To live a happy life....

Many of us have been brainwashed into believing society’s definition of success: lots of money, a high-powered job, a picture-perfect family, a big extravagant home and a beautiful body. All too often, when we don’t have them all, we are left feeling dissatisfied, restless and sad. The reason behind these feelings is lack of self love and self worth. We usually form the opinion about ourselves on what others think of us and this is where all our problems arise. Here are four ways to live a tension free life.


We are all unique beings


All of us can’t squeeze ourselves into one same mould, and we shouldn’t want to. No one else is more important, worthy, or special than us. Just because someone is richer, more famous, or more attractive - does not make them more valuable than we are. Do not treat your own physical, emotional, and spiritual health as an afterthought. Make your own well-being a priority. We deserve all the bounty this world has to offer and we are definitely worth it. The sooner we start loving ourselves, the faster all of our other relationships will be filled with fun, closeness, love and happiness. When we start noticing the wonderful things about ourselves, other people will have no choice but to see them too.


We meet the people we need


Have you ever noticed that whether it is in our immediate circle of friends, at work or just life’s everyday events we tend to find ourselves attracting the same types of people into our lives? If we take a step back and really look at these people we will often see a similarity between them and one of our nuclear or extended family members. Those people are needed to help us, to hurt us, to leave us, to love us and to make us into the person we are meant to be. There’s a famous saying by Khalil Gibran, ‘I have learnt silence from the talkative, tolerance from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet strange, I am ungrateful to these teachers’.


Do away with all the old, negative messages you were given about yourself. If someone has told you that you are worthless, undeserving, dense or unattractive, that is their problem. People hurt others when they are hurt themselves and they are mostly just dealing with themselves. It has nothing to do with us.


Forgive yourself


Some of us have to learn the hard way. There are really no failures or mistakes, just opportunities for growth. Usually something good does come out of our mistakes. So learn from them, don’t repeat them, forgive yourself, and move on. If you’ve hurt someone else in the process of learning your life lessons, make it right. Reach out to them, and tell them you are sorry or just start being nice in general. We are accountable for our behaviour so we should own up to it.


No pain, no gain


Life is full of ups and downs. Even though they are more difficult, we learn more during the challenging times. We might not see the value of it; but later, when we look back, we will reach the realisation that we have learned a great deal. Know that nothing we experience is an accident. Everything we experience and everyone we meet teaches us something or holds a lesson for us. Eventually we will see that sometimes we have to lose something to gain something else. Even illness, death, and financial loss have a purpose. Keep faith, for faith is - knowing that everything will work out. We only grow stronger from our experiences.


Always remember that we need to define our own reality and create the life that will make us happy. This is our life, so we should be the ones creating our own standards of success.

Published on 21 September 2010, You mag, The News

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