Let me start by mentioning I am no expert in the art of happiness. If anything, right now, I am on a journey with the guidance of God to restore my joy. Understand that joy and happiness hold two different meanings. Happiness is based on external things like our environment, situations, and people. It’s like we connect happiness to a thought, person, or event. “If I get this this job I will be so happy!” “When I make X amount of money I wouldn’t worry about anything.” “I am just waiting on the right person and then I will be complete.” Stop, think, reflect, and count your blessings. Joy is internal. When you have joy it’s like you are always at peace with who you are, where you are, and what you are doing (but we will talk about joy another day 🙂 ).
“Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate. So practice happy thinking every day. Cultivate the merry heart, develop the happiness habit, and life will become a continual feast.” –Norman Vincent Peale
It is imperative that we protect our happiness with healthy practices everyday. We must be mindful of who and what we allow to control our practices towards a happier and joyful life. Keep in mind we are in charge of our practices of happiness and we are constantly challenged to give up. How will you protect yourself?
Here are four common practices can harm our happiness:
We as humans emotionally compare ourselves to others. Whether it is personal appearance, income, career, or material things, comparing ourselves to others is a dangerous practice that can lead to self-destruction. This practice brings loads of unhappiness and causes us to lose sight of what we are blessed with. Do not lose sight of your success. This is a challenging practice to combat, but you can become mindful of your success. Focus and have faith!
Being a worry-wart. “Worrying is like a rocking a chair; it gives you something to do but it gets you nowhere.” This happens to be one of my favorite quotes. For those who do not know me well I should tell you that I used to be a serious worry-wart. All of the anxiety and uncertainty that was stored within me began to paralyze my confidence. Worrying can come from holding on from something that has hurt or defeated us in the past. Let it go. Please. It is not worth the stress and liquidation of your happiness. Allow life to unfold as planned and most importantly trust the process.
Welcoming unwelcoming thoughts. We are all brilliant in our own special way because we are humans. We have the brainpower to host such amazing ideas and solve difficult problems while balancing everyday challenges. Ultimately, we pretty much have this whole “life” thing down pact! But in the same breath we are the biggest overthinkers, which leads towards negative thoughts. Always keep in mind that you are not all of your thoughts.
Abandoning our passions. Never neglect your passions. Do what you love. It’s your purpose and gift. Often times we brush aside our passions due to work, family, bills, and other clouds that block our purpose. Our daily responsibilities of life can disrupt our vision leaving the feeling of defeat and hopelessness. However, there is a bright side. Believe it or not, we can live out our passion in our everyday life. Whether it is mentoring, teaching, or even blogging, try to find a way to incorporate in your everyday life. Regardless if it comes with a paycheck or not, we owe it to ourselves to try and follow our passion. Money can not and will not buy your happiness.
Protect yourself. Love yourself. Until next time. Xo