Thursday, November 04, 2010

Are You Truly Happy?

This morning, the rain seems to be a lot heavier, with a bit more steam behind it. I can’t imagine just mere clouds in the sky having so much tears to shed; a constant flow of sadness and bleakness barreling down my roof and the streets below. In ways, it’s a beautiful, comforting sound, and in other ways it feels very dreadful and sad. On the other hand, the rain inspires me to write, however it also makes me think of things in the past, conjuring up thoughts that tug upon my heartstrings: a past love, a death of a close friend or feelings of inadequacies, etc. Sometimes it even churns my current situation and asks, “Are you truly happy?” Am I truly happy? What does that even mean? What does that mean to each and every individual? “Happiness”. The word alone sometimes makes me wonder if it’s all a facade; a mask that hides the hidden tears, just as umbrellas save us from the rain. We’re still “in the rain”, yet not getting the full effect, showing everyone around us that we’re okay - we’re “dry”, at least for now. I think many of us do that in life: put a smile underneath all that sadness. Truth is, it’s just human nature.

We all get into funks or little depressions in life, but sometimes we find ourselves trapped in it for longer than expected. I know for myself, I would dwell in it, welcome the sadness because it was a good outlet for my emotions. On the other hand, the side effect was a lingering feeling of hopelessness that seemed to have parked itself with no motivation to move out. I couldn’t shake it. I decided to go with my last resort which should have been my first resort: God. I prayed and prayed but more so, listened. Meditation is so important while you are praying. Without meditation, it’s like talking and talking without listening to any feedback in return. It’s pointless. What I found through prayer and meditation was the only answer possible. It was my only ticket into slipping out of this depression: gratitude. Well, what did I have to be thankful for? Things were going crappy and it seemed as though there was no change in sight. But wait --I’m breathing, I have my family, I have my friends, my health and I have this wonderful outlet & career that makes me --- “me”. I have a job that I love, to which I can’t even call it “work” because it’s exactly the opposite. It’s my passion. It’s my lot in life. So instead of praying for this and praying for that, or perhaps, just wanting "more", I thanked God for everything I have ‘now’ and everything good that is about to come. I also thank God for the best day of my life, before the morning even begins. That right there, is instilling faith (in whatever faith you practice) and putting positive reinforcement into your life, which in turn, brings back a positive outcome. Although I’m of Christian faith, I have learned a lot by those who practice Buddhism.

To some, this may sound a bit ‘wishy-washy’, but for me it’s truth. It borderlines the laws of attraction to some degree, but more so, it’s all about faith in knowing that your gifts from God (or your faith alone in whatever practice) are coming into fruition. Faith alone speaks volumes and shakes up the universe bringing back things that are supposed to be just for you. They were in fact, already there, waiting for you to call upon them. It’s not about monetary things I speak of --it’s the little things in life that make us happy like having no pain when you wake up or sipping on a delicious cup of coffee with nobody interrupting you. I used to be an adrenaline junkie where I had to get my high off of some sort of excitement in life, whether buying a big ticket item that I would soon get tired of, or spicing up life with a big party, until the next morning I had to clean everything up and retreat into hermit-mode. (I still love having parties though.) But it's more than that - it’s all about the constant joy, whether you are feeling happy or perhaps feeling a bit down about something. The constant joy of gratitude: knowing what you have right now; what’s right in front of you. Some people take these wonderful things in life for granted. This past year I went through many health issues as you’ve seen if you’ve been reading me for some time. I must have visited the ER about twenty times with various health problems, having doctors wanting to open me up and dispose of my gallbladder as well as other organs just to "eliminate" this & that, to finding out I had all sorts of gastrological problems. I came home and automatically thanked God for healing me completely, even as I sat there in pain crying. I prayed that God would baffle the doctors by healing anything that was detrimental to my health. I had complete faith that nothing---I mean nothing was wrong with me. When I went in for more testing, oddly enough they couldn’t find anything, as they have seen before. The doctors were completely baffled. After my last visit to the doctor’s office plus an endoscopy - I have never felt better in my life. "Umm, your stomach is fine and there seems to be nothing wrong..." the doctor said, as he shuffled through my medical records indicating a much different story. This stuff really works! By your own words and most of all, complete faith, you can turn things around.

With any circumstance, whether it be health issues, relationship problems or just a dose of depression, your words have so much power. I used to toss all that up to a buncha’ b.s. - but after experiencing this for myself, I know for a fact, (through faith) that it works. With the clocks soon changing back one hour this weekend and the nights creeping up on us faster, many of us are bound to experience S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) which is the depletion of your vitamin D, which we get from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, milk and by through supplements. With lower levels of vitamin D, most people experience depression or a lack of motivation. So even on a physical level, but keeping our vitamin D levels up, increasing our time outside and even buying one of those ultraviolet ray lights, you can up your doses. I prefer taking supplements, as I enjoy the evening hours very much. I’m like a vampire. But chemically, it can wreak havoc on your pysche without you experiencing anything ‘bad’ in your life. “I feel sad but I don’t know why”---is the most common thing heard when having S.A.D. You can get your levels checked by a doctor & see which source is best for you.

So what’s the secret to happiness? There is no secret because nobody is completely happy, unless they are content with having the constant joy that comes only through faith and positive thinking.

Here are some great quotes I picked out:

“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” ~Abraham Lincoln
“If you want to be happy, be.” ~Leo Tolstoy
“Happiness is never stopping to think if you are.” ~Palmer Sondreal
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” ~Mahatma Gandhi
Happiness is not a matter of events, it depends upon the tides of the mind.” - Alice Meynell
“Attaining Happiness is an ‘inside-job’.” ~Author unknown

To read more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com