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Posted in Personal Growth
June 17, 2018

How To Control Your Own Happiness

Hey!
I don’t know about you but these past few weeks have been a bit of a roller coaster for me. I can’t really explain why, it tends to happen every June.
 
Maybe it’s a combination of my birthday, the official start of summer, and the Summer Solstice (which usually has some crazy moon energy going on at the same time).  Most people look at their birthday as a time for celebration, I’m the weirdo who doesn’t 😉 In my mind my birthday falls into the same category as New Years. A day where you review what all your goals were for the past year and you realize how many you did (or didn’t) achieve. I’m all for the reassessing and being proud of your accomplishments, but what I don’t like is the feeling of expectation that comes with it. For example, at New Years you’re expected to come up with at least 1 New Year’s Resolution. I hate that! My stubborn side comes out screaming “Don’t tell me what I HAVE to do”, then there’s the….logical (I can’t think of a better word) part of me that says “Why do I have to wait until January 1st to make a New Years Resolution? If I want to change something or work towards something, why can’t I just decide right then and there?”. I tend to have the same kind of attitude on my Birthday. People say to me “So, how do you feel?”….um…well I WAS feeling fine until you put this expectation on me that I should feel any different. 
 
Every June I also tend to have arguments with those close to me about how I “should” be celebrating my birthday. This year I finally did what I’ve always wanted to do. I cancelled everything. Yep, you read that right. I cancelled everything. No parties, no dinners out, no cake, no commotion. And you know what’s funny? The people around me are PISSED about it! My entire life I’ve been told “It’s your birthday, celebrate it how you want to” but then I get dragged out to lunches or dinners with people that I haven’t seen in months (or worse, since my last birthday) or even people that I don’t want to be there to celebrate with me. I’ve even had some of my very best friends completely forget about my birthday, so why would I force them to drop everything? I mean, in reality, it’s just another day isn’t it? 
 
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love and appreciate the fact that my friends and family want to celebrate me. It makes me feel loved. But not everyone has the same ideas that they do. Not everyone enjoys being in the spotlight or celebrating. I’m a homebody, I’m an introvert and I’m a people pleaser. So it’s actually a pretty big deal for me to put my foot down and say NO this year. This year I’m doing things my way. I’m working towards certain goals, and I don’t have time to live my life pleasing others. Even if they can’t understand that. 
 
This year is going to be different and I have a feeling a lot of people aren’t going to like it. But you know what? IDGF! It’s my life and I’m the only person in control of my own happiness. It’s time I take back control of my life.
 
If you’re annoyed at how your life is turning out or feeling like you can’t do any better, remember that you ALWAYS have a choice. The FIRST step in the right direction is to decide once and for all that you’re going to change your life. Make the promise to yourself. If you’ve survived through this whole back story (you might have the patience of a Saint!), then keep reading because this, my friends, is how you take control back.  
 

Here's How To Control Your Happiness:

Once you’ve made the promise to yourself it’s time to take action! The universe will have your back if it sees that this is something you’re serious about and really want. Before you dive into these steps, grab a pen and paper…you’re going to need it. 

9 Steps to control your own happiness and change your life

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  1. Assess – Asking yourself “How Can I change my life” can be a little overwhelming. Break it down into chunks. Where are you the least happy? Is it your job? Your relationships? Where you live? Write out every single area (Work, Home, Family, Friends, Education) on one side of a sheet of paper,  then next to it rate it from 1 to 10 (10 being completely happy and satisfied with that aspect). Once you see how you’ve rated everything, it will be easier to decide where to start. I would suggest starting with the category that’s closest to 1. It will mean you’ll have a lot of work to do but do you really want to drag that dead weight around?

  2. Pick Something – Picking more than one area of your life to tackle at a time can be setting yourself up for failure. You only have so many hours in a day. If you want to change something, give it your all. Work on once thing at a time, jumping around from one aspect to another is just going to scatter you and drain your energy.  Regardless of what you pick, pick something, anything. Commit to making it work. 

