C.S. Lewis once said, “Don’t let your happiness depend on something you may
lose.” The world has a tendency to throw curve balls and it may feel like the
thunderstorms never cease. While external events and activities can provide a sense
of happiness and peace, enduring happiness is dependent upon your relationship
with yourself. This happiness may be buried under layers of insecurity, self-hate,
fear, and shame. In order to uncover your true potential and achieve happiness,
consider making these small changes:
1. Stay present: Live in the moment mindfully. This will allow you to stay
connected with your authentic self and keep your mind from wandering to
“what if “ statements and unrealistic fantasies. Take deep breaths focus on
the task or activity at hand rather than multitasking.
2. Let go: Let go of your perfectionistic behaviors. Embrace your flaws and
imperfections, and recognize that there is no such thing as perfect. The flaws
are part of you and your story. Consider asking the question, do you think
rocks are ugly because of their dents and chips, or trees because of visible
scars and damages? Of course not, so give yourself the same compassion and
appreciate your own natural beauty.
3. Focus on Gratitude: Be intentional about seeking joy and being grateful for
your life. When you wake up or when you go to bed, take note of one positive
characteristic or trait. Consider one positive of the day and what you are
thankful for in life. Spread the joy and love to others, by giving a warm smile
or buying a cup of coffee.
4. Form a positive identity: Too often, individuals identify with negative
issues or perceived negative parts of themselves, such as I am an addict or I
am a depressed person. Try to remove the labels that add more hurt, pain,
and/or shame. Remember that you are much more than a label.
5. Embrace your feelings: Give yourself permission to feel whatever emotion
has arisen. Don’t label your feelings as good or bad, or attempt to deny or
repress the more difficult feelings. By acknowledging your feelings, you are
actually one step closer to feeling that internal happiness. Tears are healthy
and such a powerful release.
6. Be compassionate. Treat yourself with kindness. Love yourself and forgive
yourself of past decisions or choices that you feel you did something wrong.
Allow the heart and mind to be set free, and remember that who you are
today is not who you were then.
7. Don’t Believe Everything: Remember, your thoughts do not have to define
you. YOU are in charge of your thoughts and have the power to ignore and/or
replace them with thoughts that empower and fill you up.