Happiness – A very priced commodity
“Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.” – Abraham Lincoln
I have five questions for you.
1. Do you frequently feel you are in the pursuit of happiness?
2. Do you feel everyone around you is accomplishing the very things you long for?
3. Are you battling with anxiety over your life not going in the direction you desire?
4. Have you been told things will work themselves out but find it difficult to truly believe this?
5. Do you sometimes feel unhappy even when you accomplish things you believed will bring you happiness?
I can relate with you if your answers to some or most of these questions is a resounding yes! I am strong enough now to admit, without any shame or reservations, that I have experienced and I am still experiencing some of these things. We are all human and we all at one point in our lives will go through not so good experiences. It is just that some people have it a bit easier than others. But what is life, if you only experience the good? Pretty boring, I would say!
I moved back to my home country, Sierra Leone from America in 2012. The move tested me. It tested my strength, my ability to adjust, my faith. The transition brought with it feelings of insecurity, anxiety about my future, doubt and anger. I was afraid to speak to anyone about my feelings for fear of being rejected, laughed at and perceived as weak. I felt down because my identity before the move was heavily tied to what I did on the outside…my job…my studies…my independence…my relationship. Most of these things were taken from me in the space of months. I felt lost. I felt stagnant. I felt disappointment. Happiness was far from me.
In time, I gathered enough courage to explore who I was without those things as an anchor. I tried to face who Shirley was stripped off from all the things I believed made me happy. I was scared to really dig deep and do some soul-searching as I was unsure whether I would like what I discover about myself. During my soul-searching journey, I discovered six truths that helped me be a happier person. I hope these truths will motivate you and get you on the path of true happiness and joy.
Six Truths That Might Help You Catch Happiness
1. You should not rely on materialistic things to assess your self-worth.
Do not get me wrong, material things are great. Having a fancy house is wonderful, getting a PhD is awesome and commendable, landing that great job that makes others go green with envy is a great ego booster. But true happiness does not come from the acquisition of these things. It comes from within.
P.S. it is ok if you have not achieved all these material things just yet. Know that keeping your dream alive, not accepting no for an answer and through perseverance and hard work, you WILL achieve the desires of your heart…in time.
2. You are not your degree. You are not the hurt you experienced from failed relationships. You are not the financial debt you have. You are not your career. You are not even the negative things your parents have told you. You are not the negative perceptions people have of you. You are not the negative perceptions you have of yourself.
Do you know who you are? You are a strong, beautiful/handsome, full of life, smart, interesting, loveable individual. You just have to believe it enough and it will start to work within and through you.
3. If you are hoping and waiting to be truly happy when every aspect of your life is exactly the way you want it, you are sadly mistaken. There is no age or point in time that your whole life will ever be the way you desire it. Happiness is NOW! Happiness is a CHOICE! It happens when you allow it to happen in your life.
4. You are not the only one going through these things. People are good at masking their true feelings. Secretly, they battle with things you would be surprised at!
5. You may be killing yourself to be more like someone else. Funny thing? That person might be secretly admiring you. Even more, the person might be trying to be just like you. Go figure! Be yourself. Embrace yourself, your flaws and all. Be happy with who you are! But always strive to be the best version of you!
6. The best things in life are free. Lol, I know…corny. But it is the absolute truth. Anything that you can buy with money, will most likely not give you permanent true happiness. Permanent happiness comes from within, from appreciation of who you are. It does not depend on what people see on the outside but how you view yourself on the inside.
Bonus point: You should be able to love yourself in good and bad times. When that happens, happiness will always, always be with you.
I hope this encourages you. It is not the easiest thing to achieve. Trust me, I know. But the will to want it and want it for the proper reasons and on the best foundation is the key to getting it.
Pssst! Check out these eight life changing lessons on how to be happy
Do you agree? How would you describe true happiness? Let’s talk!
Remember, always be sincerely you!