How I Beat My Fear Of Happiness (And You Can Too)

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” — Mahatma Gandhi

Whenever I try to be “happy” for one reason in life, something always fall out of place. Maybe I don’t deserve happiness at all.

This was me few years back.

It was horrible. As if some dementor was always at guard, ready to suck my happiness whenever it came my way. After years of shunning away from joy, and searching for hope, I finally came across this on line forum, where I discovered I am not the only one with the problem. Many people have experienced this fear, which is more commonly referred as “Cherophobia” — The Fear of Happiness.

Have You Ever Felt Afraid To Be Happy?

This is what I felt when I was too scared to be happy.

  1. I denied happiness when it comes your way
  2. I resisted myself from doing the things that made me happy
  3. I felt I didn’t deserve to be happy
  4. I doubted people I love
  5. I was disconnected from reality
  6. I felt guilty when I was happy, and I became sad again.

Why Fear At All?

  1. Past experiences, where a traumatic experience followed a happy incident.
  2. Excessive stress and worry can lead to a stage where a person starts questioning anything good that passes his way.
  3. It can be a learned response. A parent, grandparent, siblings, or a close kin may continuously alert the person against being excessively cheerful as it ‘welcomes misfortune,’. Stressed guardians can likewise make a domain which can impact the phobic.
  4. It is arguable, but some psychologists do argue that phobia run in genes.

How I Overcame The Fear

‘Happiness lies in the small things’ — The moment I was able to make myself understand this simple inevitable rule, things were not that difficult anymore.

There are so many small things that make us happy, be that a favorite dish for dinner, or a simple coffee with an old friend. I learned to be happy in the everyday small things and could see happiness from a whole new perspective.

I told this to myself everyday — “You deserve to be happy. Accept what makes you smile and let go of what made you cry.”

Just because you are scared of losing, do not deny the good things that you have now. If there is something in the past that is holding you back, leave it there. Remember that we cannot change, forget, or edit our past — we can only ‘accept’ it.

I went for nature walks every week, I poured all my thoughts in my Thought Journal, and I meditated for 30 minutes everyday.

Fear comes from the contemplations of future or injuries of the past. When you are careful and totally right now, you normally turn out to be free of dread. One of the most straightforward approach to mindfulness is to bring attention to your breath. Take a couple of full breaths when you begin feeling on edge, and you will see how it counteracts with the stress and tension.

I did more of what I love to do, I nourished my creativity, I pushed myself to get back my social life — I started living for myself.

Do no wait for something or someone to make you happy. Practice positive thinking and be grateful for even a small favor someone does. Follow the four simple rules of happiness:

  • Appreciate when you like something
  • Apologize when you are wrong
  • Expect, but reasonably
  • Be thankful when someone helps

If it seems your fear is beyond self-help, go for a professional guidance. For a start, you can do on line or off line group talks (like I did) where you can communicate with people having similar problems. If it’s worse, talk to a therapist or a mental health professional. It is always okay to ask for help when your well being is at stake.

Happiness and pain are the flip sides of a coin, both are as genuine and as unavoidable. So keep up the good work, embrace what life has to offer, and be in charge of your own happiness.

Thank you for reading.

Counselor, Mental Health Writer, Blogger, Passionate Jewelry Maker, Travel Freak, Bird-lover. Say hi at deckoratestudios@gmail.com