A few years ago, I sat down and carefully wrote out a list of goals. Things I wanted to have, things I wanted to do and the way I wanted my life to be.
They weren’t particularly lofty goals – mainly, I wanted a new car, a red one. I wanted to go to Hayman Island and I wanted to surround myself with positive people.
There is something magical about written goals. Maybe those things would happen anyway but you just wouldn’t notice because you didn’t have a checklist. But I believe we create our own lives by our thoughts and our attitudes.
At the time I wrote those goals, I was desperately looking for a way to achieve happiness and believed that this illusive feeling would come from some external source.
I was a busy Mum, running a business and feeling like life was slipping by. I had started to become a little bit invisible in a world where the focus is on young, happy and beautiful.
The opinions of others mattered very much, and I would always run everything through a prism of “what would they think” rather than prioritising my own happiness and valuing my own opinions and ideas.
When I thought about being happy it was always based on the idea that I would be happy when……I weighed less, when I had more money, when my house was decorated better. It was as if happiness was a feeling that I had to catch.
It wasn’t like I had an epiphany or a big light bulb moment. It was a gradual understanding that I could choose happy.
So I did.
It’s nice to live in Pollyanna world. It seems that happy attracts pleasure and grateful attracts abundance. Obviously, life still delivers its tests and challenges but it’s good to navigate with a compass built on happiness.
Seems overly simplistic. But life is simple. Have a compassionate heart and understanding that everyone is fighting their own internal battle. It’s a choice to not take offence, to have a thick skin and a soft heart. To not be needy. To fill yourself up by prioritising yourself in simple ways. Simple happinesses.
Wonder Blogger, Fat Mum Slim, is running a “Make Life Good” Challenge right now. I have been part of the Facebook Group she has set up. Simple achievable challenges that can be tracked and a big group of likeminded encouragers and uplifters celebrating small successes. Simple but powerful.
I did get my new red car, my trip to Hayman Island and the biggest gift of all has been to find myself surrounded by wonderful positive people.
I have also chosen to continually search for input that helps me to stay positive and happy. I listen to podcasts from Gretchen Rubin (author of The Happiness Project) and also Perth’s Kelly Exeter who both incorporate productivity advice to make life better.
Have you chosen to live happily?