What is happiness?

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

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“Sick and tired of being sick and tired makes me tired and sick from worrying about being sick and tired”

It’s fulfilling prophecy. We feel bad about feeling bad. We feel guilty for feeling bad. We realise we are letting ourselves be the victim and then feel angry about being so self-absorbed.

So allow yourself to feel bad. Don’t pile on more weight by hating yourself for the way you feel. Learn to let that go and focus on what you can change.

Our crisis is no longer material; it’s existential. We don’t know where we fit and we feel we have no purpose. Having no purpose makes it hard to know what you really care about and when you don’t understand what you care about, what you really really care about, then you inevitably loose focus and feel lost.

In our desperation, we attach ourselves to anything and anyone that will have us and discover the other million ways that we have not fit the mould or made the measure. All we want is to be happy!

But what is happiness? And why do we think we so justly deserve it when it’s so blatantly obvious that part of life is pain. Finding happiness can quickly become an addiction; one that we chase over and over again and becoming increasingly aware that we don’t have it which ultimately makes our pursuit of happiness into a negative, vicious experience that we feel we have failed at.

The more you want to be recognised.. the more you want to be normal… the more that you want to feel worthy, the more you feel small, abnormal and worthless as this becomes your only focus.

Eating disorders often stem from a girls need or want to  be prettier, thinner, sexier. The more this girl zones into what she imagines herself to lack, the more ugly she comes to see herself.

“You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never (truly) live if you are looking for the meaning of life”

Failures in life are what make you an interesting person. Failures in business are what lead to a better understanding of what is needed to be successful in the next venture. Allowing yourself to be open and vulnerable paradoxically makes you more confident and liked by others. The misery your depression, anxiety or fear bring you, also provides the greatest insight and growth you will achieve in your life.

Sometimes in life, you just have to hold on and be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Trying to avoid this matter-of-fact is what ultimately destroys us. The more we hide away from life and the world and escape the hardship we face, the more we are delaying the inevitable and suddenly we find ourselves waking up one morning full of dread and anxiety about the day ahead of us. The only way to overcome pain is to first learn how to bear it.

“The denial of failure is a failure. “ Feeling ashamed about being ashamed is shameful.

Stepping out of this cycle is to accept the challenges that lay ahead and take action.

Many of us have probably heard someone, a teacher or motivational speaker reference your energy and time as money in the bank. It’s a finite resource which we must learn to spend carefully. If you have £100 in the bank and you spend it on one nice meal only to find you starve the rest of the week.. well, you’ve got no one to blame but yourself.

As you can probably conclude, this is not a new concept. However, the way it has been presented and explained in the past means that all too often it falls on deaf ears. Whomever is dishing out the advice does it under the assumption that we know what we value, that we understand our purpose and now we just need to focus. From my own experience, most of us fail at the start because we just don’t know who we are yet. If we don’t know who we are, we don’t know what direction we need to be heading so we drive around a circles and wonder why we haven’t gotten anywhere.

Learning about yourself is incredibly hard. We were never taught this growing up and we certainly weren’t encouraged to do so as we grew older. It’s the kind of lesson that transcends beyond your business, further than your day to day and forces you to come to terms with something many of us never do. Learning to accept yourself. Ideally, mastering the art of loving who you are.

Celebrating the success we do achieve, reflecting on the failures in order to learn from them and having an intrinsic knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses is one of the most powerful tools you can access.

When you are able to fully comprehend what you find important and the values and passion that support it, the struggle you battle through to defend those values suddenly is completely worthwhile.

You cannot always avoid the pain, hurt, depression, panic and loneliness but you can find a purpose, a passion to follow, that makes the shit time more endurable. If we cannot discover meaning in our life then we will attach our ego to the most trivial of things and find our bank of energy and time is out of credit.

Learn to attach your ego to only the things that deserve it.

When we put our hard work, ideas and plans out into the world and regardless of how amazing our product, service or personality is – it’s a really scary process and we will not always receive the kind of response we might be expecting.

But instead of looking at how we can push that fear aside or hide it way – I want to try and empower us to embrace the worries, insecurities and doubt and learn how to use that energy for positive results.

 

 

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