I had an epiphany recently that may be common knowledge to those of you reading this but, honestly, I just “got it.”
For as long as I can remember, I have held on to what I now know is an unrealistic expectation of happiness. I am not sure where or when it attached itself to my psyche but it was there, and definitely influencing the level of peace and joy in my day to day life.
Am I the only one who expected to get up thrilled to meet each new day, looking forward to the wonders of a brand new experience on earth, smiling from ear to ear and humming to myself? As I’ve mentioned in past articles, I do a lot of inspirational reading and striving toward my positive evolution as a person. Unfortunately, it was not until I was exposed to numerous common messages, in many books and presentations, that the proverbial light bulb went off.
I recently read, “Dying to Be Me” by Anita Moorjani, and realized it doesn’t have to be so hard …. life that is. Following a Near Death Experience/NDE, Anita writes in a clear, concise and caring way about the undue burden’s we human’s put on ourselves each and everyday. The perspective she gained from her experience gave me renewed perspective as well. We are here to live happy, be kind and supportive to each other (including ourselves), and no one is putting expectations on us except … us. We only really need to be who we are and to allow our lives to unfold. Yes, there are some unavoidable life obligations such as earning enough money to live, but, ultimately, we decide the course for the rest of our lives.
I learned that “happiness” is not some euphoric nirvana that “should” be greeting us every morning. The joy and happiness we seek is like the stepping - stones we use to cross a stream. Our over-all feeling of joy comes from the stringing together of “happy” moments in our lives. The warmth you feel in your heart, and the smile on your face, that comes from the hummingbird you see in your garden while you drink your first cup of coffee in the morning. The warm cup of coffee itself, seeing your dog’s enthusiastic greeting and the way he is totally in the present with his tail wagging and butt swinging. It’s the good feeling you get from helping someone open a door when their hands are full, the call from a friend you haven’t talked to in a while…just to say hello. Your children saying thank you, and they love you, for something nice that you did for them. The early morning run in the ocean mist as you absorb the soothing smells, feel the mist on your face and hear the sounds of nature as your eyes take in the beautiful ocean view. The amazing shade of pink caught in a flower.
It is all the things that we feel in a fleeting way, but sometimes do not really absorb as much as we can. Taking the time to write down all the “nice events” of our days and looking over the list at the end of the day can be a pleasant gift we give to ourselves. We often are drawn to what was not what we wanted during our day, instead of what was exactly as we needed it to be.
Like any inspirational message, you come away saying, “wow, that is so simple but somehow I missed it”. Don’t miss the good things in your life that are the source of your joy. Those moments that, pulled together, make up the “feel good” day you actually did have. Consider turning your attention slightly to the left of where you are looking and you may be surprised.
Wishing you stepping - stones that make you smile everyday and the ability to cross a wide stream throughout the weeks, months and years of your life.