So many people are writing and talking about happiness that it almost seems like there’s nothing new to say. But that’s exactly why I’m writing about it; there really is nothing new to say because the path to happiness is well known; we just need to hear it presented in different ways.
For me, I learned about the “voice in my head” from Eckhart Tolle in “A New Earth” but I learned about my fear of being vulnerable from Brene Brown in her TED talk “The Power of Vulnerability”. I learned that I can control how I react to the things that happen in life from Ajahn Brahm, a Buddhist monk. From Tony Robbins, I learned that everyone has something that’s holding them back and the only thing that moves us forward is the decision to let it go and move on.
I don’t claim to offer any specifically new insights. I only hope that my voice will speak to someone who needs to hear it in the way I say it. I am a person who likes to know why and I also strongly drawn to science. So some of what I share comes from that perspective.
As I made my switch from a career in public relations to a career as a massage therapist and health educator, I gained practical information about our bodies and its connection to the mind. My program of study was nearly a year long and we had a heavy focus on science including anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, biology, and some solid overviews of pathology. My massage school was far more than just learning bodywork techniques.
At the same time, I devoured books, videos, blogs, and in person conversations about mental and emotional wellness. I started to see connections between what I was learning about how the body functions on a scientific level and how that effects our mental and emotional states.
Until I did this research, I thought that my emotions just happened; I had no idea that I could manage how I feel. I also thought that my inner dialogue, the things I would say inside my head, was my trusted guide; I had no idea that the inner chatter of my mind would be my greatest road block to being mentally healthy. I had chronic anxiety, depression, insomnia, heartburn, and a generally crappy view of life.
I can say now that for most of us, the path to happiness isn’t easy but it is worth it. You just have to decide that you are tired of feeling how you feel. You have to admit that doing things the way you’ve always done things isn’t working. You have to be patient with yourself. You have to allow yourself to fail and then get up and try again.
Finding happiness is actually about finding yourself and we are so often wrapped up in how things “should be” or how we “should” think or act, that we don’t actually know who we are. So to get this right, you’re going to have to be brave and be willing to dig deep. I’ve been down this path before, so I know its twists and turns. I’m honored to be your guide.