Have you ever been in a place in your life where you’ve allowed your emotions to control your happiness and or your future instead of your own decisions based upon rock solid principles? I think that many people have walked down the path in life where they are unhappy but don’t know that they have the power to create their own happiness.
I have always been someone who has kept a journal for pretty much every day of my life. What is amazing about doing this is if you are honest when you are writing you begin to identify patterns in your life or cycles that need to be challenged. I remember a day many years ago I started to read through my journals and I noticed that much of the times when I was unhappy it was because I was not taking responsibility for my own happiness. I had complaints about my life but I was surviving instead of choosing to break out of my own perceived limitations. There are so many reasons we can give for why we are limited and the majority are just not reality, but false perception.
It was about that time when I decided to burn all of my journals I had written throughout my life, keeping a few select pages, and start over with the understanding that I was fully responsible for my own happiness and never again would I record an emotion of complaint because I realized I was responsible for being grateful. I had spent too many years focusing on what I didn’t have instead of realizing I was fully able to both create what I did want and be grateful in the meantime.
I have heard so many times about how we need to get quiet and listen to what we really want or get in touch with what we are feeling. Emotions are wonderful because it is how we experience life, enjoy life, appreciate, worship, wonder, and discover. If we didn’t have emotions life would be meaningless in so many ways. But often time’s people will get in touch with their feelings of unhappiness or fear and decide that they cannot change things and choose misery. And it is often times so subtle that if you don’t realize that you keep falling into that pattern it’s easy for each year to pass with greater and greater regret.
I remember a time when I started to ask myself daily “what do you want?” Truth be told I really didn’t know the answer to this question. One day I was in my doctor’s office and he asked me why I was so stressed out and what was I asking myself daily. I told him I always ask myself what I want, but I never know the answer in its entirety. He said to me, “what about asking yourself what you don’t want?” This may seem obvious, but for me it was a huge revelation because by filtering the things I didn’t want in my life I could by default choose what I did. My stress reduced as a result.
There is a point where I think too much thinking can result in too much “feeling” and I believe there is a great freedom when we discover that we don’t have to live life based upon our feelings. In the example I just shared my feelings of anxiety were coming from asking myself a question most people cannot answer. Setting an expectation that can never be reached. Likewise, when we realize we can live our life based upon solid principles that produce the results we want in life instead of how we feel in the moment we can live in a state of constant joy and appreciation.
It is a great gift we have been given to be able to create a beautiful life and I think that for various reasons it takes many of us a long journey to get to the place where we realize we get to create our own version of a beautiful life. It will never be perfect and we can never avoid every pain we wish we could, but we can choose solid principles.
Some of the principles I live by are:
- Find a man who is diligent in what he does and he will stand before kings and not mere men
- You reap what you sow (I apply this to everything in my life from health to relationships)
- Give and it will be given to you (it’s amazing how when you put everyone else first they put you first)
- Never pass up an opportunity to do good if it is in your power to do so
- Loving others is more important than anything else you can do for them
- Your life is the sum total of your decisions, if you need a change, make a decision
- Some people get more out of life because they use their entire day, use the entire day
- Dream of wonderful things daily
These are just a few principles I try to live by in my life. These now are the types of things I tell myself every day. They are what produce great things in my life and those around me. This by no means is an exhaustive list and I suppose I have principles for every category of my life from the spiritual to the physical. But principles are what produce long term fulfillment because they produce the life we desire and thus the emotions follow.
The other thing I want to mention in closing of this blog post is that everything that we want in life, everything, is usually because of the emotion it is going to produce in us. When you understand this and begin to live as if those things you are believing for already exist, not only do you create an open path to success but you also produce those emotions in your current existence which produces happiness. If you do not know what you want, like I didn't when I was asking myself this daily, ask yourself what you don't want and you will be surprised how easy it becomes to realize what you do. Then live in faith that what you are believing for will come to pass. Live in those desired emotions now as you live a life of believing for wonderful things and it is amazing how not only are you happier but those wonderful things start to become reality. I think it is often because we stop with defeating thoughts and well, I also believe anything is possible.
What are your principles? What feelings do you need in your life daily that you feel are a gift?