Happiness seems to be this elusive state of being that we're all chasing after daily. We want to be happy and try to put things in our lives that will make us happy. Is it the job, the house, or the spouse that will bring joy? Why do we feel happy and relaxed on vacation without the pressures of daily life?
I've been looking, hoping and searching for the answer my entire life. I've chased some dreams and changed others to adapt to my situation. That's the reality of life, I guess. We pursue dreams and compromise others. After spending years trying to manufacture a life that others approved of, I decided to let all that go and listen to my heart.
When I look to the people I admire most and consider happy, they have a few things in common. They are successful in business, and they are positive, loving, gracious and generous people. I believe the first stems from the latter. My mentor, Rhonda Shasteen, always taught me to be true to myself. Ever since she first told me that, I've been on a mission to discover what it means for me.
In Lead with LUV by Ken Blanchard and Colleen Barrett, co-founder of Southwest Airlines, Ken comments on the sign on by Colleen's door that says " I can only please one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow doesn't look good either." Colleen knows you have to take care of yourself first to be able to be good for those around you. You must look into your heart to find happiness. It lives and grows from within you.
So after all this time I've been trying to live a life that would please my parents or anyone else I may come into contact with, I'm only now discovering that I have to be happy with myself first to be happy and enable myself to do great things. Living for others approval is perpetually un-fulfilling. This is an exciting journey I'm excited to begin, and I'm feeling more alive than ever.
Thus far I've discovered that the best part about listening to the joy and happiness within you is that it acts as a compass to take you where you need to be in order to accomplish you purpose in life. Your purpose will reveal itself if you listen to the nudge within you. When you follow that guide and are fulfilling your purpose, the happiness continues to grow. This doesn't mean you won't have a bad day, or that you won't have to face fear and uncertainty. You can, however, learn to take those things in stride, and let them roll off your back in order to make room for the joy living in your heart.
This long-overdue realization has had the most profound impact on my outlook on life. I believe anything is possible now, not because something supernatural is going to come in and take over, but because I'm learning to tap into a joy that is so big that it will help me progress beyond this moment and onto something greater than myself.
It is my sincere desire that I can stay focused on this journey and not succumb to discouragement. I hope you can find your happiness too because you can!