I was talking to one of my students about the power of happiness, and our ability to create a happy life just by believing it is so.
Recently we watched a TED talk on the science of happiness given by Dan Gilbert about how getting exactly what we want does not mean we will be happy, and the reverse is also true, that having something horrible happen does not mean we end up unhappy. Our ‘psychological immune system‘ is a loophole in our brains, that let us feel happiness even when things go array. This artificial happiness that we synthesis gives us the ability to create the feeling of being content in all situations. Yup this is huge!
When I saw this talk for the first time it made me realize that my life was not just a synthesised version of happiness, a life seen through rose coloured glasses like I had thought, but that further, making happiness happen was a skill that I had develop and gotten better at over time. And by knowing that we can do this little hat trick, we can make the most of whatever life throws at us, and feel happy no matter what! Just like a choice.
Of course, when you focus on the things that are going your way, and are grateful for them, the power of the universe and the law of attraction comes into play. Your thoughts, either negative or positive can shape your entire world. That is the basic notion of ‘The Secret’ by Rhonda Byrne. By letting your inner voice tell you happy thoughts and having your inner montra tell you how good your doing, you are in fact moulding and constructing a happy life. Her book is based on William Walker Atkinson (1906) greater works of more than 100 books that focus on strengthening willpower, improving focus and developing magnetism that attracts good things into life.
Further, we all know people who are constantly putting other people down, trying to make themselves feel better at the expense of others. Also there are those who put themselves down, telling themselves over and again that they do not think they can handle something, or that there is someone better for the job. By telling yourself these things, you are creating the outcomes for these situations even before they happen. These negative thoughts will affect your ability to create your own happiness, in turn you will manifest unhappiness.
Some people seem to be stuck on a loop, a holding pattern of negativity, pessimism, untrusting thoughts generated by something that they cannot get past. I know many who are still talking about a significant other who broke their heart and ruined their life, a business partner who screwed them over, or a stressful situation that they relive over and again in their brains even though it was so many years ago. They should have been able to reconstruct their lives by now. Furthermore, some countries cannot get past wars or treaties that happened 100 years ago, and they feel that their people were treated unjustly and cannot get past it. This stops a whole nation from moving forward and growing as entity; by constantly stirring the pot, the burnt bottom keeps coming up. However, there is an answer for the pessimists amongst us, and even a cure for their ailment.
In the morning, you can decide how your day is going to go. Slap on a smile and move towards your moments; feel them, live them, enjoy them, and at the end of each day, after taking careful note of all the good things, you will actually feel happy. It can be an overnight change, to change your automatic montra, even in the pouring rain, or when you get that bad news, you have already decided that you can handle it; like superman in his bullet proof cape, you walk through your day with a layer of love protecting you from all those obstructive thoughts. Even on tough days you can enjoy a moment of light breaking through those storm clouds. By thinking about the baby you saw on the bus that was playing with his feet, or even how your daughter makes you a cup of coffee and brings it to you when you are typing away on your computer for a blog; those moments can change your thinking enough to change your life! They are the moments that shift our perceptions towards the goodness all around us, attracting more positivity. You offer your soul the nutrients it needs to stay ‘thought healthy’.
I know it sounds too easy, too good to be true but after a while thinking about all the gifts each day brings, and actually being grateful for them; it ends up being your normal to live above the bad weather, seeing the silver lining on every grey cloud, and to take that colleague that truly dislikes you with a grain of salt. By viewing them as not knowing what they are missing out on, reinforces what you already know; that you deserve respect and love and you have value no matter what others may think! You can take away their power over you in one single positive thought. Like magic!
Like I said, even those who challenge us the most teach us many different things about ourselves that make us grow in different directions. Through these challenges we actually learn to see people as basically good, (forgive them because they do not know what they do) so instead of digging in your heals and fighting your way towards your goals, let the universe take care of you, and bring you seamlessly to the next level of development. You have to trust that it will happen, and to give it up to the powers that are. Some call this god, yet coming from me who is truly an atheist, I like to think that we are all connected through some sort of thought processes, elements that leave us and connect us; an invisible network of thought wrapping clear across the world.
I learned something profound from ‘The Science of Happiness’, that our decisions, no matter the path, somehow the universe takes us to exactly where we need to be. As the proverb says, It has already been written. So why fight it? Our decisions this way or that way in the grand scheme of our lives, are so very close together, that we always seem to find our way back to our destiny. All roads lead to happiness.