Nurturing optimism in a fast changing world

Updated: 6 days ago

In the fast-changing world that we live in, it can be hard not to get swept away in it all, feeling sad and lonely in our sorrow. Instead of maintaining a natural sense of happiness in our disposition, we so frequently hide our sorrow, behind a whole lot of smoke and mirrors just to survive.

Do you feel like you have no choice but to put on your mask, to present to the world, each time you interact with others? Whether they be your family, friends or work colleagues. Amongst all the struggles, below the surface, your pain is very real, within your heart.

As a mindfulness coach, I see this a lot. Yet, the ability to nurture natural optimism is much easier than you may think. Optimism isn't just deciding to pretend to be happy. It is the true sense of genuine happiness, regardless of the storm, that wages its war all around you.

You might be surprised to know that for most of us, real happiness is a choice. It is not something that we need others to bring into our lives. No one makes you happy or sad. You and only you can choose this for yourself. By taking back control of your happiness, you take back your power. Never underestimate that power that exists in taking back your power to be happy.

In our modern society, we are impacted heavily by social and cultural conditioning to seek happiness in others. We not only seek it in others, but we also rely on it. To make things worse, we also seek it in things. So we binge eat, shop and enter into terribly unrewarding relationships of people-pleasing to receive the happiness inputs we desire.

The basic essence of happiness is about understanding firstly, what you do and do not have control over. You frequently have no control over how people and situations show up in your life. However, you have absolute control over how you respond to those people and situations. Accepting this reality can be a bitter pill to swallow. Sometimes things need to get worse before they get better.

To be accountable and take responsibility for your happiness takes courage. In the beginning, it may very well take all the courage you have to muster. But when you do the expansion of inner happiness is literally within your reach. It has been held within you all along. The only problem is that you were looking outside instead of within.

When I speak of happiness this way, I am not talking about blissful overjoy, like Tigger from Winnie the Pooh, jumping around on his tail. I am talking about a genuine joy, which is acceptance of every emotion as it arrives, letting it pass right through you instead of allowing it to stay within your heart.

When you learn the practice of surrendering to life, without gripping every comment, opinion and attempt to control you, something very magical happens. Love begins to grow from within you, rather than relying on outside input. You begin the beautiful journey of learning about yourself, expanding and growing from within. Acceptance then expands into self-love. Then over time, the external inputs that once impacted your happiness begin to soften. Thus, having less and less impact on your disposition. Eventually, you can become completely unimpacted by the storm that wages its war all around you.

I have taken this journey in my life. It is not a journey with an endpoint. It is a lifelong approach to self-love and redesigning the relationships you have, with both, yourself and others in your life. Today as a writer and mindfulness coach, I have the joy of helping to support this journey in others.

It is the journey of small steps forward, with gentleness, awareness and the courage to take back control.

Would you like to take back control of your happiness? Would you like to learn how to be present and stay calm, no matter the storm that wages all around you? You can have all this and more in your life.

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