Welcome to A Wise Woman Once Said! This blog has been a long time in coming and I am delighted that you have chosen to join me. Let me start by saying I am NOT the wise woman mentioned in the title. Yes, I have gained wisdom throughout my trials and life experiences, but I have a long way to go before I would ever consider myself close to wise. Each blog will be based on a quote by a female and we will explore many different topics that can improve our own lives throughout our journey together, but where should we start? Through my life coaching, I have discovered that one of the main things people struggle with is why they are not happy. That was me in the not too distant past. I had a good job, great home, a loving family, and an adoring husband. Why was I not happy? I kept wondering what was wrong with me. If this is hitting you close to home then today is your lucky day! Please join me on the first leg of our adventure and
FIND THE JOY IN YOUR NOW
“You are the one that possesses the keys to your being. You carry the passport to your own happiness.” Diane von Furstenberg
As we continue this journey together you will slowly learn about the Soap Opera Rollercoaster that has been my life. Those of you who know me or know of me may already be aware of the tragedies that have befallen my family. Most of the time I have been able to hide the debilitating crumbling of my soul, but it eventually brought me to my knees and I found myself sitting in my car alone in a park with a bottle of pills in my hand… only to discover that I only had a sip of water left in my bottle, which was barely enough to force down one pill. I even felt like a failure for not having the water. Talk about kicking the dog when she is down!
I firmly believe that good can come from all things and my life has been a true testament to this. I can tell you the day and the hour when my life was forever changed. There have been many such times through the years, but November 14, 2001 at 7:20 AM is one that changed the complete trajectory of my life. I heard a news break on WIKY 104.1 radio as I was pulling into the parking lot of the middle school where I was teaching Art. I remember thinking about that poor family, and praying for them on the spot for God to provide them with the strength and internal peace necessary to be able to go on. Little did I know I was praying for myself and my family… but this is a story for another time.
So where are you in your quest for happiness? Are you one of the people who constantly has horrible things happen to them and you are always wondering why me, or are you one who has no reason that you know of to be depressed and anxious, but you still are in the pit of unhappiness? The good news is that it doesn’t matter where you are or what your circumstances are. You CAN find joy in your now.
So to begin, I want you to think about what brings you joy and makes you happy? When you feel the joy, how long does it last? How do you feel once the feeling dies? External happiness is a never-ending cycle. You really want something and you know it will make you happy, then you get it and you are happy for a while, but then the feeling dies and you are back to either feeling as bad as you did before you got it, or sometimes even worse because you thought it would make you happy but it didn’t change anything. As an example, think back to the last time you got a raise. Before you got it you probably really hoped you would get one and were really looking forward to getting that extra boost to your income. At first it may have felt great, but how much of a difference did it really make? We tend to spend our new extra on things we want, not on our needs, so how did it help? You may have gotten momentary satisfaction from how you spent your money, but it is fleeting and eventually you realize it is still not enough. Now I know I am generalizing, so if you are a saver of all things extra this may not apply to you, but I am sure you can come up with something similar that makes sense to you in your reality. The point is that the satisfaction is fleeting and before too long we want something more.
Thinking of desire as your happiness is like a drug addiction. The more you desire and then get, the more you need to reach the same stage of euphoria the next time, so you are constantly doing what you can to reach that state again and again until it overwhelms you. The more you desire the more you need to make you happy. So how do we stop the cycle you ask? We start by understanding our desires, where they come from, and what is standing in the way of finding our happiness.
You need to think of your happiness as an onion, made up of many layers.
The internal central core is your Current Mood or Emotion.
Wrapped around that are your Negative Patterns, how you are wired, and your unconscious or automated actions, desires, wants, etc.
Time (past and future) is next. what you have experienced, remember, or your conscious thoughts.
Enclosing that layer are your Ego and Identity. This is your minds idea of who you are and the roles attached to it.
The next layer is your Limiting Beliefs or the ideas others have implanted in or forced on us and for which we have given our unconscious agreement.
The outside of your life onion is your Desires and the Envy that comes with it. This is supported by outside influences and programming.
If you look at each layer you should notice that the closer you get to the outside layer the less it has to do with you and the more it centers on the influence of others and the outside world. Because these things are easier to look at we will start there and peel the layers away one layer at a time.
Today”s assignment – It is totally up to you whether you decide to participate in the activities, but it really does help you dig in and discover who you really are so please try it. The daily assignments will never be extreme, but you will truly get out of this what you are willing to put into it. Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired? If so, then give this a chance. As I say “daily” assignments I mean on the days that I post. As much as I would like to say I will be able to do it everyday, the reality is that I work multiple jobs and sometimes I will not have the time so please bear with me! I hope to post 2-3 times per week. The first assignment was create to help you reflect on what you believe will create your joy and happiness, and why you believe it. It is important to know that reflecting on your desires and discovering if they are authentically yours or not can help you let go of the desires that are holding you back. Please answer the following question and put some thought into it.
Layer 1 Desire
- Why are the circumstances and/or things (desires) that you believe will make you happy?
- Why do you believe that those circumstances will create happiness?
- Are any of the above influenced primarily by your society, friends, or upbringing? If yes, which ones?
- Are your authentic desires different than the above? If so, what are they?
That is it, so take your first step in Finding the Joy in Your Now!