Create a Mantra and Choose Happiness Every Damn Day
I am going to let you in on a little secret – a secret on the key to happiness. A guaranteed win on being happy every damn day. Perhaps you are lucky and you know the secret already. If you don’t, you may not like it, because in order to accept it you are going to have to take full responsibility for yourself.
So, how does one be happy everyday? You choose it. Yep. Choose to be happy every day and you will be happy every day.
This isn’t a ludicrous concept. If there is anything I have learned in reading and researching on mindfulness, awareness and living in the moment, it is that happiness is a choice. No one likes to hear this - we want to blame our unease, unhappiness or angst on someone or something else. If it isn’t our fault then there just isn’t anything we can do about it!
Already you might be objecting or going over recent scenarios to refute this thought. No doubt we are constantly put in difficult situations that challenge us physically, emotionally and psychologically. And of course, there are some things that are totally out of our control. We can’t control it if someone cuts us off on our way to work. We can’t control what our friends or loved ones say or do that might hurt us. We can’t control that awful project that gets dropped on our desk at work. We can’t control everything, but we can control some things! We can control how we react. We can decide that nothing that happens today will ruin this day.
It is a simple approach, but not necessarily an easy approach. Choose to be happy every day and you will be happy every day. Yes, there are days it is hard to believe it is true, but by taking charge of your happiness and making it a personal choice under your control, can also be an empowering thing. Life can’t bring you down if you take control over your own happiness-factor.
For me, this is a work in progress, because it is a challenge that needs constant attention! To help this along I created a morning mantra. Five days a week I spend a good 5 minutes talking to myself in the car on my way to work. I look at the world around me and remark on its beauty, I take gratitude for at last 3 things and then I make a conscious choice to be happy, present and peaceful.
I literally talk out loud to myself. I identified this as a good time because I am on my way to work, I am alone, it is quiet and I do it often. I don’t always do my morning mantra on the weekends, because I don’t need to do too much convincing that life is awesome on a Saturday morning. Although, if I find the right moment I will fit it in.
My morning mantra might sound a little something like this:
"Today is a beautiful day. The sky is clear and the air is crisp." - Pause, look around and find beauty in the day, regardless of the weather. There is good in every day.
"Today I am grateful for Bryan, for his kindness and generosity. Today I am grateful for my health and my mobility. Today I am grateful for the warmth of my house, my clothes and my car on this cold day" - Pause and think about those things. Express gratitude for whatever feels important that day, big or small!
"Today is going to be a great day. Today I will choose happiness. Today I will choose presence. Today I will choose peace. There is nothing that I can't overcome today with ease and peace. And because I choose happiness, I choose presence and I choose peace, they will be so." - Your word choices may differ depending on what matters to you; maybe you want patience, strength or clarity. Choose what you want, need and demand.
I am sure you thinking how unnatural saying all of that must feel. Truth is, it does not feel normal or natural to do this, in fact, it feels much the opposite. There are absolutely days it feels forced, however, I have found that doing this in the morning sets the tone for the day. It gets your mind and attitude in check before the day gets busy, crazy and before you are faced with external interferences. Seriously try this, take a few minutes to yourself and decide what type of day it is going to be - and make it a good one!
I choose happiness, presence and peace everyday. Does this mean that I am immune to unhappiness, stress or chaos? No, but it does help to give me the strength to overcome those feelings and experiences.
Go ahead, try a morning mantra and make some good choices today and everyday!