“I wish that I had let myself be happier.”
This is one of the top five regrets of dying people. We often have this false sense of immortality, that we can take life for granted, put off resolving conflicts with our loved ones, and avoid doing the things we love because we think there’s “still time”. We put off our happiness and instead keep striving endlessly to achieve yet another accomplishment, never really accepting who we are and realizing that happiness must come from within.
I am also guilty of this. For the longest time I struggled with being happy and content because I didn’t think I was thin, rich, or successful enough. I put off doing the things I loved, like traveling, getting dressed up to go out with my girlfriends, or celebrating my accomplishments because of these beliefs. And I didn’t allow myself to be happy because I felt like I wasn’t “there” yet in regards to having my dream life.
The ironic thing is, I did achieve a certain level of success, abundance, and fitness that many would be envious of! I moved across the country in pursuit of a richer living experience. I worked out like a maniac and felt healthier than I had been in years. I rose above all my fears to quit my day job so I could grow a business centered around changing people’s lives and living my purpose, and yet, was I really happy?
No, I wasn’t happy. The struggle was continuous for me. I still wanted to achieve more, have more, wanted things to be different so I could have a “perfect” life. And it was EXHAUSTING.
There is no perfect life. There is just life and all the experiences that come with it.
Now I know what you may be thinking. You don’t want to allow yourself to be happy because you’re afraid of growing complacent or settling, which will prevent you from moving forward or progressing in your life. Or you’re resisting being happy because you say, how can I be happy when my current situation sucks? Being happy now means that you’re ENJOYING your life while still making those necessary changes: pursuing your goals and dreams, appreciating the things and people around you, and just being present to the beauty and joy that is everywhere. You get to just finally ENJOY life!
So here’s why it’s critical to be happy now:
- Life is short. Today is a gift and tomorrow is no guarantee. We can’t predict what will happen, so the only moment you truly have is NOW. Make the most of it by being happy and enjoying your life!
- You want more success, love, or fulfillment? Then be happy! Sounds counter-intuitive, but being happy now will attract the things/changes you want for your life, instead of the other way around!
- Your goal to be happy is a moving target; you’ll never really reach it. You may think that you’ll be happy and fulfilled after you find that perfect relationship or build a business that is financially and spiritually fulfilling, but once you accomplish that goal, you will have created 2 more in its place.
It doesn’t matter where you are, how you are, or what you don’t have in your life. You CAN be happy now without changing a thing about your current situation.
1. Let go of the crap from your past
Many people overlook this step. Or they think they’ve let go and made peace, when in actuality they still carry these resentments, memories, and beliefs around with them, clogging their energy level and ultimately harming their self-love and self-worth.
And I was no exception either. The resentments and hurts from my past were what prevented me from taking my life and my business to the next level. They held me back from feeling like I DESERVED to upgrade my life. And the scary thing was, I was very unaware of how toxic these thoughts were to my happiness and well-being!
“When you hold onto resentments, the only person you’re harming is YOURSELF.” [Tweet this!]
It’s like you’re drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. It’s just not going to work!
You may think that from this point on you just need to focus on doing the “right” things, like overcoming your fears, taking big action, thinking all the right thoughts, or being positive, etc. But you will eventually hit an energetic barrier. It will start to feel unnatural because you’ll be forcing yourself to take action from a place of desperation instead of inspiration. And who wants to live life forcing ourselves to do things we really don’t “feel” like doing?
Additionally, deep down, your sneaky little ego will continue to fuel your self-doubt and unworthiness, which will end up preventing you from taking the bold action steps in order to take your life or business to the next level.
2. Choose to be exactly who you are and where you are at this very moment
The key word here is CHOICE.
So you hate your current job, career, or relationship. And all you do all day is think about how much you hate it and how you want to change it, or complain to others about it, and resist the fact that it IS your reality. By resisting your current situation, you are actually perpetuating it.
Think about it, exactly how long have you felt “stuck” in your situation, despite all your good intentions and effort to get yourself out of it?
What you resist persists. What you leave alone will disappear. Don’t believe me? Try it on.
Instead of resisting where you are in your life, e.g. career, business, relationship, health, etc, what if you CHOSE it? What if you CHOOSE to be exactly where you are now? How would you feel differently about your current situation? Can you start to feel the RELEASE of pressure and anxiety from constantly fighting or trying to change your current reality? Are you starting to see it diminish in intensity?
When you accept exactly where you are and stop spending time and energy fighting or wondering why you’re in your current situation, you free up mental, spiritual, and emotional energy to take different action so you can create the results you want for your business and life.
You may think it’s defeatist, but in actuality you are empowering yourself to OWN exactly where you are so you can begin to create an alternate reality for yourself.
3. Be grateful
You’ve heard this one before. Be grateful for where you are and what you have. This is also something I need to be reminded of daily too. So do it now. Take out a piece of paper and answer the following questions:
- What are you grateful for?
- Who are you grateful for?
- What is already abundant in your life?
- What is already working wonderfully in your life?
- What are the things you’re happy about?
- What accomplishments can you celebrate?
I guarantee if you do this exercise or journal about it on a daily basis, you will not only be happier, but you will bring even more abundance, joy, and miracles into your life.
4. Stop striving and just be
Stop striving to reach a target that keeps on moving! Achievement of one of your goals only brings temporary happiness until you can accomplish the next big thing. It is a vicious cycle that will leave you frazzled, burned out, unfulfilled, and NEVER really enjoying or appreciating the moment you are in. You will miss life’s miracles by only living in the past or the future.
5. Let go of your identification with all the crap you’ve been carrying around
Sometimes we don’t realize that we can get really wrapped up in our limiting beliefs to the point of not seeing anything beyond that, i.e. we begin to IDENTIFY so much with the fears, self-doubt, and feelings of unworthiness that it becomes our reality. We’ve lived with them for so long that we’re not even sure what’s underneath all that gunk anymore (well let me remind you: your wondrous, luminous, gorgeous, and amazing self!). So we cling onto this obsession and it becomes almost impossible to get out of that dark place, i.e., we cling onto that victim mentality.
So, are you shielding behind being a victim of your own life? It may be more subtle then you realizd! Even if you are not, it’s time you let go of your identification with all the crap that’s been holding you back.
Decide to move past the negative things people have said or led you to believe about yourself, about you failing, not being good enough, never making it, being weird, stupid, ugly or fat!
It’s time you stopped giving them power by living like these false beliefs are your truth! Liberate yourself by letting go of other people’s beliefs.
6. Do the things you love today
As a matter of fact, stop putting off doing things in general! What is that thing you’ve always dreamed of doing? Jump out of a plane? Backpack around the world? Write a children’s book? Fly an airplane? We often don’t go after these things because we are afraid of failing or we think we have lots of time so we put them off. Shift this type of thinking by remembering that life is short! Don’t end up on your deathbed having all these regrets that you didn’t live your life fully when you had the chance.
So now I want to hear from you. Here is some food (questions) for thought.
What are you not doing or putting off because you are not as successful, rich, skinny, or happy as you want to be?
What if you allowed yourself to be happy NOW?
What do you CHOOSE for your life now so you can empower yourself and create the change you want?
How can you unidentify with all the emotional baggage and limiting beliefs you’ve been carrying around?
Chinh Pham is fear conqueror, life coach, and trailblazer helping people find their purpose, embrace their passion, and become badass in their biz and life!
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How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.