“Being happy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect. It means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.”
The biggest factor that holds us back from being contented and cheerful is simply, and sadly, our own selves. We often limit ourselves from achieving our dreams, goals and aspirations either intentionally or unintentionally, more than anybody else. Meaning to say we are the main person who can make us happy… And to be happy, more than what we need to add to our life, we need to subtract from it. Think what will happen if you stop the controlling game, looking for approval from others and holding on to anger.
Will you become happier?!
So just go ahead and release yourself from all that don’t allow you to simply be happy!
Remember, we always have a choice, to embrace life or to hide from it; to enjoy life or to disgust it. Life would become so much easier and happier if we just could stop complicating it and letting go of self-limiting thoughts and actions.
But what do you need to let go to be happy?!
Approval of Others
We don’t need approval from others to know whether what we are doing is right or wrong. We are the best judge for our own life.
If you keep on thinking about what other people think and say about you, you will never live your life to the fullest.
Doing what other people expect from us, might make them like us, but will never make us happy. Eventually we will feel the disappointment of not following our goals and aspirations; we need to have courage to follow our passion!
“Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living the result of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other opinions drown your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” Steve jobs
Think how much more you would have achieved, if you had stopped listening to other people’s opinion about how you should live your life. It is good to consult with the experienced, but still we should take the final decision! They can just guide, but not to decide for us.
If you think engaging yourself in a certain profession or activity will bring you success and happiness, go ahead. Don’t let anyone discourage you from following your dreams.
Anger and Resentment
Anger and resentment not only make life bitter but also affect our health. Anger can eat us from inside.
“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” Lord Buddha
The cause of many physical ailments such as severe kidney problems, psychological and relationship problems is holding on to anger and resentment. We must let it go in order to be internally healed.
The key is to be able to forgive people who have hurt you internally, whether you forgive them externally as well is up to you. Internal forgiveness alleviates the pain that resonates within us.
In order to be happy, light and free, we need to forgive, forget and continue living.
Depending on Other People to Make You Happy
Happiness is an inside job. It is related to our character and attitude towards life. It is dependent on the size and activation of our Heart chakra.
So instead of waiting for others to make us happy, it’s better to take the responsibility of our own happiness.
“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” Dalai Lama
At the end of the day, the only person that we can count on, all the time, is us! A person, a relationship, a situation can make us happy, but temporarily. Unfortunately many people keep on changing their partner, job and friends looking for someone or something that can keep them happy!
This is not practical; it is not going to work permanently.
If we take the responsibility of keeping ourselves happy, we will not put our happiness in the hands of others, which will make us self-sufficient.
Stop meditating on the past! Past is the past; cut, let go and move on.
Continuously thinking about the past events and feeling sad, regretful and dissatisfied will not help; it just brings us unhappiness.
By meditating on the mistakes we have done in the past, we cannot change anything. In fact it will further attract the same kind of undesirable events into our current life!
Look at the past mistakes as lessons to learn and move on.
“Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next. Spend your energies on moving forward toward finding the answer.” Denis Waitley
Think about it. We are all human beings and we are all bound to make mistakes. The maturity you have gained today, is the result of all those mistakes and the effort to learn from them.
So be happy and stop living in the past to gain freedom to move forward!
If you don’t want to be criticized, stop criticizing!
You might be more experienced, more educated or more insightful, but it doesn’t mean you have the right to criticize. You don’t know the whole story. If you put yourself in the other person’s shoes maybe you won’t criticize them anymore!
Even if you think you are more matured than the person you are criticizing, since you have been where he is right now, you still don’t have the right to criticize. Think about it… What made you more mature?! Committing the same sort of mistakes?! Right? Does that mean you won’t commit any more mistakes? Just remember no one is perfect.
So it’s much better if we can all focus on our own things! If we all could think about our own life, rather than others, our lives would be a lot more meaningful.
“Our souls may lose their peace and even disturb other people’s, if we are always criticizing trivial actions – which often are not real defects at all, but we construe them wrongly through our ignorance of their motives.” Saint Teresa of Avila
Everyone is different. Everyone is evolving at his/her own pace. Let’s appreciate the differences instead of the shortcomings and be happy.
Most of the times the reason behind our unhappiness is an unexpected event. It can be a sudden change in our life, a break down, not getting what we think we should or not getting where we have planned to reach.
Managing our expectations can lead to happiness. If we let go of our unrealistic expectations, we will not get disappointed in life.
Some people think nothing in life will change. Unfortunately this is an unrealistic expectation. Our children one day will grow up, our relationships will change, our position, job or even social class can be changed in a blink of an eye! And if we are not prepared for it, we will suffer.
“He who would be serene and pure needs but one thing, detachment.” Meister Eckhart
The Law of Change is one of the key principles of Buddhism. That is why the ones practicing buddhism live in the moment and practice detachment! If we are de-attached from our possessions, result of our actions and our ideas, we will be free and happy.
Take note that detachment doesn’t mean to withdraw from life. It just simply means to live life fully but remain de-attached from its entanglements.
Sometimes we just need to let go and allow life to happen as it is meant to. We cannot control everyone and everything.
“Life is to be lived, not controlled; and humanity is won by continuing to play in face of certain defeat.” Ralph Ellison
We cannot afford stressing about things that are beyond our control. We cannot control people, even our own children, spouse and employees.
Everyone has the right to decide for his/her own.
Sometimes if you think your intervention is necessary to prevent a harmful event, it is ok to give your input and recommendations, but you still cannot force the person to do what you believe is right.
When we become too bossy, not only we make our life bitter and stressful rather than fun and joyful, but also we will loose our friends and family. No one wants to be controlled all the time! Even our employees need their freedom and our trust!
So it is better to relax and let things happen naturally. Be happy and embrace life with all its gifts and surprises!
Looking for Someone to Blame
No one wants to be at blame. Often we blame other people for our own problems. We blame our partner, our parents, our children, our employees, our neighbours, the traffic, the government and the world for our own mistakes, unhappiness and dissatisfactions.
It’s time to take responsibility for our failures and do something about the things that make us unhappy.
“People spend too much time finding other people to blame, too much energy finding excuses for not being what they are capable of being, and not enough energy putting themselves on the line, growing out of the past, and getting on with their lives.” J. Michael Straczynski
When things go wrong, it is not really the matter of finding someone to blame, but to find solutions! Problems happen in life. It’s better to do something about them rather than keep on complaining.
So next time when something goes wrong, think about the solutions and learn the lessons. This makes you smarter and more experienced to avoid the similar mistakes in the future. By avoiding the mistakes, your life will get better that will make you happier.
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