If your belt was tight enough to cut off your breathing, wouldn’t you loosen it and if your pants were falling would you not tighten it? Pain and discomfort is usually a sign of resistance of the inevitable. When we feel pain, usually it means we need to cling to what alleviates our pain (try to think permanent and spiritual on this one), and let go of what/who is causing this pain.
“Hanging onto resentment is letting someone you despise live rent-free in your head.” –Ann Landers
I have hurt in my life and begged God to make it stop. I’ve asked the question that I’m sure many people have asked, “When will the tears/pain stop?” The answer was, to my surprise, “when you allow it to, the healing will begin.” Please, I urge you, to not think it’s a human, terminal, condition to continue to go through the same emotional pain, over and over, but until we learn to let go and let God and forgive, we let undeserving situations to run our lives. If there’s the chance of getting “burned”, there is also the option to come out as pure gold in the end; If you have the power to love, you have the power to live and let go!
“The Tao Te Ching says, When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. When I let go of what I have, I receive what I need. Have you ever struggled to find work or love, only to find them after you have given up? This is the paradox of letting go. Let go, in order to achieve.Letting go is God’s law.” – Mary Manin Morrissey
- The Ultimate Guide to Motivating Yourself (dragosroua.com)
- Forgiveness (psychologytoday.com)
- Are You Hurting? (itakeoffthemask.com)
- Wendy Strgar: The Truth About Forgiveness (huffingtonpost.com)
- Letting Go (socyberty.com)
- The Key to Freedom is Forgiveness (brighthub.com)
- Does God have a Plan? (blogilliterate.blogspot.com)
- RaK added a discussion to the group The Journey of Forgiveness (humanityhealing.ning.com)
- Judith Acosta, LISW, CHT: The Trauma of Betrayal and Verbal First Aid (huffingtonpost.com)
- To Forgive, Very Simple But to Forget, is It Real? (socyberty.com)
- Find Freedom in Forgiveness (psychologytoday.com)
- “The Pain Chronicles”: The science of pain (salon.com)
- Anger Increases Pain in Women (webmd.com)
- The Pain enigma: The more scientists learn, the more mysterious it becomes (news.nationalpost.com)
Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.
I guess you can call this blog a sassy spin off and personal shout out to Byron Katie‘s “Loving What Is“. Don’t worry if you don’t know who she is, or what the book is about. Don’t even worry that this blog may not be relevant to your life–I can all but promise it is. Read on:-) Many times we think happiness is only something we read about or watch on Sex In the City (or Entourage for the fellas). When you think of happiness, even in the time of trouble, heartache and heartbreak, do you think it’s attainable? Do you know how to even get to happy, if it’s your destination?
This is not a book review, per se. I will say this about what Katie calls “The Work”: it’s a simple concept. The concept of “The Work” is the most effective, down to earth approach to self-help and overall happiness that I have ever encountered; it changed my life, and my style of coaching, forever. More importantly, it changed my mind.
It CHANGED MY MIND.
That’s a phrase that we hear often, right? Imagine this: you got accepted to a prestigious university, your parents throw you a big party and send you off. Lo-and-behold, by sophomore year, you are a drama major and contemplating running off to L.A. to pursue your dreams. Mother asks, “well, what happened?” And while a ton of things happened (you couldn’t focus, didn’t want to study, had anxiety attacks and couldn’t even pick up the heavy pre-law book that you paid $200.00 for), the most accurate and honest answer you can come up with is,
“Mom, I CHANGED MY MIND“.
Not a scholar? Well, here’s another example: for two weeks you planned on going to see the latest installment of your favorite movie. It’s a trillogy. Everytime you see the trailer or pass a billboard about your movie, you do a little dance in your seat and the corners of your mouth turn up. You don’t even care that it’s opening night and the crowd is going to be outrageous! You hate crowds, but you love the movie. You’re even brushing off your best friend’s dinner party–at least for two hours. You can’t wait! But! The day of your movie, you pull out your credit card to make your online ticket purchase, when a text message from your bestie comes through: “thx in advance 4 gracing me w/ur presence 2nite. truth be told, if it were only u n me, the celebration would still b the same.” You remember how you friend has been there for you for 15 years hell and high water, and how she never missed any of your events. Even your failed yard-sale. Yes, there’s some guilt. You put down your credit card, mentally pick out the outfit that you’re wearing to dinner, and deciede to see the movie, with your best friend the next day. What happened? Why didn’t you go see the movie?
“YOU CHANGED YOUR MIND“.
I noticed, through reading “Loving What Is”, evaluating my life, and coaching and listening to others, that we don’t realize the power that we have over our own situations. Either we don’t realize, or think that it’s too much responsibility, so we blame others for our own unhappiness. It’s a harsh reality that no one can make you unhappy but yourself. Was that a frown? Don’t worry, if you take heed to this blog, you will be smiling a lot more, so I don’t feel bad for that one (although it wasn’t my fault, lol).
Take a few seconds to think about it. I’ll wait. How many times did you change your mind about something in your life? If you’re watching TV and change your mind about what you were watching, what do you do? Do you turn the channel or do you sit there a prisoner of a rerun? OR shoes! You get all fancy for the a big event, put on your shoes and–wait, the black ones would go better–and they’re more comfortable! So what comes next? You change your shoes, right? I bet you can come up with a thousands of examples of times that you changed your mind and then changed your way. What is that you say? Your boyfriend said he liked the red shoes better–OR your girlfriend likes you in cowboy boots, so you left them on? Well then, you changed your mind from caring more about your own opinion than your lover’s. Either way, your thought brought about the action (or inaction).
I hope you’re getting the concept and the importance of changing your mind. Simply put, the first step to changing your life, is changing your mind. Looking for someone to come along and save you from all of your pain, stress, fatigue–Superman or Wonder-woman? I’ve got news for you–trust me when I tell you that I know from living and loving daily, that happiness is in your mind. Waiting for a superhero? Get up, go to the closest mirror–SMILE SEXY/BEAUTIFUL/HANDSOME/SPIRITUAL/POWERFUL, THERE’S A SUPERHERO RIGHT THERE STARING BACK AT YOU!”