Be Happy!

Be Happy! It’s easier said than done, right? The truth is: Happiness is not really all that far off for most folks, if you just know where to look and what steps to take. I have seen people that the world would say: “They have everything going for them!”, and yet in spite of all their good fortune, they were miserable. And I’ve seen others that the world would ask: “How in the world can they keep going on?”, and yet despite their cataclysmic struggles, they seem to be some of the happiest people in the world. While it’s true that circumstances do have the ability to make happiness easier or more difficult to obtain, they are not the determining factor.

Scientist have invested a lot of money and spent a lot of time investigating how to obtain happiness and while they have made a lot of amazing discoveries, there still is no magic pill that can make it your reality. I too, have spent a great deal of my life chasing after happiness. There were times that I thought this or that relationship with just the right person would do the trick, but it doesn’t take you too long to realize that most everyone else is on the same journey as you. I have often fell into the trap that certain possessions, a bigger house, newer car, trendier clothes might be the fix, but they all just ended up leaving me hungry for more. I even thought that degrees, titles and prestige might do the trick, only to find that papers stack up, trophies and plaques get old, memories fade and still leave you empty and searching.

We spend most of our lives having our ego fed by the lie of all lies: The lie that says I am what I possess, what I do or what I think other people think of me. This lie causes us to chase after an elusive foe that will never be caught, but that will often get us caught up in messes that take us away from, rather than closer to the happiness we are searching for.

Now, let me state for the record that I am not an authority on happiness. I am simply one individual on a journey that has discovered a lot of what will not work and a handful of things that seem to be taking me in a more positive direction. I want to share just a few of those thoughts as we get ready to dive into 2020:

1.) To Find Happiness, Stop Looking Outside And Start Looking Inside! Most of us fill our schedules with so much activity that we have very little time for solitude, stillness and quiet time, which allows us to go within and do the “thought” work necessary to truly figure out what happiness is for us. If we don’t fill our schedules, then many of us, simply don’t take the time to pray, meditate and contemplate what is really important in life. This inability to make time for “INWARD WORK” robs us of the opportunity to take on and take out the negative thoughts that this world is continually bombarding us with. If we are not intentional about taking time to think, pray, journal and do inward work, then we will most likely never experience the happiness that we were created for and that was created for us.

2.) Take Time To Take A Breath! This may sound a little crazy, but breath is a very important part of life. The fact that we breathe in and breathe out without even thinking about it, is an amazing reality of our lives. Breath matters. Take time to think about your breathing. Acknowledge the miracle of breath coming into and out of your body. This reminds you that there is more to this life than just you. You have a Creator, Who created you as an amazing spiritual being that gets to experience this human life. When this thought really begins to take root in your life and thinking, you can’t help but to live life at a higher level and this contributes to helping you get into just the right place to experience the happiness you were created for.

3.) Practice Gratitude All Day, Everyday In Anyway You Can! I have found that an attitude of gratitude is the single quickest way to get myself adjusted and headed in the right direction. While there are many things that are not working the way I want them to, there are many things that are working better than I could dream or imagine. Often in my life I have focused on what I didn’t like, giving it all the power to call the shots in my life and missed out on all that I had to like, love and appreciate that I should have been empowering to take me in the positive direction I so desperately needed. To help me stay on the right track here are a couple of disciplines I practice on a daily basis: First thing in the morning, I say: “Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!” as my way of acknowledging I am not alone in this universe, that I have been created on purpose for a purpose and that I am grateful to my Maker for blessing me with another day. At some point during the day, I also take time to write down in my journal at least three things I am grateful for. I encouergage you to find ways to meaningfully express your gratitude, it really is a life changer.

Happiness is really not that far off and it is obtainable in your life, just start on the inside and work your way out and you will find happiness, if it doesn’t find you first!

Are You Happy?

I used to have a friend that would ask me a simple, but powerful question on a fairly consistent basis. He would ask: “Are you happy?” I would answer: “I guess?” I mean, I wasn’t sad, so the opposite is happy, so I must be happy, right? Every now I then, I would wonder to myself: “Are you happy?”, but something else would come along and take control of my thoughts and I would drift onto something else.

I see and hear a lot of people in our world today that are not happy. I think if you asked most people, they would say: “I would like to be happy, but I’m not so sure how to get there. I think a lot of folks spend the first half of their lives, just trying to figure out what “happy” is. We think we know, get it rounded up and discover that what we thought it might be, turns out to be a wrong guess. Which is exactly why I think that a lot of us tend to give up and become satisfied if “happy” just kinda crosses over our tracks every now and then.

