What Does “Happiness” Mean to You?
For the average person who has never known suicidal thoughts or depression happy is just what they are. An ok feeling about life. They may be caught up in the rat-race, the conditioning of true happiness happens on weekends and in retirement, but on the whole they are ok. Until they are not. The suicide rates in Australia suggest more people are not able to cope with the every day.
Ten years ago I came within minutes of taking my own life. Then I heard a voice. It told me I was in a prison of my own making and if I changed my thoughts, I could change my life. I have never taken anti-depressants as I am allergic to many medications. I did go and speak to a counsellor as I spiralled down, I was looking for help and answers, but it did not help. The voice in my head did get my attention. Since that moment I have been being
studying, learning and growing in the science and art of how our thoughts control our lives.
It probably took about 6 months before I was out of the woods of suicidal thoughts. It took another year to replace spiralling down thoughts with spiralling up on a regular basis. These days, I can barely remember what depression and suicidal thoughts felt like. I am happy, content, joyful through-out my days
This is not about straight positive thinking and burying your head in the sand. It is about real, structural change to your brain so you can let go of the past, be aware, present and grateful now and know that whatever happens in the future you will be able to deal with it.
I am not happy and positive because of my circumstances either. I am separated from my husband, I am on unemployment benefits and at 55 years of age I am learning how to run a coaching business on-line as I live on 300 acres by myself in the middle of nowhere. So circumstances are not why I am happy, but they are not bringing me down either.
So why am I happy. I choose to live here. It is peaceful, calm and beautiful. Everyday there is work, hard physical work to be done. Clearing a patch of weeds or mowing around the house gives me a sense of accomplishment. I am grateful for every birdsong, sunrise, sunset, new vegetable growing and my pets playing. Morning and evening I take time to sit outside and be present to all I have. I am happy when I am drawing, fulfilling the creative urge in me. When I am writing blogs and coaching and mentoring people I feel good because helping others is an important part of who I am.
I have learnt to be me. My days are computer games, drawing, gardening, reading, writing, learning and growing, and pushing my boundaries. I don’t tend to do it Tony Robbins style. Massive action and huge change all at once is not my style. Small, everyday, consistent steps have brought me to this place of happiness within me, and that is enough.
So in myself I am happy. I am also a tad angry as well. We see the newspaper headlines of another famous person, or even not so famous taking their own lives. And I think, it doesn’t have to be this way. There is a way for us all to have thoughts that spiral us up and not down. There is a way for us to Be in this world which is happy and joyful and worth living for. My desire is for everyone to understand it is their right and also their responsibility to be truly happy.
Please leave a comment and let me know what “happiness” means to you.
Love and Light