It’s that time of year again. People are making (and breaking) resolutions. Everywhere we look, we are told that we should resolve to lose weight or exercise more. That if we become fit and trim, we will magically become happy.
Personally speaking, losing weight and exercising have never caused me to become happy. Hungry, sore, and downright bitchy, absolutely but never truly happy. In fact, when I look back, I remember such resolutions being more about punishing myself because I wasn’t a twenty year old supermodel.
Yet, on the other hand, I have noticed that when I am happy I am naturally more active and I do make better nutritional choices. I think, this is mostly because when I feel happy, I don’t need to eat for comfort. Then, without the energy sapping sugars and caffeine in my diet, I automatically feel more energetic and adventurous. What’s more, since there’s no pressure to keep to a specific strict routine, I don’t feel trapped, limited, or denied.
So, this year, I think we should all resolve to just be happy. Forget the fad diets. Don’t waste money on a gym membership that you’ll never use. Instead, just resolve to be happy.
Sounds great. But now what? There’s no specially priced product or celebrity endorsed exercise program for happy. Where do we even start?
No, actually the secret to happy is really quite simple. Be your own best friend. Learn about who you are and what you really want from life. Be your own cheerleader to reach your goals and fulfill your dreams. Then, when things get difficult or times become challenging, be that person who is loving and compassionate. Be that person who will say yes feel your emotions fully, accept reality (the truth of a given situation), and then get ready to kick butt once again.
I think as a whole, we have all become a little lost. We’ve forgotten that things and particular sets of experiences were never meant to make us happy. They were meant to make our lives easier. They were even meant to provide a feeling of comfort but they were never meant to make us happy.
What’s worse, is that we’ve become so used to believing that these things and particular sets of experiences will make us happy that we no longer question when the media tells us how we need to be. We replace self-knowing with self-loathing. Then, we ignore those little urgings that tell us what we really want out of life. Is it any wonder why the world is so angry, so lonely, and so very disconnected?
So, this year, be just a little bit kinder to yourself. Stop berating yourself for what you aren’t, what you don’t have, and what happened in the past. Instead, look around for the things that do work in your life and that do make you happy. Start there and you may be surprised to see that the life you have might not be so terribly bad after all.