Life is a long road toward achieving happiness and fulfillment.
It is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow we are all trying to find.
Everyone takes their own path toward happiness, and this elusive feeling means something different to everyone which makes it even more difficult to find; there is no clear, direct route to achieving it for yourself.
We must all pave our own way, and often it feels like we are constantly climbing up a mountain yet getting nowhere.
Happiness is a fleeting thing, and it can seem that we will work our hardest for it only to receive a few moments of the peaceful feeling.
While great reward often requires great work, we make things a lot harder on ourselves then they need to be.
There are several ways we stand in our own way, and most of the time they are little habits that we have developed over time and negative thoughts we tell ourselves on a regular basis.
They don’t seem like much, and honestly they’ve probably become such a normal part of your process that you don’t even notice them, but they add up and add to your overall dissatisfaction and unhappiness.
To break down these negative coping mechanisms and walls you’ve built up, you need to stop these harmful things in their tracks.
Here are 3 harmful things we tell ourselves on a daily basis that we need to stop:
1. I am not enough.
It’s a nagging thought that burns in the back of our minds, pushing us to do more, to be more, and to achieve more.
When we tell ourselves that we are not enough, we are blocking the opportunity for happiness to find us.
If we are not enough, then we do not deserve happiness until we are enough.
This misconception of ourselves is like a rope tied to weights that we carry on our backs, constantly pulling us down no matter how hard we are fighting to climb up that mountain of happiness.
You are enough.
If you are kind and respectful to others, you are enough.
If you haven’t given in and are still trying, you are enough.
Being enough doesn’t mean having everything or being successful at everything you try.
It means you are trying to be the person you want to be and live the best version of life you can.
You can be enough, and still want more.
You can be happy with yourself and who you are; you can believe in yourself and that you are deserving of happiness and still try new things and work to bring more experiences into your life.
Being enough and being done with finding happiness are not exclusive to each other.
“Someday” is a horrible thing to tell ourselves.
“Someday” is a fantasy.
“Someday” is an illusion.
“Someday” is not tangible.
“Someday” never comes.
When we tell ourselves that “someday” it will all be better, “someday” we won’t have to fight for happiness, “someday” we will find happily ever after and ride off into the sunset we are setting unrealistic expectations and unachievable goals.
“Someday” implies that once you get to the top of that mountain, all your struggles and unhappiness with be over.
You’ve made it, and now you can just enjoy the rest of your life without further conflict or ugly emotions.
Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.
Once you get to the top of one mountain, you’re going to find another that you need to climb. That’s because life keeps going.
You’re going to constantly be making new choices and trying new things.
Each choice comes with a new mountain.
Some may be smaller than others and easily conquered, but some may take a long time to climb.
Believing that “someday” you will be done with making choices is something we need to stop telling ourselves.
That day will come, but when it does it will be because there are no more choices to make and no more life to lead.
Instead of viewing all the new mountains to climb as obstacles and one more thing to get through, look at them as what they really are: opportunities to keep living and exploring new experiences in life.
3. I am a failure.
No, you are not.
You may have made mistakes, you may have failed at something you tried, you may have experienced a few set-backs, or maybe your life isn’t going the direction you expected or planned but you are not a failure.
There is the old expression that life doesn’t care about your plans, and that is true.
You can make plans, you can outline a path, but life will take you where it will take you based on the choices you make and it is impossible to know where all the little and big choices we make will bring us.
Because it is impossible to know the repercussions of every little choice we make along the path of life, we are inevitably going to make some mistakes.
It’s unavoidable, and it is all part of learning.
Making mistakes doesn’t make you a failure, it makes you a student.
As long as you learn something from that mistake and make the necessary change, you didn’t fail.
Our past struggles and the way we have learned to cope with them affect the little thoughts in our heads that we tell ourselves.
If we didn’t like the outcome, or have been trampled by life a time or two, it’s easy to blame ourselves or someone else.
We have control over our lives and the role we play in it.
We are not entirely at the mercy of our circumstances, nor are we to shoulder all the blame if we make a mistake or misstep.
Both the internal choices we make and the external situations combine together to create our experiences.
Life is an uphill climb, this is true, but it is not punishment or just something to get through to get the prize of happiness at the top.
Once we stop telling ourselves these harmful things, we can being to enjoy life and grow from the struggles we face.
Happiness isn’t as elusive as it seems, and we can welcome it into our lives by letting it come naturally and without stipulations.