How many times have you set conditions on your happiness?
I used to be conditionally happy – I’ll only be happy if I lose a bit of weight, or I’ll only be happy once my house is organized, or I’ll only be happy once I get rid of all this stuff, or even I’ll only be happy if I have this kind of name brand stuff in my closet or house.
The thing that I finally figured out about living in a conditionally happy state is that it sets a default position of not being happy unless those conditions are met. So all of your self talk leads to you believing that the ONLY way to “get” happiness is if the conditions ring true or are achieved.
When I was living in a state of being conditionally happy, I wasn’t happy with anything! I wasn’t happy with my beautiful belongings, I wasn’t happy with my beautiful clothing or shoes, I wasn’t happy with my cushy high paying job, I wasn’t happy with my huge home, I wasn’t even happy with my wonderful husband! I was only happy when these absurd and arbitrary conditions were met.
This conditionally happy state prevented me from truly living! I wasn’t enjoying the small things – how could I? My mind wasn’t satisfied with my conditional happy meter!
It was a very slow battle against this conditional thinking – and at the time, I couldn’t even pin point it happening or changing, but it was indeed changing. It changed as I focused more on my own self. I let myself do only SOME things, just for ME! – I mean as a mom and wife and homeowner I have to give me out first right? Or so I once believed!
The more I was able to enjoy some personal time, the more I realized that I was lucky to have all that I do have. It really is true:
Gratitude is the gateway to happiness
I am always very careful to say to the kids that things are not always fair in life – it’s easy to say it to kids who are literally fighting over which kid gets the blue sucker instead of the green sucker – I mean, come on! These are not world problems right! Of course it’s not fair, but they are getting a treat regardless!
They are getting a treat regardless!! They are still getting a reward, even though they are not happy with it. If they were simply thankful for getting a treat they could have started enjoying the treat like 25 minutes ago!!! Which means, if they had just said “thanks mom, you’re the best mom ever!” (too much? oh well!) they could have saved their energy whining, and being frustrated, even stubbornly mad. They could have simply chosen to be happy with what they have and could have enjoyed the reward way sooner!
There is actually a HUGE life lesson in there. We can get frustrated that we can’t get what it is we really want and pout or rebel as we wait and hope for the day we can have it, or we can choose to enjoy what we already have today!
My house is not perfect, even after all of my hours of really hard work both mentally and physically. Literal blood, sweat and tears have gone into this house, and it still isn’t how I want it yet. But, it’s also a pretty awesome house. Everyone gets their own room. My husband has an office, I have an epic crafting space! There is so much to be thankful for as I really look around. It’s not about what I don’t have yet, or what I desperately want now, it’s about where we are right now!
We are caught up in this buyers market when it comes to everything that we forget to stop and look around. We forget to take a moment and say, “look at what we have”, or “look at what we’ve created!”
My Home Under Clutter blog has really helped me add some perspective to all of my hard work, and all of my trials and errors! It has really made me stop and recognize the hard work I have done and continue to do. Seeing life in pictures is also great for that. I am so thankful for all of you reading my posts!
Time really does go by so fast! Why not stop and enjoy it – even the bad parts!! The bad parts make the good parts that much sweeter!
As I close up my laptop from my work, I sit and look out at my yard, and can’t help but feel true unconditional happiness!