Thursday, October 22, 2015

May My Soul Radiate Light and Love

They say happiness is a choice; I do believe that to an extent, and I also believe that we all deserve to be happy.  Life is short.  Who wants to waste their lives being miserable when you can find ways to make yourself happy.  There are those who say that at any moment in our lives, we can change our mindset and choose to be happy, but that is not always true; ask the homeless guy who hasn't eaten in three days if he can find happiness in his current situation.  There are circumstances that a changed mindset won't cure. Tragedy, grief – there are certain situations that are a process.  You have to go through the emotions until you get to a place of acceptance.  It's not always easy, but life isn't easy either.  We all have our emotional demons, and we all have to deal with them. 

When times get hard for me, I look at the things I do have that make me happy.  It's not a cure for all that ails you, but looking at the good things you do have can give you a better perspective. 

Here are a few things that make me happy:

1. The two little fur-balls of joy I call Mozart and Daisy.  My two kitties show me unconditional love and affection.  Sometimes they cling to me, and that can get annoying when I'm trying to accomplish something, but at the same time they just want to be close to me, and that makes me feel loved.

2. Having a sense of purpose in life makes me extremely happy.  I need to do something that makes me feel good about who I am, and what I'm doing in life.  It's not about how much money I can make, although I am keenly aware of how my path could progress if I stay focused, I want my work to be something I'm proud of.

3. Having a family that loves me no matter what and knowing they will be there for me when I need them.  I probably don't tell my siblings enough just how much I love them.  Being that our upbringing was more reclusive than most, we really were each other's best-friends for the earliest parts of our childhood.  I have a hermit inside me – reclusive upbringing – and we all have our own lives which means I don't always reach out and connect with my family as often as I should.

4. Knowing that my father is in good health.  That he is happy in his current marriage, and he and his wife are doing well.  There was a moment when his health was at risk.  He went into congestive heart failure and I was worried he wasn't going to survive, but he did.  I'm overjoyed that he found someone to share his life with after my mother, and that he is happy with the life they have created together.

5. Knowing that I can support myself and be an independent person.  I like knowing that I can take care of myself.  With any type of freelance work, there are scary moments when you wonder if you'll make enough to pay the bills, there will always be dry moments where you aren't making as much one month as you did the month before, but to watch myself grow, and see progress, and know that everything I've done to this point is just helping me to expand gives me a sense of accomplishment. 

6. Having friends who put up with me or the lack of me.  I'm always there for my friends.  Any one of them could call me right now, tell me they needed me, and I'd be there for them in a heartbeat.  I'm proud to have friends who understand that right now I'm working on me.  I love them all, but I have to put some things to the side so I can build myself a lasting career.

7. Being able to write, and earn some money while doing it, but really I'm happiest when I'm creating anything (for income or not).  Even if I'm the only one who has read my work, to see something written on paper gives me a sense of pride and fulfillment that I don't get from any other type of work I've ever done.

8. Reading books.  There is something wonderful about escaping into your own imagination through the words of another.  Reading sparks creativity for me.  My writing improves based on the quality of the books I read. 

9. Taking the time to read my favorite books over and over and over again with no interruptions.  There is a reason a book becomes my favorite, and I love to revisit those tales, but I don't always have the time to read.  When I can actually sit down and read a book from cover to cover, with no distractions, does in fact make me happy.

10. The moment when I can write and publish articles on my own site will make me insanely happy.  The idea of not having to look for work, but still be able to produce it, and earn from it, is my ultimate goal.  The majority of those I write for pay me to write content for their sites knowing that they are going to generate income through their advertising, and while I do make money from writing those articles, they make significantly more.  I'm happy to write for anyone who is willing to pay me, but I will be much happier when I'm writing for me, and taking the larger cut of profit for myself.

11. Publishing an article that I worked really hard writing.  Blood, sweat, and tears, these are the tough ones, and there is a sense of elation that comes from finishing a task that feels almost impossible to accomplish.  I'm not always an expert in what I write and that makes those types of articles harder to write.  When I finish writing one of those types of articles, and have been paid for it, not only am I relived but I'm elated that I was able to meet the expectations of the person I was writing the article for in the first place.

12. Learning something new.  I love being challenged.  I like when someone can teach me something I don't know.  Life is a learned experience, and I am grateful for those who give me a fraction of their knowledge.  Who knows, that knowledge could be the piece of the puzzle that helps me accomplish my goals. 

13. Helping someone solve a problem in their life; especially if it’s a problem that has been an issue for a long time.  Not all problems see a resolution.  I feel good when I help someone move past situations that have plagued them for awhile.  There are times when I wish I could do more, but that's not always an option.  I'm happy to do what I can to help.

14. Being given a compliment, particularly when I’m feeling down.  I think giving compliments are one of the nicest things people can do for each other.  It doesn't cost anything to lift someone's spirit.  It's nice to see people being nice to each other.

15. Going for a walk with no destination in mind.  Let's face it, anyone who knows me knows I wander.  I like to put on my walking shoes, step outside, and go in a direction.  I don't always have a clear path in mind.  Sometimes that is the best way for me to be.