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20 Truths To Guide You To Happiness

20 Truths To Guide You To Happiness

Old legends and folklore say happiness can be found at the end of the rainbow together with a pot of gold. Unfortunately in today’s society, happiness is wrongfully measured and is directly proportional to material gain, financial wealth, status, sex, power and influence; and it is often seen as something external, something outside of us or something that will come down from the clouds or to become a golden age.

I am in favor of all the above mentioned virtues however; if we place all of them at the core of who we are we still have the main ingredient missing, happiness.

“Happiness does not depend on what you have

Or who you are. It solely relies of what you think” – Buddha

Happiness is a state of mind, an energy or vibration internal; it is very individual to each of us. It is a choice we make on a daily basis.

Here are the 20 Truths To Guide You To Happiness:

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See how beautiful you really are

You are an individual with a divine spark that makes you unique and wonderful. If you are having trouble understanding this, look in the mirror without judgement, without condemnation, without prejudice smile at yourself; tell yourself you are beautiful no matter what you look like. Think of the many times you have been shown kindness, love, compassion, take yourself back when you were a little boy or girl; tell that little boy or girl everything about them is OK and in your mind’s eye hug them, you will be pleasantly surprised. There is no doubt about it; there is no one else like you…..

Live in the present

We live in turbulent times, and the stresses of life cannot be ignored; often there are very few things we can control. Worrying about the future is as useless as regretting the past; we only have control of the now. There is wisdom in: “As you reap, so shall you sow” because every act of love, warmth and kindness will come back to you, often tenfold.

Tap into the power of your mind

We are all directors and script writers of our own lives; what we think about (or fear most) will manifest into our reality. Thoughts, images and emotions are very strong and only if we learn to control them can we use them to bring about what we want. The law of attraction is not just a New Age concept, this has also been covered in many Holy Religious texts such as The Bible.

If you constantly visualize success, abundance, love, peace and kindness you will bring it about.

I never thought I would find a positive use for the term “Thought Police” but this is what we must do in order to have happier and more fulfilling lives.

Allow yourself to feel

One of the things I love most about my wife is her ability to feel. While watching a movie right at the moment when the boy and girl find each other and kiss, tears of joy flow down her beautiful face. We have been conditioned by society to be cold, indifferent and suppress our emotions. Allowing ourselves to feel is what makes us human. There is no right or wrong in feeling the way you do.

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Let your faith be bigger than your fears when chasing dreams

Every great achievement started with an individual having a dream, please do not think for a moment you are a single drop in an infinite sea of humanness; you are powerful, beautiful and divine and all you need is a plan.

Writing down your goals and dreams is not enough, they must be broken down into measurable and easy to achieve steps. If you want to be a writer, start by researching, join a writing group and start small to build your skill set. Poetry is a great way to get your creative juices flowing.

Start acting like a writer, believing it is part of the process. Bring this simple analogy across to anything you want to manifest.

Reward yourself

Every now and then it is nice to treat ourselves to a small reward. Life is not just about working, there has to be time to enjoy the fruits of our labor. Personally, I treat myself when I have done a good deed or when I have achieved an important goal. When rewarding myself It gives me more of an incentive to keep achieving the goals I set for myself and do more acts of kindness. I must admit, I generally forgo my reward and buy my boys a nice toy, video game. trinket, etc. My wife also gets to benefit from this, it makes me happy.

Let go of what and who no longer serve you

Along life’s journey we have accumulated, beliefs, habits and people that at some point become irrelevant. Look back when you were twenty, do some of these beliefs still hold truth to you now?

We make friends along the way, but as life happens we change, do not be afraid to let go of people who do not bring out the best in you or are still in your life due to a sense of obligation; bless them and let them go, that is one way to heal and often the relationship takes on a much positive turn if you decide to stick around.

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Do more of what makes you happy

Doing more of what makes you happy is blissful and fulfilling. Our creativity is increased when we feel happy and purposeful. Hobbies are a great way to tap into that creative energy. Nature is a great place for de-stressing, hiking, surfing, playing sport, video gaming, movies, friends, wine, dancing, arts, etc. are awesome ways to give you a break from the daily grind.

Become your own best friend

Part of becoming our best friend is going easy on ourselves. Some of us have a tendency to be our toughest critics and not forgiving ourselves makes it harder to grow. Be kind to yourself, when a negative thought pops in your mind, ask yourself why you feel this way and then mentally embrace yourself and correct the negative thought. Find positive things you have done recently and focus on them. If you do this on a daily basis you will develop a healthy image of self and it will be impossible not to like the person staring back at you in the mirror.

