Want a new start? Sure, have it. But don’t take you with you.
So many times we think that by going somewhere else (e.g. travelling), by doing something else (e.g. new company/ job), or by being someone else (e.g. the future thinner me with hair dyed a shade of completely different), that we’ll be happier.
And what happens? We’re thrilled and jumping around on cloud nine for about a week, or a month if you’re lucky, but then the same old problems creep up just under different names.
Why is that?
It’s because we think that by changing the external we can control and therefore change the internal. We think change in the outside world is what will make us happy.
I’ve definitely been guilty of that. I’ve changed jobs countless times, thinking that working in a private instead of a public company, would be better, or if I was working in a team instead of solo work would be more fun. I’ve done many roles, changed from 9 – 5 to shifts, changed professions completely and even moved countries. But I would always return to the same feeling of non-fulfilment yet a sense that there was more to life. Long term, my changes didn’t make things any different.
Why? Because I was changing the background, my scenery, but taking the same perspective with me. I was taking the me that blamed others, the me that as soon as I felt a twinge of unhappiness rushed to the nearest jobs forum to look for another change. In my mind, my circumstances were the biggest cause of my unhappiness, not me. I never took responsibility for making myself happy. And all that did was rob me of any power I had over my life and placed me in the victim mentality.
I read these quotes telling me to ‘fall in love with the now’ but never really got them, until one day when my derelict proverbial light bulb finally turned itself on.
I thought that if I accepted the now I would become complacent. That if me and the now got on par, I’d just reside to coasting through life and not really achieving anything worthwhile. What I’ve come to realize is by falling in love with the now, we learn to change our mind frame from one that looks for the silver lining’s evil twin, to one that looks for the beauty.
By spending your days cursing throughout your commute, rolling your eyes when your boss gives you a task you dislike, and then letting off steam by bitching in the staff room, all you’re doing is flexing that moaning muscle.
For 8 or more hours a day, you’re getting really really good at seeing the negative.
In a years time, you can waltz with Scrooge in the disapproval kingdom of doom and gloom.
Now if you switch your thinking to one that looks for reasons to be grateful, of which there are plenty – you have money coming in, you have a place to live, you’re not in a war-ridden country, you can walk/talk/see – you practice looking for the good.
Start looking for the positive in any situation, and it’s like doing brain reps to build up the strength of happiness.
So don’t take the old you with you to your future. Start with the now, and change the way your mind thinks.
You’ll become a lot more laid back, and happy, and then wherever you go or whatever you do, you will take the happy you with you.
And slowly, but very surely, your reality will transform.
Because like attracts like, so the happy you will be a magnet for happiness.