Greetings my fellow spiritual seekers!
Our topic for today is:
So much has been said about happiness. Happiness is “where it’s at.” There are countless products and services that claim to be the cure for an unhappy state: nutritional supplements, Botox, positive thinking, meditation/mindfulness, dating sites, diets, to name just a few…
So, out of curiosity, do you remember where you first learned about happiness?
For me, I remember the concept being introduced at a young age in children’s books and Disney movies. Take The Cinderella story, for example. Here an innocent, orphan girl is forced to clean cinders by the fireplace and scrub the floors by evil stepsisters and a horrific stepmother! Oh my!
Eventually, by some serendipitous turn of events, which includes a magic Fairy Godmother, Cinderella ends up at the Royal Ball and finds herself dancing with none other than the illustrious Prince Charming! In a mad rush to make curfew, her shoe falls off and is left at the establishment. Mr. Charming finds the shoe and sets out to look for her.
He finally tracks her down, the shoe fits, and Voila! ALL of Cinderella’s problems are instantly solved! The final page/scene shows some version of them riding off into the sunset, alluding to something about them living “happily ever after.” All needs taken care of, no more worries or being “relegated-to-being-the-cleaning-servant” for Cinderella. Nirvana. Bliss. Perfection.
Perhaps you had similar fairy tales and stories poured into your mind at a young age? There are so many. Is anyone with me here? Do we really still think this is TRUE?
Are we kind-of in agreement that life just
ISN’T REALLY LIKE THAT?
Nowadays, we are in a kind of a subliminal, or perhaps obvious, competition with others on social media. Although I personally enjoy Facebook, I can see why some schools of thought say that it isn’t healthy for morale to constantly look at how perfectly “HAPPILY-EVER-AFTER” everyone else’s life can appear to be.
This is especially true during those times when we do not particularly enjoy how we ourselves are feeling.
Although it is wonderful to celebrate people’s victories, it is important to also be reminded that even the most “fortunate” of folks regularly go through “stuff.” Nobody, except perhaps some enlightened masters, is happy ALL OF THE TIME.
If you have children (or if you can imagine it), could you see yourself telling them that if they are not happy that you would have a real problem with that?
Good parenting includes teaching your child how to cope with less-than-optimal feelings in any situation and at any given time – and, ideally, that you help them to accept and love themselves no matter what.
Tony Robbins, Master Life Coach, says that the most successful people in life have learned how to master their “state.” That means, when they are in a state of NOT feeling positive and energized, they pro-actively use techniques like exercise, affirming self-talk, connecting with others, to bring themselves to a better “state”.
I find this to be extremely valuable advice, especially since it acknowledges the reality that we are naturally not-always-happy.
We CAN get to happiness, with a little attention and work.
The next time you are faced with a negative emotion, like fear, for instance, do your best not to fight with it. Do not berate yourself for not being in a state of bliss. That really only compounds the problem!
Try this process:
Take a deep breath.
Be in the present moment.
Do a little talking-to-yourself: “Okay, Self, it seems we are not liking this feeling that is happening here. Let’s take a look at what is going on.. is it truly a disaster? Is it just growing pains? Is there an opportunity for some healing here?”
And be PATIENT. Is there really THAT big of a rush to get back to being “happy?”
(And.. if so, WHY?)
Not being happy all the time is okay. It shows us that we are human. We are vulnerable. We are not perfect. The next time somebody, perhaps on Facebook, posts a picture of total happiness – just recognize that it’s a moment in time, and NOT a constant state.
Denying our real feelings and pretending to be happy when we are not delays our true opportunities for those precious, happy moments. For it is through processing and clearing away the negatives that happiness can emerge.
Let us make a way.
To schedule an appointment, and for more information,
Annette Dion is a gifted Spiritual Counselor, author, musician
and creative person!
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