What is happiness? For me it’s a feeling of lightness inside, a sense of calm and inner peace, a palpable joy. It’s the opposite of the heavy, agitated and worried feeling, the tight stomach, the sense of foreboding that comes from fear or unhappiness.
It’s natural for us all to feel both, but sometimes life becomes out of balance with too much of the agitation and fear and very little real feelings of happiness and contentment.
That may be partly because of the environment we are in, at work and at home. Most of us ultimately have a choice about where we live, who we live with and where we work. But, we choose largely through fear, not to exercise that choice. Instead, we search for happiness in buying things, or experiences, or drugs and alcohol. All of them costing us money and often also deteriorating our core wellbeing.
Of course we are brainwashed by school and society, as well as the powerful and pervasive marketing machines of the giant corporations, to believe that we will find happiness in whatever product they are trying to sell. Society tells us in all sorts of subtle ways that happiness comes from a house, a mortgage, a partner and two children, from a “good” job… Whilst some of these things can indeed form a foundation for happiness, they do not apply to all.
Happiness is, in fact, an inside job.
It begins with a feeling of inner calm, a realisation that what we have right now in our life is enough. It is an acceptance of where we are, an ability to enjoy the moment.
The change for me, like many people, took a little time and work. Thankfulness every morning before I get out of bed is a core ingredient, for that underlines what is already in my life, and helps curtail the tendency we all have to think “I will be happy when…” Instead it helps me feel happy now. Indeed I always feel a smile spread across my face during the few minutes I say thank you in my head to God/the universe.
Daily meditation helps foster a calm inside, and helps me resist the temptation to let outside events like a storm blow away my happiness. It also helps me watch my thoughts and words, and steers me clear of an inner journey of negativity. It took time for me to learn this, indeed I will always be learning, for I am human. Still, from time to time, I feel the tightness of stomach, (often for me that’s at the time of the full moon), and I simply accept it and let it blow through. If it happens I might meditate a little more, or take myself into nature, change my environment, but I know that buying something is not the answer, even if I may be tempted.
Extra exercise is another perfect remedy. To reset my mood, a simple long walk in the countryside or by the beach, maybe listening to gentle music or a walking meditation works well. Exercise, like meditation, is a foundation for happiness, it’s showing ourselves love and kindness and respecting the body we have been given,
Eating the right food every day is also part of the same equation.
When all these foundations are in place, then its time to tackle any fundamental blockages to happiness in your life. Make a dream board and work out what it is that you really want. How would you like to construct the life of your dreams? What would it look like?
What would you do?
What relationships do you want to end, or rekindle?
Where do you want to live?
We have a whole section related to dream boards on thinkmiracle.org to help you build your dream board.
Our online course can help you through all these steps to construct a life of happiness. You can become the architect of your life instead of a passenger on a rudderless ship.
Join me and build the life of your dreams as I did.
Part 2 to follow…