imconfident

I sincerely believe that it is far more beneficial and far less costly to help a child build confidence than it is to fix an adult who has little or none.

Finding happiness

Are you on a mission to find happiness?  We search for happiness everywhere and we often come up empty.  We think that special someone will make us happy and they do for a while but the initial excitement soon wears off and we start looking for someone else.  We think that new job will make us happy and it does for a few months but then it gets too difficult, so we quit and look for another job.  We think that expensive dream vacation, new car, new house or new trinket will make us happy and it certainly does for some time but then when the bills come in and we have trouble paying for them, we soon lose our happiness.

Why do we have so much trouble finding happiness?  It is because we are looking for other people and things to make us happy.  This is a selfish desire and when that person or that thing doesn’t provide us with the happiness we want, we just give up and look for something else.  It is like an addiction.  We crave happiness so we look for a quick fix somewhere.  This is why there are so many relationship and marriage breakdowns today.

If you want to find real happiness, you have to bring happiness to others.  Instead of thinking about what someone can do to make you happy, think about how you can make their life better.  Instead of believing that ‘stuff’ will make you happy, think about what you can give to someone else to make their life better.  When you bring happiness to other people, this is how happiness comes to you.

We live in a selfish world.  One that teaches us to think about ourselves first and try to fill our lives with things that don’t matter.  Loving others and trying to spread happiness around is the only way to find happiness.

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Christmas repost from 2012

We all have different holiday traditions and we celebrate according to our beliefs.  Many families gather together to share a meal and open presents.  Others travel to a vacation spot to reChristmas Elflax and forget about the stresses of everyday life.   Some people don’t celebrate Christmas because of various reasons and it is just another day for them.  Then there are those who don’t have anyone to spend Christmas with because their families live too far away, they have no family, there is conflict or all their loved ones have passed away.

Most of us have high expectations of Christmas.  We want to spend time with family and friends, enjoying the season.   When this doesn’t happen we feel like something is wrong and we react in a negative way, often hurting ourselves in the process.

Christmas can be a difficult time if you are alone.  However, being alone does not have to result in unhappiness.  Many people spend Christmas alone by choice and they are not lonely or miserable.  It is all a matter of perception.

Instead of feeling bad about the season, try making a list of things you like to do and then take action.   Here are some ideas:

  1. Watch some favourite movies, read some books, listen to music.
  2. Call some friends and invite them to come for coffee.  They might feel lonely too and enjoy the company.
  3. Consider getting a pet if you don’t have one.   They are great companions.  Find one that suits your needs and is easy to care for.  Having a dog is a great excuse for taking a walk.
  4. If you belong to a church, make sure you attend Christmas services.  If you don’t, consider attending one as it will help you feel part of the celebration.
  5. Organize your home or start a new project.
  6. Do something creative.  Starting writing, drawing or do some crafts.
  7. Play a game like solitaire or do crossword puzzles.
  8. Visit a mall while they are open and watch people.
  9. Help volunteer at a soup kitchen or visit a senior home and share yourself with others.  This is guaranteed to bring happiness to all.
  10. Always be positive about life.

These ideas are great for anytime of year.  If you fill your life with positive activity and surround yourself with positive people, you won’t have time to feel lonely.  Treat yourself like the special person you are and have a very merry Christmas!  Love to everyone!  🙂

This is the message of Christmas:  We are never alone.  ~Taylor Caldwell

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Our days are happier…..

our days are happier RELATIONSHIPS

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More often means less

We are all driven to believe that if we have more stuff, more power, more money, more anything, that we will be happier.  When are people going to realize that having more does not bring happiness?

At this time in history, we have access to more choices than ever before.  We can have almost anything we want.  Yet depression, anxiety and stress are growing.  We have more stuff but less happiness.  More money but more debt.  More power but feel powerless.  More toys but less fun.

We need to realize that happiness comes from within.  It is how we feel about ourselves and our inner strength.  We can’t buy happiness, gain it through other people or create it from things that aren’t real.

If you want more out of life, start focusing on what is important.  What do you have that adds joy to your life?  What are you passionate about?  What are the things that just take up your time and only bring stress?  Try to eliminate anything that is basically wasting your time and adding no value to your life.  Set your priorities and invest time in those areas.

Life is short.  Make the most of the time you have and have more of what is important.

 

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Where does happiness come from?

Have you ever wondered why some people who seem to have everything in life are unhappy, yet other people who have little or nothing seem to be bursting with joy?

People who have lots of money and possessions feel that something is missing.  People who have good looks have trouble making good relationships.  People who have power feel powerless.   People who are surrounded by friends feel alone.  There are so many people in the world who appear to have great lives but they are extremely unhappy and unfulfilled.  On the other hand, people who live in poverty and struggle each day with hunger and sickness are often the happiest people you will meet.

Why does this happen?  Because things of this world are temporary and can only give temporary satisfaction.  Reaching for material things to bring happiness will never give you what you are looking for.  You can have the perfect life, the perfect house, the perfect job, the perfect family and you still won’t be happy.  Of course, it really isn’t possible to have perfection in a world that is far from perfect.  When you look for happiness in objects, they will never be enough.  You have to look inside you and around you.

Happiness comes from being confident in who you are, not who you want to be or what you have.  It is:

  • knowing that you have great abilities and qualities that make you different from anyone else
  • being thankful for what you have and not desiring things you don’t need
  • understanding that you were created to be special and unique
  • wanting to help other people and guide them towards a better way of life
  • being a positive role model
  • having faith in someone bigger than yourself

We all can choose everyday to be happy or not to be happy.  It is all how we look at the world around us and what we do with the gifts we have been given.  When you get up tomorrow, choose to be happy and have a wonderful day!

