Archives For happiness

Blissfully aware

September 5, 2012

It’s good to recognize what makes you happy. Happy people experience lows in life just like everyone else; they just don’t remain in the valleys for too long. To steal a quote from the Brave Girls Club, “Life is absolutely meant to be enjoyed, not just endured.”

We all must endure hardship…such is life. We must also recognize when life is good and soak up every ounce of it.

I am sitting at one of my son’s baseball practices and it’s an absolutely beautiful evening. There’s no time like the present to start a new series about how I am blissfully aware of so much good around and inside of me. So here’s my first installment of what contributes to my happiness:

1. My dog rocks. She’s a crazy ol’ lady whose sole purpose in life is to make me smile.

2. My husband is a good coach and mentor to our boys and their friends. I have known my husband since high school and I remember how much fun it was to watch him play basketball. Now I get to see him transfer his love of the game to his sons.

3. I love to learn. Starting a new job earlier this summer reminded me that I am happiest when I am challenged and introduced to new people and new ideas.

4. As much as I love meeting new people, I value my tried and true friends even more. One of the best perks of every week is getting to sit next to my BFF and pretend we’re legit radio personalities on the Pat&JT Show. Total strangers are actually starting to recognize my voice outside of the studio and that’s awesome.

5. Freaking Panera. I don’t know if there’s a more perfect place on earth.

6. The joy I experience when I feel like I am making a positive impact on others. I hope my actions speak as loudly as my words when it comes to parenting my kids. I hope I always treat people the way they should be treated…not because I am being judged by others, but because I judge myself.

7. The feeling I get after a great workout is second to none. (Well, technically, eating super bad food feels pretty damn amazing too. Not gonna lie.)

8. I love this quote: “Don’t wait for inspiration or passion to find you. Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air, and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you.” – Taken from You Are Not Special Commencement by David McCullough Jr. 

OK, your turn. What are you blissfully aware of these days?

I have wanted to write this post for awhile now. I started tossing around ideas awhile back about how to properly articulate what I think about life and the direction it takes us sometimes.

When a child begins to grow and discover their own personal potential, their innate strengths need not be defined. People can naturally see and appreciate them. They come easily and the child feels a sense of happiness anytime they are given the chance to share them with others.

Strengths are as unique to the child as the color of their hair or the tone of their voice. They help form their identity –  their own little island.

As we grow, the sea of possibilities surrounding our own personal islands is endless.

One’s course may start off smoothly, but rougher waters are inevitable. I firmly believe the farther you drift from your own personal identity or island, the more treacherous travel you will likely face and the greater risk you run of feeling lost.

We grab onto life preservers (power, possessions, influence, relationships) to make us feel invincible or to simply stay the course. We set ourselves up to believe we are only measured by how hard we crash into waves and by how great of a distance we travel.

Sometimes we get so caught up in the journey that we forget to look back at our own island. We realize that while life preservers may help move us forward, they don’t guarantee happiness.

My island is not crowded. It is not noisy nor stressful. On it are housed three or four things that come naturally to me and make me feel happy. I refuse to lose sight of them no matter where life takes me.

Have you thought lately about what makes up your island?