We are living in a world were we are told that we "deserve" to be happy. Like it's something that just happens. Now don't get me wrong I want people to be happy, but happiness is not something that just happens. You have to work on being happy. How do I know this? Well, I've spent the last few months working on being happy myself.
It's true I've had to work really hard on being happy even though I already have a great life. I have a wonderful husband who I trust and adore and I know adores me. I have four beautiful children who are healthy, kind and considerate human beings. I have super great family support with wonderful in-laws who I think are the best in the world. (I'm not kidding about this. They really are wonderful people.) I live in a house that is big enough for my family and is affordable. We always have enough to eat, our house has heat and running water, we have plenty of clothes for our family, we have two working cars and my husband has a great job that allows me to stay home fore the most part.
I am truly blessed.People are always talking about living the American Dream and I do. I really live the American Dream. I am not rich by any means and there are times when things get tight, but we are always blessed to make it through.
So after listing all of that why would I need to even try to be happy? It's because I was being selfish. I wanted more. I was always thinking of the things I didn't have instead of what I do have. I was always thinking that if "this would happen", or "if we could just make this amount of money I would be happy", but I wasn't. I was actually making myself miserable. I had everything right in front of me, but I was looking so far ahead hoping that someday my dreams would all come true that I didn't notice most of them already had.
We all can be happy, but we have to work on it. I read an article in a magazine about people in a third world country who have next to nothing, but that they were some of the happiest people in the world and I wondered how that was even possible. The guy who wrote the article said they were happy because they chose to be happy. Which proved to him and myself that happiness is a choice and I needed to choose to be happy.
So I did.
For the last few months I have tried to focus on being happy. When something that usually sent me down a path of unhappiness happened I learned to stop myself and look at the bright side. My mom calls it "The Pollyanna Attitude." If you don't know who Pollyanna is this might not make since, but it's a movie about a girl who against all odds tries to be happy. I hated the movie as a kid, but as an adult I can appreciate the message that was being sent. In the movie Pollyanna played what she called "the glad game", and that's what I started to do. When something happened or I started to feel sorry for myself I would think of ten things that I was glad about. Sounds corny I know, but it actually worked for me.
I know some of you are thinking, "there's nothing in my life to be glad about", but you're wrong. If you live in the U.S. you already have a head start. You have something that many do not. Freedom. As a woman this is huge. All you have to do is Google women's rights in the world and you will see how much you already have. Have you ever read how the woman in the middle east are treated? Enough said.
So this is my challenge to you. I want you to list ten things you are "glad" about and post it in the comment section. Saying it out loud is part of the game so as you write it down say it out loud. It's almost human nature to allow ourselves to be miserable, but just this once see if you can allow yourself to be happy.