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I’ll be happy when…..

Have you ever said any of the following statements?

  • I’ll be happy when I graduate from college.
  • I’ll be happy when I get a good job.
  • I’ll be happy when I get married.
  • I’ll be happy when I have children.
  • I’ll be happy when I can buy a new car or a bigger house.
  • I’ll be happy when I go on my dream vacation.
  • I’ll be happy when I get a better job.
  • I’ll be happy when I lose 5, 10, 20, 50 pounds.
  • I’ll be happy when my spouse pays more attention to me.
  • I’ll be happy when I make more money.
  • I’ll be happy when my kids move out.
  • I’ll be happy when I retire.

I used to believe that when something good happened to me, I would be happy.   Then when it did happen, happiness was short-lived.

Looking to the future and believing that something or someone will make you happy, is a false belief.  Everyone is searching for happiness but many of us never find it.  We run around like a gerbil on a wheel and keep hoping to fill the emptiness inside.  The problem is, nothing external will satisfy our needs for very long.

If we want to be happy, we have to change the way we think.  Instead of believing that happiness comes from outside, we have to realize that happiness comes from inside.  When we are satisfied with our lives and thankful for what we have, happiness will find us.  We can create our own happiness by having a positive attitude, we don’t have to go looking for it.  We can choose to be happy or we can choose to be unhappy.  Which will you choose?

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At the end of the night

at the end of the night

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Stop focusing on your problems

Everyone has problems in life.  We can’t live in a world surrounded by other people who are different than we are, and not expect to have problems.   Besides being different, we are also selfish by nature and expect everyone else to cater to our needs.  When we don’t get what we want, we often react in a negative way through anger, feeling sorry for ourselves or blaming someone else for our problems.

We can get so wound up in our problems that we forget to look for the good things in our lives.  We focus on the negatives and what we don’t have.  We think about our mistakes and what went wrong.  Our problems take over our lives and leave us feeling miserable, defeated and depressed.

If you want to have a happier, more fulfilling life, it is important that you stop focusing on your problems and start focusing on a solution to your problems.  Be consciously aware of what you are thinking and try to make positive changes.  Here are some ideas:

  • If you were to bake a cake and you burnt the edges, you could just toss out the cake, have a crying fit and feel bad about the situation.  OR…..You could cut off the burnt edges and cover the cake with some fluffy icing.  Problem fixed and you can pat yourself on the back for doing a good job.
  • If someone said to you some unkind words, you could run away and cry, feeling bad for yourself.   OR…You could ask them why they were unkind and if they were having a bad day.  Maybe they didn’t really mean to hurt you or you misunderstood what they said.  If they did intend to hurt you, then you could tell yourself that they were just unloading their pain on somebody and that you don’t have to take it personally.
  • If someone didn’t keep a promise they made, you could feel hurt and never talk to the person again.   OR…You could give them the benefit of the doubt and realize that maybe something happened to distract them.  Keep in communication with them and make sure you confirm any future promises.

Focusing on your problems will just keep you from being happy in life.  Try focusing on the good things, be thankful for what you have and work on possible solutions to any problems.

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What are you thankful for today?

We all have things to be thankful for, but too often we are so focused on our problems that we can’t even see anything to be thankful for.

Life can be very difficult at times but there is no point dwelling on our problems and staying stuck in negative thinking.  If we look at our problems with a positive perspective, it will be much easier to deal with them.

It doesn’t matter what kind of situation we are in.  We can focus on the good things or the bad things.  That is our choice.  Focusing on the bad things will just bring us pain and unhappiness.  Focusing on the good things can bring us peace and happiness.  Sometimes it can be hard to see the good through the bad but it is possible if we try hard to create a new habit of positive thinking.

Start looking for the good instead of the bad and be thankful for all the good things in your life.   Here are some ideas:

  • be thankful that you have family and friends
  • be thankful that you have a house to live in and food to eat
  • be thankful that you have a job, even if you don’t like it
  • be thankful that you have clean water to drink
  • be thankful that you have a car to drive or a bus to take
  • be thankful that you have some money in your pocket
  • be thankful that you have ears to hear and eyes to see
  • be thankful that you have arms and legs that work
  • add your own ideas – there is so much to be thankful for
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Take a trip to the garbage dump

If you have ever been to the garbage dump, you will know that it is a stinky, messy place that isn’t very pleasant.  I’ve had the pleasure (not) of going many times after doing a major cleanup for a client that has been hoarding stuff for years.  It’s definitely not one of my favourite places to visit, but sometimes it is necessary.

So why would I suggest that you take a trip to the garbage dump?  Well you don’t really have to physically go there, just look up some pictures and contemplate what you are looking at.  Really concentrate on the piles of garbage in front of you.  They came from people’s houses.  Many of the things in these piles were once prized possessions or special memories.   They included:

  • Furniture to sit on
  • Knickknacks to look at
  • Toys to play with
  • Tools to work with
  • Clothing to wear
  • Books and magazines to read
  • Appliances, electronics and numerous other things that we just couldn’t do without

We spend a lot of our time building up possessions that someday will end up rotting in the ground.  The sad thing is that many people prize their possessions more than the people around them.  Focusing on accumulating stuff often creates problems in relationships, financial struggles and having future regrets.  The more we have, the more we want and we are never happy.

Think about what is important in your life.  Do you really want to spend your hard-earned money on unimportant stuff that will eventually disappear?  Invest your time in building good relationships and save some money for your future.  If you really need to spend some money, donate to a worthy cause so it will be invested in someone’s future!

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