The 5 Things Keeping You From Happiness
For many of us, we deny ourselves the gift of happiness because we believe, on some level, that happiness resides out of ourselves.
“Once I have more money, then I can be happy”
“Once I finish school, then I will be happy”
“Once I lose the weight, I’ll be able to be happy”
(Is it just me, or am I starting to sound like The Giving Tree?)
What if I told you that none of those things will bring you happiness? If you’re not happy at this moment right now then you won’t be happy if you get whatever external thing you want. It’s true. Happiness is not some external force that we find and bring to ourselves, but simply a state of being. Sound complicated and mushy? Yeah, I know, but hear me out.
The power to create a happy life is yours for the taking. There are five things you must recognize within yourself and when you do – then happiness is yours.
1. Your Inner Critic
The Inner Critic is that little negative voice inside you. It tends to always cast a shadow even during the happiest moments. The Inner Critic says things like:“You’re not good enough, skinny enough, smart enough… you don’t deserve it, you aren’t special, nothing good ever happens to you”.
The Inner Critic steals happiness because it creates fear in your life. You could be enjoying a wonderful meal with your family at the dinner table, but then you imagine the house going up in flames for no reason. You could get that promotion that you’ve been wanting but then the Inner Critic tells you that you didn’t deserve it and that you won’t do a good job in your new position. Unfortunately, there is no way to shut this little voice up. You have to learn to live with it.
The good news is that positive thoughts are ten times stronger than the negativity of the Inner Critic. Learn to accept the negative thoughts for existing but that doesn’t mean you have to give them power over your life. Give the positive and loving side of yourself the strength by focusing on the joys of the present moment.
2. The Company You Keep
The people you surround yourself with have an impact on your state of mind. Negative people put our negative vibes and literally create negativity where ever they go. If you are a people-pleaser then you’ll attract people who want to use your time as much as they can. If you hang out with people who live the rock star life you’ll be partaking in that same unhealthy lifestyle.
Maybe it’s time to clean house.
It’s way easier to pull someone down than it is to lift them up.
You might have close family members who say more harmful things to you than positive. When I say “clean house” I don’t necessarily mean cutting these people out of your life forever. I don’t know the intimate levels of your relationships, only you can make that call.
Some people can still be in your life, but at a distance. Maybe some of your friends need to be phone-friends instead of weekend-drunk-fest-friends. You must set boundaries for yourself. It might feel uncomfortable at first saying, “no” to invitations or favors that are asked of you, but if you don’t stand up for yourself, who will? I’ll wait…
Here’s something I learned as a recovering people-pleaser: Boundaries actually set you free. Instead of stretching yourself too thin, saying “no” gives you the time for the people and activities that mean the most to you. Don’t let other people decide how you’re going to live your life.
3. Your Attitude
Your attitude toward life shapes your entire perception. Your attitude sets the tone for the energy you create in your life.
I have three words for you: Rompers on men
Because it’s absolutely ridiculous and makes me laugh. It looks so silly and always brings a smile to my face whenever I see a picture of one. When they started trending, I saw so much hate and anger professed against them on social media. I was shocked.
Let’s be real, a romper on a man is absolutely ridiculous but why harbor anger when you can just as easily laugh about it?
Don’t forget to keep your heart light and laugh. Sober laughter, in my opinion, is one of the greatest feelings this world has to offer. You have the ability to create a happy life by changing the attitude you project.
Start a gratitude journal– every day write down five things you’re grateful for. I guarantee that this will absolutely transform your attitude about life. It seems small but the results are huge because it opens your eyes to the blessings already in front of you.
4. Need to Control
Are you a perfectionist? I have a hard truth for you: you will never be perfect.
I know a few perfectionists who hold themselves to such high standards that trying something new is either extremely frustrating or extremely anxiety-ridden because they can’t be perfect the first time around. I know some who believe that if they don’t control everything, then nothing will get done and nothing will get done right. That is no way to live. It’s like living in a constant state of disappointment.
You need to consider the things you do have control over in your life and which things you don’t. You simply cannot control other people. You can’t make others do and say the things you want them to say. You can’t make your kids act exactly how you want them to act. People are free spirits and so are you.
Stop holding people up to expectations that they’ll never reach. Ultimately, it would be best to have no expectations for other people. Only with zero expectations of others could you see the blessing they choose to bring to your life and instead of the ones you demanded from them.
Allow yourself to make mistakes and not be perfect. Making mistakes is how you grow as a person in this world. “Perfect” is really just someone’s opinion anyway– it’s not real. Trust that the universe is always working in your best interest and relax into the flow of your life.
“If Marcus wasn’t such a little bitch, then I wouldn’t have had to punch him in the face”. ….um, no.
Your actions and feelings are 100% your responsibility.
You have to stop blaming others or situations for how you feel and act. You choose how to react to each situation.
There are really two ways to be– fearful or loving. A lot of us make the choice to react in fear- we cling to our addictions because responsible choice means facing the world. We have to be able to admit that we haven’t always made the best choices, but that doesn’t mean we have to continue the cycle.
Learn from the lessons in your life, take responsibility, and move forward. Take responsibility for your life because no one else is going to… that’s literally your one job on this Earth. Take care of yourself and strive to be the best version of who you are. Make priorities of the things that your soul needs-like a healthy lifestyle, loving relationships, and even sleep.
Now you see that the 5 things holding you back from happiness are all powers that you possess. Don’t let the Inner Critic bully you into believing you don’t deserve happiness. Surround yourself with loving and supportive people. Live life with a light heart and laugh as often as you can. Find the joy in the small moments because that’s all life really is- little moments.
Own your life by making the most responsible choice that’s right for you. Learn to let go and trust that the universe is always conspiring to help you. Your life is already full and abundant– it’s just waiting for you to open your eyes to see the gifts you have.
Hey, I'm Nicole
I'M A SINGLE MOM OF A LITTLE BOY WITH AUTISM. I SHARE WHAT I'VE LEARNED ABOUT RAISING A SPECIAL CHILD WITH TIPS FOR SELF CARE AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT