I have always been a firm believer in the power our thoughts possess. I believe that our thoughts very much control our feelings. I also believe that we have total control of our own thoughts. Therefore, we ultimately have the ability to control our own feelings by controlling our own thoughts.
If you depend on outside circumstances to determine your happiness, you will always be subjected to feeling up and down as the circumstances around you constantly change. If your happiness depends on another person loving you back and that doesn’t happen then your happiness goes away. If you happiness depends on a certain job or title and then you lose that title then your happiness goes away. Anytime you allow your happiness to be driven from the outside in, it will never be consistent or sustainable.
On the other hand, if you happiness is driven from within, going from the inside out, well then it is a completely different story. You then have the ability to keep it consistent and sustained because you control what is within your head which controls what’s in your heart. So grateful thoughts equal a happy heart!
Yes, the key to being happy is to think about all that you have to be grateful for in your life. Every single one of us has something to be grateful for. If you can read this blog, be grateful for your eyes that can see the world around you. If you can hear, be grateful you can hear words and music and laughter. If you can walk, be grateful for your legs that allow you to run and dance. If you have friends, be grateful for each one. If you believe in God, be grateful that He loves you unconditionally. If you have family, be grateful that you are not alone in this world. All of us have something to be grateful for. If you aren’t sure how much you have to be grateful for in your life I will tell you to try something that a friend once suggested that I do at a time in my life in my 20’s when I felt like my world was falling apart. My marriage was ending, I was burdened with being the sole support of my two children and scared to death to do that alone, I was moving to a new area where I knew no one, I was struggling with my own self-worth and I felt that happiness was nowhere to be found. A dear friend suggested that I go home and kneel down in the middle of a room where there was no furniture to lean against. Then my friend said I was to say a prayer out loud to my Heavenly Father, but in this prayer I was to ask for nothing from Him. I was to simply start thanking him out loud for every single little think I could possibly come up with that was good in my life. I was to pray as long as it took until I could literally think of nothing else good in my life. This friend pointed out that I should thank Him for my health, the grass, the flowers, a car…you name it I was to remember to thank Him for it. I didn’t see how this prayer was going to make anything better in my life – it wouldn’t change my circumstances that were causing me to be unhappy, but I figured “what the heck, it couldn’t make things worse”, and so I went home and tried it. About 15 minutes into my prayer I broke down crying, not tears of sadness, just the opposite, they were tears of joy. I was absolutely overwhelmed at how blessed my life truly was and how much I had to be grateful for. When I finally got up from my prayer my entire perspective had changed. I stood up from that prayer feeling unbelievably blessed and amazingly happy. I couldn’t believe how happy I felt inside and how grateful I was for all that I had. That prayer changed my life. And now whenever things in my life start to feel sad or depressed I get down on my knees and begin my prayer of thanks for all that I have. And each time I do the miracle of happiness returns to my life.
Have a HAPPY start to a blessed week!
(opening quote by Marcus Aurelius)