But the truth is, we were created for so much more than that. I think one of the problems with the idea of “happy” is that we think it’s a place to be, a destination to arrive at, but it is so much more than that. One of my favorite teachers, Wayne Dyer, puts it this way: “There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.” I really do like that:  “HAPPINESS IS THE WAY!”  We just have to get our definition and understanding of happiness right and then the rest tends to fall into place.

So what is happiness? Happiness is a lot of different things and it really depends on who you are talking to. Happiness is a choice, a decision of direction that we choose for ourselves, regardless of the situation or projected outcome. Some are happy going and some are happy sitting at home. Some are happy in a noisy crowd and some are happy enjoying quiet time alone. Some are happy with abundance, while some are happy with very little. This actually gives us a clue as to what happiness really is…

HAPPINESS IS  A CHOICE!  Abraham Lincoln said: “We are just about as happy as we make up our minds to be!” That is why you can see two people go through identical situations and one will be happy and up on cloud nine and the other will be down in the dumps and ready to die. So, the one most important thing we can learn about happiness is that happiness is a choice that we get to make for ourselves.

There it is, YOU GET TO DECIDE FOR YOU! You cannot decide for anyone else, but you can decide for yourself and you, yourself can make a difference in helping others to get there for themselves. If you are going through something hard, difficult or challenging, you can be happy knowing that it is making you stronger, revealing wisdom to you and showing you a side of yourself that you never knew existed. If you are going through good times, blessings and success, you can be happy knowing that what you’ve dreamed of and worked for is a reality that makes life better, sweeter and easier.

Choose to by happy, regardless, you will be glad you did!

Feeling Your Feelings!

I hear from people on a regular basis that are looking for Mr. or Mrs. Right. They always end up saying something like: “I am just so tired of feeling all alone!” On the other hand I hear from people who have found Mr. or Mrs. Right and they often complain by saying the same thing: “I’m just so tired of feeling all alone!” As I think of my own life, I have been alone and lonely, as well as connected and lonely.

The key word in the phrase ”I am just so tired of feeling all alone.” is “FEELING“! When we truly begin to understand the power of feeling and how it has the potential to play with our emotions on levels we cannot even hardly begin to comprehend, then we may be able to start a process of healing and growth that will allow us to live life at new levels, which are actually old levels that we were created for.

We don’t like feeling feelings, because sometimes they hurt. Feelings can make you cry at the most unexpected times and for reasons that do not give you a clue as to why??? Feelings can make you feel like this whole human experience thing is overrated and quiet possibly a big ole waste of time. Most of us try to ignore our feelings by pushing them back into whatever open recesses of our phyche we can find, only to have those pesky little feelings find their way back to the main stage of our life and living.

The problem for most of us and the reason we find ourselves feeling all alone is because while we have learned to feel our feelings, we have not learned to allow them to reveal what they are really present for. Feelings do have a purpose and it’s not to get you down. The purpose is to help you take an honest look at yourself from the inside out and from the outside in. Feelings are about introspection that manifests the growth and success you were created for.

Here are a few things I am learning from feeling my feelings:

1. Every Feeling Has A Purpose! Your goal in feeling your feelings is to figure out the purpose of the feeling. Sometimes the purpose is to alert you by getting your attention and focusing it in a certain direction. Sometimes the purpose is to grow you and this growth takes place on many different levels. Sometimes the purpose is to take you to a place you are not willing to take yourself. Whenever you find yourself all up in your feelings, there is a reason. Figure out your reason and you are headed to a better place.

2. What You Feel You Feel! There is no right or wrong feelings, you feel what you feel. The trick is to open yourself spiritually, mentally and physically to allow your feeling to do whatever work it has come in your life to do. Stop looking for validation or excuse from others, do your work and experience your growth. When we start to really feel our feelings, they produce growth and blessing. There may be some pain, frustration or disappointment to work through, but once you’re through it, you see yourself at a much better place.

3. We Are So Much More Than Our Feelings! Feelings can come from many different places, represent a plethora of emotions and can be a big challenge to try and understand. They can be handy and helpful or toilsome and pesky all at the same time. One of the most amazing and beneficial lessons I am learning from feeling my feelings is that I am not limited to or by them. I am so much more than what I feel and so are you!

Live life long enough and you will discover that feelings come and go. You can be up and happy on the mountaintop one moment and down and out in the valley the next. The most important thing is to feel them, learn whatever they are teaching and grow on…