June 17, 2015

6 Action Steps to Finding Happiness.

Woman in Flowers

This is the year of my 40th birthday.

I’ve only begun climbing out of the tiny box of everyone’s expectations over the past year. To be bold, to be brave and to have the confidence and faith to start living the life I want. It’s the happy life I didn’t even know I wanted!

I did everything I was “supposed” to do to bring happiness to my life. I received degrees and had a great job, but was still missing something. That something must be to get married. Check. Next, buy a house. Check.

Still missing something.

Obviously, having children and being a stay-at-home mom was going to fill me up, be my life’s purpose and bring all the joy and happiness anyone could possibly want. As you might guess, it didn’t go that way for me. I struggled.

I love my children, but it was not what I expected. As an individual, a woman, an educated woman, I felt more uncertain of who I was than ever before.

The guilt I felt being unfulfilled, as a stay-at-home-mom was difficult to deal with. Before becoming a mother I was certain it was what I wanted. My guilt pulled me in the direction of wanting to be there with them all the time, but my heart pulled me in a different direction. This constant pulling in opposite directions played strongly on my anxiety.

Why am I unhappy? I have everything I’ve ever wanted. What do I want? I am grateful, I truly am, but I still feel something is missing.

I feel guilty now that I appear ungrateful.

How do you find happiness?

This is how I found happiness at nearly 40 years old:

1. Recognize and accept that what you are currently doing is not working and decide to make a change.

The decision to stay home with my kids, feeling unfulfilled for as long as I did was a choice I made out of fear and guilt. It was a choice that I didn’t intentionally make, but as a result I was drifting through life, letting it happen to me. I took a risk and started my own business, which led me to learning my passion.

2. Dream.

Dream big.

I always would think “that would be nice,” but never dreamed in a “this will really happen” kind of way.

To me, a dream was something that wasn’t achievable; it wasn’t possible. Now, my heart and mind is set on the prize.

My dreams are goals that are non-negotiable.

3. Pay attention to your thoughts.

By eliminating the negative, self-pitying and limiting beliefs, I began to believe in myself and in my abilities to move closer to my dreams.

4. Be yourself.

As you noticed your thoughts you may have found that a lot of what you think and therefore believe is not how you truly feel. Some things you’ve heard so often through your life, you have taken on as your own thoughts. I spent a lot of time closely listening and raking through my automatic thought patterns. Then threw out the ones that were out of alignment for me and replaced them with ones that felt true to my soul.

Knowing who I am and what I believe allows me to be exactly who I am and not be affected by other’s perceptions.

Some people will like me and others will not. I am okay with that.

5. Take action.

Without taking action a dream will remain a dream instead of becoming reality. I decided what I want out of life and am working by taking small steps in that direction. Every step is a success! I am happily living life with purpose and enjoying the amazing journey of reaching my dreams.

6. Find a support system.

When dreaming big, taking risks and living a life you desire, you will find that many people, often times the people closest to you, will give you a hard time and try to talk you out of it.

Share what you feel comfortable with this group of people and surround your self with others that understand your dreams and commitment in achieving them.




Author: Ida Rose Butwin

Editor:  Renée P.

Image: Lauren Hammond/Flickr 

Leave a Thoughtful Comment

Read 0 comments and reply

Top Contributors Latest

Ida Rose Butwin