Sometimes this statement makes people angry. I totally get it too. I was there once, thinking that happiness wasn’t real. It was a fairytale and people who seemed happy must be faking it.
I educated myself…
I learned through reading this book, A Course In Miracles, that a miracle is a shift in perception from fear to love. It’s books like this and The Four Agreements and The Power of Your Subconscious Mind (just to name a few), that I really begun to understand that I have more power and control over my life than I ever knew.
I remember being at a store once and there was this cute couple. They reminded me of something I’d see in a romantic comedy. I couldn’t take my eyes off of them. And I couldn’t help thinking that there must be something deeper that they are hiding… something dark. They can’t possibly just be happy like that, together. I didn’t believe it because I had never honestly felt that. I always had some deep hurt I was carrying around. It’s difficult to believe in something you’ve never experienced.
Happiness is a choice.
It can be an irritating statement because it sounds like it’s easier said than done. But think of it this way. Have you ever had a horrible morning, complete shit, one thing after another pissing you off? And then, did you ever have something happen soon after that completely turned the day around? Someone made you laugh. A child did something cute and made your heart melt. You witnessed someone doing something nice for someone else…etc. And you thought… wow, that just made my whole day.
Or did you ever just stop and think, today is shitty so far and I need an attitude adjustment? I went through life letting my thoughts and emotions rule me until I realized that I could actually take control and not have to go down this downward spiral I seemed to get sucked into, day after day. Once we have this awareness, that we can take complete control over our lives, we really do have the power to live a happy life.
Whether it’s something unexpected that shifted our mood or our own awareness, in that moment, we choose what we will do with this information. I’m not happy right now. Will I be so unhappy that I ignore the joy around me? Do I want to stay miserable because it’s comfortable? I know I am unhappy and I am fine with it. Or do we want to change it? Do we want to take advantage of the universe showing us joy around us and join in on it, or do we stay where we are? That is the choice.
Some may argue that it’s their mental illness that keeps them from being happy.
I’ve suffered with anxiety and depression my whole life. I’ve been on prescription drugs. I can’t speak for anyone but myself. My experience is that those things didn’t help me. It was when I began to take responsibility for my life and do the work — looking at my life, looking at my thoughts, forgiving myself, forgiving others, loving myself — that my life began to improve. There is no magical pill that will change our lives, period.
The gift is the power to choose. The magic is in the actions we take after we’ve made the choice. The choice is ours alone. Nobody can do it for us. Happiness isn’t a lie. People aren’t always faking it. It’s possible to create happiness in a seemingly hopeless situation, because that’s exactly what I did.
❤ Leticia Rae