Can You Really Choose To Be Happy?
Posted on 30th November 2017 at 14:10
There really is a secret to being happy every-day and I want to gift it to you today.
In all honesty, I have struggled to write this post. Every time I try I feel as if I am writing in clichés but I am here to tell you that it is true; there really is a secret to being happy every-day and I want to gift it to you today.
I know from personal experience how happiness can seem like an abstract concept, believe me, I spent many years searching for it but I only seemed to attract more misery. Luckily though, with the help and support of amazing people, I discovered that the secret to happiness was ridiculously simple and this breakthrough was a complete game changer.
Of course you can skip this blog post where I open my heart with you and share my personal journey, instead go straight ahead and discover how you can create a happier you.
My childhood was sometimes frightening. My step-dad was an alcoholic and although there were happy moments peppered throughout my young life, I could never 100% relax, I never knew what was coming next. I spent every single day walking on eggshells so it’s no surprise that I became a painfully shy child in a constant state of anxiety.
I took the first opportunity to leave and at 18, I packed my precious possessions and my student cook book and headed for the bright lights of Liverpool. It was the early 90’s, the city was electric and I made life-long friends. We had our whole lives ahead of us, perhaps I thought, I had finally found happiness?
The problem with depending on others for happiness is your bliss is constantly hanging on a thread. In my early 20’s I found myself embroiled in an emotionally abusive relationship. I was still with this man when I found out that my biological dad had died of a heart attack. No signs, no symptoms, no rhyme, no reason. There one day, gone the next. My world turned upside down.
The abusive relationship intensified and culminated in my partner raping me.
I was 25 and completely lost. I did not know how to put one foot in front of the other, never mind where I would go if I managed it.
This was not happiness.
One day I did it and walked straight into a counsellor’s office; this was the day that set my life on a different path, one where I discovered the secret to a world where happiness is the norm.
Now before this, I had been a total sceptic; I had thought that any therapy was a load of utter bunkum, complete codswallop but I was in such a dark place I was willing to try anything.
I ended up seeing Eamonn, a hypnotherapist and therapist and we are still friends today. He taught me so many things over the years but one of the most important lessons was that happiness isn’t a Christmas present; you don’t get it gifted to you, nicely packaged with a big red bow.
Let me tell you the problem with the way we have all been taught to think about happiness; we expect someone or something to make our lives fulfilled but it is actually down to something incredibly simple; our own choice.
The more aware you can be of your thoughts, feelings, reactions and responses, the more you recognise your power to choose. Even when you find yourself in a situation where you feel like you don’t have a choice, you absolutely do and understanding this will revolutionise your life.
This knowledge changed my life to such an extent that I built my entire life around helping others to learn it too. You can make this choice every single day too.
This is happiness.
Since becoming a fully accredited hypnotherapist and mindfulness practitioner myself I have helped hundreds of people find and keep their happiness. What I have recognised is that regardless of who we are and how unique we think our struggles are there are common problems we all experience. I want to use this opportunity right now to address a few of these and help you to see that your happiness is your choice.
You Can Choose Good Relationships
It is one thing to accept that you can choose happiness but what if the people around you don’t? When someone close to you exists in a negative space then it’s hard not to be pulled down with them.
The next time this is happening to you, remember that everyone is just doing their best. Given wherever they have come from, whatever they have experienced, they are absolutely every single day, doing the very best that they can do. Personally, I struggled with that concept. I could not conceive, in any way, shape, or form, how the grownups from my childhood had ever done their best; particularly my step-dad.
Then one random day as I was driving along, I had one of those thoughts that pops into your head, one of those realisation-revolutionary thoughts:
My step-dad was just a bloke.
He was just a bloke who couldn’t cope with the demons that were in his mind and so he found his solace at the bottom of a bottle. He was absolutely doing his best, it may not have been good enough for me, but it was still his best.
This was the most liberating thought I have ever had. It allowed me to let go of so much rubbish from my childhood. That man used to have so much power over me but from that day forward I chose to take my power back.
Knowing this (and I mean REALLY knowing it) can enrich the relationships with those you love and allow you to let go of those who no longer serve you. It is a beautifully healing process!
You Can Choose Better Finances
Money makes the world go around right? So what happens when you don’t have enough? How can you be happy when you are struggling to put food on the table? I know it’s not easy, I’ve been there. When this fear wakes you up in the middle of the night the anxiety is tangible, it sits on your chest and suffocates you.
The problem is that when we are so focused on the lack of money we panic. We are concentrating so hard on the problem that we don’t see the solution. We feel trapped but it is an illusion, it is just a thought that leads to a feeling, nothing more. There is always a way out but when you live with the demon of fear, you just can’t see it.
Being aware and recognising your power of choice is always the first step out of this hole. A clear, calm and happy mind is able to make better decisions and is more inspired with ideas to attract wealth.
You Can Choose to Look AND Feel Good
It’s hard to feel good about yourself when the media is constantly telling you that you’re not good enough. I can’t tell you how many diets I used to go on and looking back I don’t think I ever needed to. The problem was I never felt good enough and the mistake I made was thinking that my own self-worth was connected to what I looked like.
I haven’t been on a ‘diet’ for years. Learning to love myself and make my own happiness a priority enabled me to treat my body better. Self-care is more than just a day trip to the spa; it is treating your body and soul with the respect it deserves. I no longer eat to protect myself, to build walls and keep the world at a distance. I know that working daily on my own happiness makes me feel good which helps me make better life style choices.
I have seen people get to their desired weight with the ‘happiness diet’ and not through hardship and misery but by simply loving themselves. You have the choice to do this too.
The Truth About Happiness
We all know what it feels like to be happy but sometimes it can feel as if it is some elusive concept that slips out of our grasp as quickly as we find it. Regardless of what our individual problem is, the same applies:
The only way to keep happiness is to make it a choice each morning.
This is why I developed my Happiness Club where I can connect and support my members Every. Single. Day.
Here are what some of my current members are already right now…
“If everyone was a member of this club, the world would be a happier place.”
“Jo puts life back into perspective.”
“I love The Happiness Club! It gives me something different to consider and focus on each day in order to help me lead a more fulfilled life. It highlights the areas I have made improvements on so I can give myself a pat on the back.”
But I am not asking you to join, (although you can right now if you feel impulsive), today I want to give you the opportunity to see that when you turn your attention to happiness every day, you will enrich your life, your relationships, your finances and your self-worth.
The world is a truly magnificent and beautiful place… you just have to decide that you want to see it this way. Make a choice and take the first step today by learning more about The Happiness Club.
This is happiness.
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