Always stay close to everything that makes you thrilled to be alive

I am not advocating in favor of extreme sports, thrill seeking or any of that; but if you are into them good for you. My guilty pleasure is modern architecture, I love looking at beautiful homes, gardens and landscaping because it inspires me. I know of  people who are thrilled while helping others, others find delight in producing movies, documentaries or teaching others. What do you love doing that brings that inner child out and makes you thrilled to be alive?

Learn to love your own company

You are going to take yourself everywhere so you might as well start liking yourself. Find time to be completely alone, this can be done sitting under a tree, reading a book, listening to music, blogging, drawing, painting etc. but there must not be any other people around; make it intimate as it is a wonderful feeling being alone. By discovering who you are you begin to see yourself in others.

Don’t lose yourself in your fear

There is a lot of turmoil in the world; war, unemployment, bankruptcy, illness, zombies, end times you name it; guilt and fear are useless emotions because some of the things we fear most are not very likely to happen unless we program them into our subconscious mind. Remember that we bring about what we think of (or fear) most. I learned this from a spiritual teacher: “Some of these evils in the world might not be in your soul contract” meaning your destiny will be different to theirs. Send love and kindness to the victims of these horrible circumstances, do not be cold or indifferent, and help if you can.  Focus on what makes you happy instead and bring it into your life and the lives of the ones you love.

Don’t be afraid to give up what is no longer working

This time we will focus on de-cluttering our homes and lives. Possessions have a tendency to demand our energy and attention. Having too many possessions concentrated in one room is debilitating. Clear out your living space; give away to charity items like clothes, furniture, kids toys, etc. Not only are you freeing space in your home but also in your mind. There is satisfaction knowing some of your old possessions will be going to help others in need.

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Be aware of your position. What are you running away from, or what are you running to?

Have you noticed when you leave a job because of a certain type of boss, co-worker or working environment very often we wind up with the same type of boss, co-worker or working environment in our next job? This can be attributed to what is known as the “victim mentality” and we attract these types  of people/circumstances on a subconscious level. This is also applicable in relationships. So this is when you must have a hard look at yourself and stop the negative thoughts and programming engrained in your psyche by replacing that dated set of beliefs with ones you want to manifest in your life. If you want to work at a great company with a great bunch of people, feel it, taste it and allow it to be a reality.

Don’t allow your wounds to turn you into someone you are not

Bad things happen to good people, that is inevitable and this happens when we least expect it. Do not become bitter and resentful when tragedy strikes. When someone wronged us we must understand that by hating the person we are holding on to hate, resentment and fear which can potentially manifest in illness or even more tragedy. Mourn and allow yourself to feel angry, get it out of your system and move on, do not attract more of this by becoming sour, find ways to rise above it and be happy as we only live once.

Remember to forgive yourself

When we become the perpetrators and we wrong someone else, we can experience a deep sense of guilt even when we make ourselves believe they deserved it. If the person is no longer in your life, write a letter asking the person for your forgiveness. If you send it that is fine, but if you don’t it is also OK. There is an ethereal connection between people, and the other person somehow will begin to heal. Have you ever thought of a friend or loved one and suddenly got a phone call from them? Thought is a bridge between our minds.

Know you may not always get what you want, but you will ALWAYS get what you need

There are some things in life that no matter how much we visualize, feel and yearn for and will never be a part of our reality. We always want something, but it might not be what we need for our personal growth. Trust in the Universe’s wisdom, it knows what you need in order to flourish. There is a cause and effect for every choice we make in life. Also beware of what you wish for as it might come true.

Open up to love

To me this has been one of the hardest truths to accept, this is not just about external love but the love for myself. By opening up to love we choose it as being part of our daily lives, it can manifest in a short conversation with a stranger, being kind to our neighbors, doing something nice for your family. This also means allowing others to show love to you and feeling worthy of love. Love is not a word, it is a verb.

The world needs you as you are

I look at the beautiful people on TV and even though I admire their beauty, grace and talent, I don’t think I want to be them. They cannot do some of the things I can and they do not have my wicked sense of humor. I always had an inner knowing I am here for a reason, and as far as I know it is to love and provide for my family, influence others in a positive way with my design, writing and poetry, the world needs beauty, love and compassion; this is where I come in, how about you?

Empty your mind (meditate)

Meditation is not just sitting in a Lotus position and chanting mantras, meditation can be sitting comfortably on a chair to stare out the window, under a tree watching clouds, being in the dark looking into a flame. It is important to let your mind be passive and free from all the worries you carry with you. Your mind is like a computer; if you keep storing data at some point it is going to fill its hard drive and then will crash; your mind is no different.

By emptying your mind you can also let go of dated ideas, concepts and beliefs giving room for newer and more relevant ones. Meditation is a great way to get the creative juices flowing and we tap into a much greater source of wisdom, try it and you will not regret it.

More by this author

Louis Salguero

UX, HCD, UCD, GUI, graphic and web designer

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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