Looking for Happiness

Do you ever have times when you’re in the middle of an emotional melt down and your negative self-talk is running rampant?

You’re saying things to yourself like “You’re so stupid!”, “I can’t believe you did that again!”, “You will never learn!” or “What a looser!”.

You’re flooded with the intensity of your feelings and beginning to spiral down so far that it seems like there’s no way out.

I want you to know that when this happens, your emotions are trying to get your attention. Your emotions have something very important to tell you. But you can’t hear them when your inner voice is focused on the negative and shouting loudly too.

When this happens you must take fast action to quiet the inner critical voice so that you can hear the clear message of your emotions. .

The practice of “Looking for Happiness” is a quick remedy for this challenging situation. It gives your inner critical voice something else to focus on.

Begin by looking around you. Find one thing that reminds you of happiness.

If you are outside a flower might draw your attention. Say to yourself “That flower reminds me of happiness.“

Your inner voice might reply, “I don’t want to do this”.

Don’t let this stop you. Keep doing the practice.

Look for something else that reminds you of happiness. “The fountain reminds me of happiness”. At this point your inner voice might start to turn its attention and say something like, “I like the sound of the water”.

Continue to look for something that reminds you of happiness. “The berries in that tree remind me of happiness”. This time your inner voice says, “Yes, the birds like to eat those berries and it’s fun to watch them flit from branch to branch.”

“Seeing that steam rising from my cup of tea reminds me of happiness.” By now, your inner voice is even more engaged. It says, “I like the swirly shape of the steam rising in the air”.

Look again for something that reminds you of happiness. “ Those smooth stones lining the window sill remind me of happiness”. Your inner voice is completely on board now and says, “Yes, they really are nice to look at. You placed them there so artfully.”

This process of “Looking for Happiness” and refocusing your inner voice can happen quite quickly.

At first it feels as though your heart is clamped shut. It’s a painful feeling.

As you look for happiness the grip on your heart begins to loosen. As you continue the practice becomes easier.

Then pop (just like loosening the lid to a jar), all of a sudden the emotion of love starts to flow again.

Your breathing deepens.

Your brow slowly unfurls.

A sense of calm enters your spirit.

And you become aware of the place inside yourself that knows all is well right now in this moment.

Recently, when my emotions were out of control, I called this practice to my rescue. It took no more than 5 minutes to move to a place where I could breath again.

When I calmed down I realized that my emotions wanted to remind me of the importance of attending to my own needs first. This also seems to be a common theme for the women I work with especially the ones who have children.

Try “Looking for Happiness” the next time you are caught in a downward spiral. There’s no need to be stuck in an emotional quagmire when calm clarity is so close at hand.

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