Can you define what is the meaning of true happiness?
This has been a question I’ve wrestled with for so many years, and I’m still trying to figure it out.
Is it having a lot of money? A large social circle? Being mentality strong? Marrying the man/woman of your dreams? Or none of these? It’s a tough question for me because every time I feel like I’m heading in the right direction something always happens which makes me rethink things. The mistake I’ve been making is that I look at external factors to define happiness for me, and this turned out to be the main factor in why things didn’t align correctly. When you start to not look at external things to define your expectations, it’s only then you’ll be able to truly be in complete control.
Yesterday, I was with one of my good friends, and we got into a deep conversation about making improvements in our lives. I have a few things at the top of my list like cut down drinking, start budgeting my spending, and do one good deed each day that makes a change in another person’s life. However, when I mentioned that we’ll hold each other responsible for making sure we stay on track of our progress, he said something very insightful to me. He said,
“When you need to depend on others to truly make a change, then you are not serious about changing at all. Instead, you are finding excuses to why things didn’t work out if you fail” (blaming someone else)
When you first read his answer above, I know you may be thinking what an asshole because you’d expect good friends to be supportive…right? However, he makes complete sense to me, and I thank him for being so transparent. Here’s why…
First, you’re only going to make serious changes in your life when you are truly ready, and this is independent of how many other people will make changes with you. For example, you never hear successful people ever say that their hunger for success depends on others around them. Success comes from within yourself and your ability to do what it takes on your own to find the resources to get things done. It’s that simple!
Next, my friend made me question what’s top priority in my life because if I need others to kick me in my ass to make changes then how important are those changes in the first place? Think about it, I’m sure you’ll work out every day without anyone telling you to go to the gym, and I’m sure you eat every day without someone having to remind you…right? If you don’t, then I’ll tell you personally that I don’t need anyone to remind me at all.
Thanks to him, I’m able to reflect back on my life and really understand what I want to do, and what’s required to get things done. I’ll be able to make important, stronger changes, which will bring me closer to my end goals. Read My February 2017 Goals and Life Update to learn more.
I want all of you to take time out to think about what happiness means to you. Is it external or internal? Is it important enough where you’ll take whatever step(s) necessary to transform your life?
Living with bipolar disorder for many years has allowed me to understand a lot about myself. For example, much of what triggered my manic episodes came from external factors like not a strong social circle, quality of job and lifestyle. When I started to make changes internally on how to view situations and allow things to unfold the way they are supposed to, it really help control my mood swings.
But, the only way I manifested all of these changes was by first understanding what makes me happy, and what I can do to align myself internally to be in a place of positivity. This was something I wanted to do, and it didn’t depend on anyone else but me.
The next time someone asks me – How would you define happiness?
I’ll answer with confidence in the following way:
It’s when you don’t need external factors to feel important, loved, strong, and confident. It’s when you have the total control of your mental, physical and emotional well-being. Happiness is when you can live life the way you want and be positive no matter what’s happening around you.
How do you define happiness? Do you know what’s stopping you from truly being happy in life? Are you happy right now? What proactive steps are you taking to ensure your happiness?
feature photo credit: http://graphicspulp.com/quotes-about-being-happy/