  3. Break It Down – Now that you know what category you’re working on, it’s time to dive in (you still have that pen and paper right?). It’s easy to say “my relationships aren’t where they could be” but what exactly does that mean. Let’s say you chose relationships as the area to work on, what specifically are you not happy with? Are you not happy with the state of the relationship? Because that will mean you need to put more effort into it. Are you referring to your relationship with your parents, your spouse, your BFF? Write down WHY you’re not happy with that area of your life so you know exactly what to fix….and what to avoid repeating again in the future. 

  4. Plan it – You now know what isn’t working and why. What would be the ideal situation? Let’s say your relationship with your BFF is rocky and you think it’s worth saving. You’ve recognized the relationship is at it’s lowest point, so what would be the ideal circumstance? Do you want to talk to each other daily? Do you want to have a dinner date monthly to catch up and have more girl time? What does the perfect relationship with your BFF look like to you?

  5. Visualize it –  This kinda of ties into step number 4. Continue to focus on what the absolute best scenario would be. Feel what it would feel like, picture every detail. Visualize it on a regular basis (daily if you can). {Side Note: This is a huge key factor when you’re manifesting}

  6. Recognize your thoughts – Your brain physically can’t think of a negative thought and a positive thought at the same time BUT your thoughts have this insane ability to affect your mood. So if you’re constantly thinking about how this change isn’t going to work, it’s not going to mean anything and it’s dumb, then just save yourself the effort and stop now. Staying positive isn’t always easy but it’s necessary. If you don’t believe that you can make the change, then nothing will change. Thoughts Become Things. Also, I said in the beginning of this section that the universe has your back if you start taking action. If you’re putting out shitty vibes, you’re going to get shitty results. Plain and simple. You can check out 7 Ways To Raise Your Vibes for ideas to keep your vibe high and putting good thoughts out there. 

  7. Take Action – You’ve recognized which area of your life you want to improve and why. You’ve focused your thoughts on how to make it better. Now it’s time to do something about it. In step number 4 I used the example of wanting to talk to your BFF every day. If that’s the case then pick up the phone. Start small, you don’t want to go from not talking to someone for months then bombard them with daily phone calls. Being a stage 5 clinger is not an option here. Start by picking up the phone once a week and gradually start increasing the amount of times your reach out.  It’s okay to tell your friend that you miss her (or him) and want to fix it and make more of an effort to keep in touch. They might even agree with you and put in just as much effort. That sounds like the start of a beautiful shift 😉 

  8. Have a self care routine – You might be thinking “wtf does a self care routine have to do with this?” let me tell you! How can you nourish your relationships (or career, or home life etc) if you’re not nourished yourself? If you’re feeling low energy, the last thing you’re going to want to do is drag your ass out of bed to fix a shitty aspect of your life. It’s going to feel like too much. You need to take care of yourself! Start small but for the love of god, start something! If it means taking a 20 minute bubble bath once a week, at least it’s a step in the right direction. You can’t pour from an empty cup. You’ve made the commitment to revamp your life, this is your life and your happiness. It’s time to start putting you first. 

  9. Give it time- Remember, things don’t happen over night. This will take time. It took a long time for your life to become what it is so it only makes sense that it will take time to turn it around. But isn’t there a saying like Good Things Come To Those Who Wait? That saying has always annoyed me. Probably because I’m impatient and when I want something I want it now lol.
 
If you’re following all of the above, it’s almost impossible to think it wouldn’t work. But sometimes you’re just too close to the situation and you can’t see all the progress you’ve made. I would suggest to dive into that category every 3 months or so. Let’s say you’re goal was to get a new job and maybe it’s been three months and you’re still in your dead end craptacular job. This is where reflecting on the past 3 months can help. Record your progress! Maybe you’ve seriously improved your interview skills, or you’ve bulked up your resume. Maybe you’ve established a better relationship with your boss and they’re on a mission to help you improve your skills or move on to something bigger and better too. Regardless, you’re taking action and progressing and that’s what’s important. Be proud of yourself and how far you’ve come. And remember, not everyone has the balls to take back control of their life, so even if you’re feeling down or like you’ve gotten knocked off track you’re still a hell of a lot further than most people. 
 
I’d love to hear what aspect you would like to change and what your plan is. Or maybe you’ve tried these steps when you were making a change in the past, how did it all work out for you?
shout out to unsplash-logoBrooke Cagle for this perfect cover image

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