At a very young age, I developed the skill of manifesting. I clipped magazines for the perfect wedding dress, first home, vacation destinations, and cars. No one taught me to "vision board" or manifest, I was just cutting out pictures of stuff I wanted. I used to drive by a mansion in my hometown and dream of living there. Ten years later I lived there, drove the car, wore the dress and travelled to the destinations. What I had forgotten to focus on was the feelings I wanted to accompany the stuff. I was neither happy or unhappy. I was existing without enjoying. I also focused on things I wanted to avoid like divorce and children who weren't healthy. So the universe gifted me with one of each of those as well. After a nasty divorce (really, are any divorces fun?) and a diagnosis of severe autism for my first-born, I began to notice a trend. What I focused on got bigger. Like a magnifying glass to my thoughts both the things I really wanted and really didn't want were appearing around me.
What did I learn from this? Be intentional with your thoughts. If thoughts become reality then avoiding the news, gossip, and unhappy people makes a lot of sense. Peter Pan's advice to think happy thoughts now has a whole new meaning. What reality are you manifesting?
Once upon a time there was a little girl who loved to please people. She knew if she got perfect on a spelling test her mom would be happy. She knew if she looked pretty she became popular and popular was good. She learned to be agreeable and not have opinions because conflict wasn't valued in her world- better to just acquiesce. Gradually this girl mastered the art of pleasing others but forgot entirely what she loved and wanted. She lived in a beautiful home, travelled to beautiful places, and seemed to have it all. The one day she woke up to discover that none of this had been her dream and in fact she was so out of touch with her own feelings that she couldn't even decide if she was happy or unhappy, angry or apathetic, disappointed or deluded. She didn't have the words for the feelings and even when given the words, she couldn't describe what happy felt like in her body or where what it was like to be angry.
That girl was me at 30.
I am proud to say that over a decade later, I have mastered happy. I am truly the happiest person I know. I am certain about my likes and dislikes and I have pretty strong opinions on a vast assortment of topics that I share enthusiastically despite the opinions of my friends and family.
I have attended courses, workshops, read hundreds of books, and been a diligent student of me. Sound self-centered? I choose to think of it as my duty. A gift I give myself and my family & extended family.
Happy is our natural state, our birthright. As one of my favourite mentors says "happiness is a choice", so why not choose it?
Need help en route to your happy place? Find a mentor, take a class. Here are a few great tips to get you started: