Stop Wanting More - A Guide To Being Happy Right Now

It is so like us as humans to keep looking ahead to the next thing. We wake up with a perfectly great day, and by noon we have wasted the better part of our morning thinking about tomorrow's problems. I get it. As the woman of the house, you feel the need to keep everyone organized. If you don't, you see the walls literally crumbling around you.

Okay, now I see why my husband says I don't use that word in the right context. However, when you're clutching your sheets to your chest at night realizing you're already behind for tomorrow, the walls feel as if they are (literally) fall down.  

It was especially easy to feel out of whack around the holidays. Even with the magic and dreamy lights, sometimes all the pressure we placed on ourselves left us feeling less than. We looked at our neighbors making homemade gluten free gingerbread houses, and felt their eyes on us as they watched us bring our clearance, sugar-loaded, store-bought, gingerbread house inside.

Next year, we said. Next year I'll make the best homemade one anyone has ever seen!

We saw people spending money to buy gifts we couldn't afford to give. We saw people and their perfectly wrapped presents. Meanwhile, our presents looked like we made our kids wrap their own. Next year I will buy all locally made paper from small shops, and hand stamp each package with gold foil reindeer!

We just keep longing for " when ", though we should be focused on " now ".  

Since we are human, these thoughts are natural, but don't let control you. Here are a few ways to keep your mind focused on being truly happy this year.


1. Figure out what being happy means to you

For me, happiness is when my kids are bathed and in footed pj's. It's when they give me a rock they picked up because they think it looks like a heart. It's when my husband comes home at 6pm instead of 8pm just because he missed me. It's when I see the people I love genuinely happy.

When you look at your reasons, it helps you put life into perspective. Of course it would be amazeballs if we won the lotto and I could buy a house in every time zone, but the happiness would be temporary. Your life may not be where you envisioned it, but if you can't be happy with where you're at, while you're getting to where you want to go, you will never be happy when you finally get there.  


2. Be aware of the present

As women and mamas, it's very hard to do this one. You constantly have to be thinking of the past, present, and future. Where to drop the kids off, where to pick them up, homework, and oh yea, did they eat three meals today? Most days just fly right by before you're waking up to do it all over again.

Look for those beautiful little moments throughout your day. They are there. Maybe someone held the door open for you, or paid for your coffee. Maybe your kids let you sleep in an extra 15 minutes, or got an A on that test you helped them study for. The moments are there. When you start looking, you will see them so much easier.  


3. Be grateful, and give thanks.

Happy people constantly give thanks. They give thanks for what they have, and where they are, instead of focusing on what they do not have. You could do this in your daily prayers, or in a journal. Even starting off going through the motions of a grateful person will help you get there.

Say thank you, and mean it - be sincere, and remember the bad. That last one seems like a real drain, but I promise if you reflect on hard times in your life it will make you appreciate what you have so much more.  
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4. Make attainable daily lists

Checking off things on my list, gives me a little high. It's wonderful to feel accomplished, especially when some days it's as if you're just spinning your wheels. Make a list of 5-10 things you know you can get done. Example: vacuum, wipe down kitchen, clean out junk drawer. Do NOT put clean the whole house on your list.

That is not feasible. If you have a light day with nowhere else to be, you might make your list a bit more of a challenge. But, puhleez do not schedule three doctors appointments and try to paint your dining room in the same day. Speaking from experience, everyone ends up cranky, and your pediatrician wonders why the kids have paint in their hair.  


5. Take control of your thoughts, before they take control of you.  

If you think negative, you will become negative.

If all you're doing is wishing for things you don't have, or looking forward to the next season of your life to begin, you will waste your beautiful life away. Some days I daydream of my kids getting older so they won't need to crawl into our bed at night. I think of all the extra sleep I could get for my under eyes, and my soul.

I quickly shake those thoughts away, because they are almost to the age where I can't pick them up anymore. They are at the age where they get embarrassed when I watch them play. They already are in a new season. Everyday they change and grow, and I wouldn't want to miss that for the world. That's why there's coffee right? Endless amounts of coffee.  

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We all do it. We put too much on our plates, and fill our heads with seemingly impossible visions. It leaves us not fully enjoying the life we already have. We may not have all the money in the world, or perfectly packaged gifts, but you don't need those things to be happy.

I think we could all benefit from Mr. Abraham Lincoln - " Most folks are as happy as they make up their mind to be ".  

I happen to agree Mr. Lincoln.


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